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Thailand HJ-1A Ground Receiving Station Put into Operation
    UPDATED: 2011-07-15
BEIJING, July 13 (China Space News) — A naming and opening ceremony for the Thailand HJ-1A satellite (SMMS) ground receiving station was held on July 9 in Bangkok.

Thai Princess Chulabhorn attended the ceremony at Kasetsart University campus and unveiled the ground receiving station which is named after her.

The ground receiving system for the HJ-1A satellite was constructed by Center for Resources Satellite Data and Applications (CRESDA), a subsidiary of China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC), and was formally delivered to Thailand on April 1.

According to media reports, in its trial phase the ground station helped monitor the floods which hit southern Thailand. As the HJ-1A satellite passed over the flood-hit region in Thailand, it relayed satellite images of the situation below to the ground station on a daily basis -- providing useful information of how the disaster was unfolding.

Zhou Weimin, chief engineer of CASC presented a model of the HJ-1A satellite to Princess Chulabhorn at the ceremony and said that the Chulabhorn Satellite Station would open a new chapter for Sino-Thailand aerospace cooperation.

"A receiving station for China's CBERS was put into operation in South Africa in 2008, and free satellite data was made available to that country. The launch of the Thailand ground station means that China's space technology will also benefit ASEAN nations," said Mr. Zhou.