NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Kenya on Friday launched the first nano satellite
into space amid quest by the government to promote space
exploration to help address food security, environmental and
The mini satellite
that measures ten by ten centimeters was developed through a
collaborative venture between the University of Nairobi, the
United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) and the
Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA).
Macharia Kamau, the
Principal Secretary in Kenya’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and
International Trade, hailed the launch of the inaugural mini
satellite into orbit saying it will position Kenya as a regional
hub for space exploration.
“This is a momentous
occasion in our country’s space exploration history and will
help us address challenges related to climate change like
droughts, floods and habitat loss,” Kamau remarked.
He added that the
launch of a satellite into space will revolutionize weather
prediction and boost disaster management in the country.
“Today’s launch of
nano satellite will enhance availability of timely data to
strengthen land use and environmental management,” said Kamau,
adding that space exploration will hasten the attainment of Big
partnered with their counterparts from Japan to develop the nano
satellite project that cost 1 million U.S. dollars.
Isaac Mbeche, the
Deputy Vice-Chancellor of University of Nairobi, said the
deployment of Kenya’s first nano satellite into space will
inspire the country’s young scientists to come up with
“We are happy this
breakthrough will inspire our scientists and young people to
innovate and provide solution to challenges inherent in our
society,” said Mbithi.
He revealed that the
nano satellite consists of two commercial cameras and web
broadcasters that are capable of relaying data, sound and images
on real time basis.
“The launch of a
nano satellite heralds the next phase of development of a bigger
and high resolution satellite,” said Mbeche, adding that Kenyan
academic and research bodies are exploring new partnerships to
revitalize space science in the east African country.