Taiwan to develop LEO constellation
July 20, 2021
By Chris Forrester
Taiwan is looking closely at the development of its own low Earth orbiting satellites.
Minister of Science and Technology Wu Tsung-tsong, in an interview with the country’s Central News Agency and reported by the Taipei Times, said “It is an opportunity Taiwan definitely cannot afford to miss,” he said. Such satellites, which are often deployed in constellations, have a relatively short life cycle of two to four years compared with larger ones and, therefore, offer more of an opportunity for Taiwanese businesses, he added.
The government this year launched a four-year, NT$4 billion (€121.4m) project with the aim of launching its first LEO communications satellite in 2025.
Also expected to help is the country’s Space Development Promotion Act, which was promulgated at the end of May. The Act, which regulates the nation’s space-based activities, shows the world Taiwan’s ambition to carve out its own niche in the space economy, Wu said. The Act covers four areas – setting principles of development that are aligned with international space laws, regulating space-based activities to ensure safety, establishing rocket launch sites and promoting industrial development, Wu said. The ministry is designated as the regulator of the sector and will establish a dedicated agency to deal with related affairs, he said.