TAIPEI (CNA) – Taiwan and the United States have decided to drop their plans to build a second set of six satellites for FormoSat-7 due to funding issues, Taiwan’s National Space Organization (NSPO) confirmed Friday.

Following a report on the SpaceNews website, NSPO Deputy Director-General Yu Shiann-jeng (余憲政) confirmed that the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and Taiwan’s Ministry of Science and Technology had agreed earlier this month not to pursue development of a second set of six satellites, known as COSMIC-2B.

The decision was reached due to difficulty financing the COSMIC-2B system, according to Yu.

FormoSat-7 is a collaborative effort between the NSPO and NOAA and a follow-on mission to FormoSat-3, according to the NSPO.

FormoSat-7 was originally planned to feature two sets of six satellites to collect GPS radio occultation data used in weather forecasting.

An initial set of six satellites, known as COSMIC-2A, has been built and is scheduled for launch as part of the U.S. Air Force’s Space Test Program 2 mission in early 2018, SpaceNews said.

The COMSIC satellites carry out constellation meteorology, ionosphere, and climate observations.

By Chu Che-wei and Y.F. Low