Nigeria’s FUTA finally launches satellite into U.S space
Nigeria’s Federal University of Technology, Akure (FUTA) has successfully launched its satellite into space, becoming the first Nigerian university to achieve such feat. The university announced few days back it was part of the Birds 1 satellites project which will see 5 CubeSats – nano-satellites weighing 2kg or thereabout – launched into space.
The satellite was scheduled to launch into space from Kennedy Space Centre in Florida, USA on 1 June 2017 but due to bad weather conditions, this couldn’t happen.
A new date, 3 June 2017, was set for a relaunch, and it was successful. The Space X Falcon 9 Rocket launched Birds 1 satellites, which contained 5 CubeSats with one belonging to Nigeria’s Federal University of Technology, Akure, at exactly 10:07 PM Nigerian Time on the aforementioned date. Called NigeriaEdusat-1, FUTA’s satellite was designed and built in collaboration with Nigeria’s National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA) and Kyushu Institute of Technology Japan. NigeriaEdusat-1 will domesticate the satellite technology in a Nigerian university, FUTA that is, and be used for research purposes, as well as for resources and environmental management, and sustainable socio-economic development of the nation.
The university’s Vice Chancellor, Professor Joseph Fuwape stated that with the successful launch FUTA has shown the capabilities of Nigerian scientists and would build on the success to concretize its leading position in cutting edge researches and scientific breakthroughs. The satellite docked at the International Space Station (ISS) on 5 June 2017 at 10:30 AM Nigerian Time. FUTA’s NigeriaEdusat-1 will be deployed into lower orbit during the last week of June 2017.