Pakistan-made Satellite Launch Vehicle (SLV) to be ready by 2003 24 November 1999 ISLAMABAD: Pakistan will develop its own satellite launching vehicle within a period of about three years, to carry out environmental tests. This was stated by Dr Abdul Majid, Chairman Pakistan Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (SUPARCO), while talking to newsmen here on Wednesday after opening of international workshop on Low Cost Space Missions. Pakistan, he said is also planning to develop its own indigenous 'earth observation satellite' within a period of two to three years. To a question, he said the Badr-B satellite will be launched in March next year. Earlier addressing the inaugural session of the workshop, Dr Abdul Majid said Pakistan's long term development programme is aimed at developing manpower and relevant infrastructure for design and fabrication of light weight satellites. He said Pakistan's first experimental satellite Badr-1, successfully launched into a low earth orbit in July 1990, was indigenously designed and fabricated while indigenous facilities were used for its tracking, acquisition and telecommand. He said the primary mission objectives of Badr-1 were evaluation of indigenously designed hardware and software in space environment, and to obtain hands-on experience in telecommands and two-way communications between the ground control station and the spacecraft, which were largely achieved. The experience and the confidence gained has been used to complete the second satellite which presently is undergoing integration tests with the Russian satellite in Moscow, he added. Badr-B is scheduled to be launched from Baikonour Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan on a Zenit-2 rocket. The main mission objectives of Badr-B programme include indigenous development of low cost satellites and creation of necessary infrastructure for future development in this field. The Chairman SUPARCO said Pakistan has always been very keen to share its known-how, information and development efforts with the Islamic Ummah. He said proposals for participation in Pakistan's Badr satellite programme and development of a Pan-Islamic Earth Observation Satellite could be cited as efforts made by Inter-Islamic Network on Space Sciences and Technology (ISNET) towards that end.