Quito: Ecuador`s first satellite avoided a direct collision with the remains of a Russian rocket, but whether the device is still operating remains unclear, the head of the country`s EXA space agency told EFE.
The US-based Joint Space Operations Center, which had alerted EXA to the possible threat to Pegaso, informed the Ecuadorian agency Thursday that the Russian wreckage did not hit the satellite head-on.
"There was no frontal, direct collision, but we knew that the rocket carried fragments," EXA director Ronnie Nader said, adding that Pegaso`s next transmission to the ground monitoring station is scheduled for Friday.
"I know that it`s whole, I know that it`s in orbit, but I don`t know if it still works," Ecuador`s first astronaut said.
Pegaso, a cube weighing just 2.1 kg, was placed in orbit April 26 and began transmitting video May 16, providing overhead views of Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela.
The nano-satellite was launched from China`s Jiuquan space center. Pegaso`s twin, Krysaor, is set for lift-off in August atop a Russian rocket.