Launch of Nigerian Satellite in 2025 No Longer Feasible – NASRDA D-G

Nigeria still has an operational satellite, NigeriaSat-2, in orbit and it is still providing imagery for the country
The Director-General of the National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA), Halilu Shaba, says the agency’s plan to launch a satellite from Nigeria in 2025 is no longer feasible.

Mr Shaba said this at the NASRDA Day presentation at the ongoing 8th Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) Expo, with the theme “STI: Solutions to National Economic Challenges’’ in Abuja.

The director-general focused his presentation on “New Space: Aligning with the Renewed Hope Agenda’’
According to him, while launching of satellite is capital intensive, the agency is not financially ready, but it is developing the needed capacity.

“Presently, we don’t have the window to send an astronaut to space, because it is very expensive, it is when we have the slot and make plans within five years that we can launch an astronaut.

“We cannot advise the government to train an astronaut now when we don’t have the slot, the person may probably get older and not fit for space by the time we get a slot.

“For the launch of a satellite, you don’t design a big satellite in one year, it takes up to two years.

“We have all the manpower, but the resources are not here yet, and I doubt if we can achieve that even in 2027,’’ the director-general said.

According to him, the agency already has the design of a desired satellite and with the improvement of budgetary allocations, it can build and launch a satellite from Nigeria in the near future.

On the need to review the roadmap expected to have its benchmark in 2025, the director-general said that the agency constantly updates it according to current realities, which include exchange rates.

“Space programmes are all-encompassing and the agency, over time, has been developing some space spin-offs that are impacting the economy.”

According to him, Nigeria still has an operational satellite, NigeriaSat-2, in orbit and it is still providing imagery for the country, Africa and countries across the globe.

The director-general said other achievements of the agency included developing a rocketry programme in collaboration with the military, geo-visualisation of terrorists’ activities in the North-east and crime mapping.
“We recently estimated the population of the Abuja Municipal Area Council, using the NigeriaSat-2’s High-Resolution Satellite Imagery.

“This is because we have not had a census in over ten years which is overdue. So, the estimation was to give a population idea.

“We are also monitoring earth tremors across Nigeria and Africa in collaboration with China to safeguard other African countries,’’ the director-general said.

He added that space science and technology requires precision because its development takes time and Nigerians will eventually reap the benefits of satellite technology.


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