The CEO of the Egyptian Space Agency on Wednesday briefed a delegation of MPs from the parliament’s Education and Scientific Research Committee at the Egyptian Space Agency headquarters of the agency’s readiness to launch the African Development satellite, in partnership with seven African countries.
He stated this during the delegates visit to the Egyptian Space Agency headquarters in Cairo. The satellite will address issues related to climate change and other climate variables on the continent. The project is part of the African Development Satellite Initiative (AfDev-Sat), an integration of African countries in the field of space technology and applications to respond to domestic, regional and continental strategic needs.
Countries involved in the African Development satellite project include Sudan, Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya and others. According to El-Qousy, more African countries have expressed their desire to join the satellite project.
AfDev-Sat was first announced by Egypt’s Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research, Dr Khaled Abdel Ghaffar, at the Africa Space Forum on the sidelines of the seventh Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD7) held in Yokohama, Japan on 28 August 2019.
Africa has already launched three multilateral satellites in orbit including RASCOM-QAF1, RASCOM-QAF 1R and New Dawn.
However, Africa countries continue to intensify space collaborations in pursuit of continental development goals, with the most recent of such being the AFCONSAT project hosted by Ghana’s All Nations University. The pan-African constellation satellite project will see the design, building and launch of earth observation satellites and ground stations for ten African nations by 2024.
In February 2019, Egypt won the bid to host the African Space Agency.
Ogechi Onuoha is a Cambridge Certified ESOL editor with a background in reporting, international relations, creative writing and adept in industry research and analysis. She is passionate about curating and evaluating the benefits/relevance of space to grassroots development and women’s participation in the space sector.