Russia's Federal Space Agency has signed a cooperation agreement with the South African National Space Agency on the sidelines of the fifth BRICS summit in Durban, the South African government said in a communique.
Under the deal, the Russian agency will provide the hardware for upgrading a tracking station for the RadioAstron satellite. The South African National Space Agency will install and maintain the upgraded hardware and operate the tracking station.
The RadioAstron satellite was launched by Russia on July 18, 2011. It carries a radio telescope that obtains images and coordinates of various radio-emitting objects.
The project is an international collaboration led by the Astro Space Center of the Lebedev Physical Institute in Moscow, the communique said.