VENTURES AFRICA – Nigeria’s National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA) has revealed plans to commercialise imageries from the NigeriaSat-2 and NigeriaSat-X, the country’s two earth observation satellites launched into the orbit recently, starting June.
The Director General NARSDA Seidu Mohammed disclosed NASRDA image commercialisation plans during the industrial visit of members of the Space Engineering Division, (SED) of the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE) to the agency in Abuja. According to NASRDA’s DG, over 150 imageries from the satellites had been downloaded at their ground station, all of which he said had been tested and proved to be of high standard that could be adopted for use in any part of the world.
The DG said the agency had already signed agreements with indigenous and foreign companies on the sale of the imageries and firstline software developers across the world were now developing modules from NigeriaSat-2.
The development would assist the country to develop software that could be sold across the world, the DG explained. Mohammed also said that NASRDA had the plan to use its data validation for ground measurement, address the alarming lead poisoning in Zamfara State,in the Northern part of Nigeria, identifying mosquitoes breeding water bodies for malaria intervention, deforestation issues in the South West and erosion information in the South East, among others.
Further, the DG hinted that resource persons from various universities would be funded to participate in the validation process. He said that collaboration between NASRDA and the SED in the implementation of the agency’s space programmes, was necessary for achieving the country’s space roadmap and Vision 20:2020.
Michael Ogbonna Agu, chairman of SED urged Nigerian engineers to study the performance and potential of the country’s satellites and contribute their quota to the development of its space science and technology.
According to him, the space industry had become a key component in the development of any nation.
Also speaking during the visit, the Deputy President of NSE, Otis Anyaeji called for continued cooperation between the society and NASRD, stating that the purpose of the industrial visit was to ascertain the performances of scientists and engineers on air space crafts and other efforts of the agency.
Anyaeji also expressed delight as over 70 percent of the satellite engineers were Nigerians.
On the 17th of August, 2011, at 07:12:20 UTC, NigeriaSat-2 and NigeriaSat-X satellites were successfully launched onboard a Dnepr rocket from Yasny in southern Russia. The highly advanced Earth observation satellites were launched with the aim of boosting African capabilities for natural resource management and aid disaster relief through Disaster Monitoring Constellation.
NASRDA was established on the 5th of May, 1999 with an objective to pursue the development and application of space science and technology for the socio-economic benefits of Nigeria.