The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) have selected a team from the University of Nairobi to be the first to benefit from the UNOOSA-JAXA KiboCUBE programme.
KiboCUBE was launched in September 2015 as a capacity-building initiative between UNOOSA and JAXA to offer educational and research institutions from developing countries the opportunity to deploy cube satellites (CubeSats) from the Kibo module of the International Space Station. Applications for the first round of KiboCUBE selection closed in March 2016 and a number of impressive applications were received.
As the successful candidate, the University of Nairobi team plans to use its KiboCUBE CubeSat to test technologies it has developed for the future launch of a larger earth observation satellite. The team also hopes to apply data acquired from its CubeSat deployment to monitoring of agriculture and coastal areas.
“This is a very exciting moment and an important step in UNOOSA’s movement towards tangible initiatives in our capacity-building efforts. Innovative projects like KiboCUBE can achieve concrete results and have a real impact on space science and technology development for the benefit of all,” said UNOOSA Director Simonetta Di Pippo.