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Kanyini: One small satellite for Lot Fourteen, one giant leap for the Australian space industry

Posted June 21, 2022

South Australia is set to cement its place as a leader in the space industry when it launches Kanyini, the first state-owned satellite next year.

By Isabella Kelly, Future Adelaide Intern

An artist’s impression of South Australia’s first satellite, Kanyini, which is a collaboration between some of the biggest names in the Australian space ecosystem.

South Australia’s own satellite is set to benefit the state when it launches next year in a collaboration between local leaders of the space industry.

Dubbed Kanyini, the satellite is being built by Inovor Technologies at Lot Fourteen, in partnership with space tech business Myriota, the SmartSAT Co-operative Research Centre and the South Australian Government.

Inovor Technologies founder and chief executive officer Dr Matthew Tetlow says the Kanyini project will provide a massive industry growth opportunity. Picture: Matt Turner

Set to make South Australia the first state with its own satellite, Kanyini will enhance Australia’s sovereign capabilities in the space sector.

“Ninety-five per cent of our information and space services come from satellites belonging to other countries. Anything could happen that can impact us having access to it,” mission director at SmartSAT CRC Peter Nikoloff says.

Inovor Technologies founder and chief executive officer Dr Matthew Tetlow says this project will also provide a massive industry growth opportunity.

“It’s an opportunity to accelerate spacecraft development in Australia, in particular South Australia,” Dr Tetlow says.

As the only satellite manufacturing company to be building satellites in Australia using an Australian supply chain, Inovor has been involved in the design, manufacture and testing of Kanyini.

SmartSAT CRC mission director Peter Nikoloff. Picture: AAP Image/James Elsby

Not only will Kanyini provide the state with a new independence, but it will also deliver potentially life-changing earth observation opportunities.

Myriota is designing the satellite’s two payloads, which co-founder and chief technology officer Dr David Haley says will provide valuable information.

“By providing access to critical data – anywhere and everywhere it’s needed – Kanyini will help improve and monitor water quality, crop health, and climate change variables,” Dr Haley says.

“One area that could be greatly impacted by Kanyini is the management of bushfire risk zones.

“The imager is able to measure plant growth which equates to fuel load … this can then be used to infer bushfire risk zones,” Dr Tetlow says.

Myriota co-founders Dr Alex Grant and Dr David Haley. Picture: Rosina Possingham.

This collaboration between some of the biggest names in the South Australian space ecosystem has been a success.

“The program is providing the perfect opportunity to share our collective experience and deliver an outcome for the South Australian space industry that is far greater than the sum of its parts,” Dr Haley says.

The South Australian-owned satellite Kanyini will be the first of many for the nation, with $1.2 billion of funding having recently been announced in the federal budget to go towards a constellation of four Australian-made and operated satellites.

Original article published on

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