The Federal University of Technology Akure (FUTA) in Ondo State, in partnership with other local and international organisations and countries, will today launch a CubeSat, with the code name NigeriaEdusat-1, into space from the Kennedy Space Centre in Florida, United States.
“It is the first ever university satellite to be launched in Nigeria,” a statement by the university said, adding that the satellite “Nigerian Cubesat” is a component of the Birds 1 satellites, comprising of four other CubeSats belonging to Japan, Ghana, Mongolia and Bangladesh.
They will be launched from the SpaceX Falcon9 Rocket.
Here is the full statement below:
The Federal University of Technology, Akure, FUTA, scientific prowess will get a big fillip on Thursday June 1st at 10.55pm (Nigerian time), when the SpaceX Falcon9 Rocket launches Birds 1 satellites, comprising 5 CubeSats belonging to Japan, Ghana, Mongolia, Nigeria and Bangladesh, into Space from Kennedy Space Centre in Florida, USA.
The Nigerian CubeSat, code name NigeriaEdusat-1, is designed, built and owned by The Federal University of Technology Akure, FUTA, in collaboration with National Space Research and Development Agency, NASRDA, Abuja, Nigeria, and Kyushu Institute of Technology Japan.
Ibukun Adebolu of FUTA’s Department of Mechanical Engineering is the representative of Nigeria on the project. It is the first ever university satellite to be launched in Nigeria. The CubeSats will be launched and docked to the International Space Station where the satellites will be deployed into lower orbit during the last week of June 2017. The CubeSats launch can be viewed live via the link https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P11y8N22Rq0 and http://www.spacex.com/missions
Nigeria’s media outfits are expected to view the launch and capture the reports and photographs for public consumption/information.
The major objective of NigeriaEdusat-1 is capacity building, i. e. domesticating the satellite technology in a Nigerian university, FUTA, and making the technology a common business among staff and students of the university in Nigeria for the purpose of research, resources and environmental management and sustainable socio-economic development of the nation.
The satellite technology development in the long run shall have spillover effects on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education that is an essential tool for a country industrial development.