Nigeria Launches First African Built Imagery Satellite
[Satellite TODAY 10-04-11] Nigeria has launched NigeriaSat-X – the first satellite designed and built in Africa and the second of two Earth observation satellites that the country has recently launched, Nigerian officials confirmed Oct. 2.
NigeriaSat-X is the country’s fourth satellite and is the result of a training agreement between the National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA) and manufacturer Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd. (SSTL). NASRDA said 26 Nigerian engineers attended a training program over an eighteen-month period at the satellite developer’s offices in the United Kingdom.
Separately, the first high-resolution satellite imagery was released Oct. 2 from NigeriaSat-2, as engineers from NASRDA and SSTL completed testing of all the systems on-board the spacecraft. “Calibration of the imaging payloads is ongoing with outstanding results already being produced,” NASRDA officials said.
NASRDA also said it plans to harness the satellite’s new capabilities and fast image downloading to map Nigeria in detail every four months.