Egyptian Space Agency celebrated the production of the country’s first educational satellites (Space Keys) along with several other dignitaries. In attendance were Dr Khaled Abdel Ghaffar, Egyptian Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research along with the CEO of EgSA, Dr Muhammed Al Qousi, and Dr Mohamed Ibrahim, head of the implementation and satellite testing sector.
Space Keys was conceived to enhance space innovation across 32 engineering and science colleges across Egypt. In addition, the project received support and funding from EgSA and the Egyptian Academy of Science and Technology. Space innovation laboratories are scheduled to be opened at each faculty of engineering at Ain Shams University, Arab Academy of Science, Technology and Maritime Transport and Helwan University.
Dr Khaled Abdul Ghaffar said: “The initiative falls within the framework of the joint space programme between the EgSA and Egyptian universities, to consolidate space technology in different universities, leading to a progressive plan for sustainable development by 2030. To this end, it is necessary to implement projects and create affiliations with different parties to ensure that the goal is met.”
He hailed the project as a key avenue to create synergies between the government and universities and to raise the level of awareness of students towards space technology.
Dr Abdul Ghaffar also pointed out that the Egyptian space programme introduced by the government aims to build human and scientific capabilities, help in infrastructure and industrial development, build space missions systems, engage in outer space exploration, and foster cooperation with foreign space agencies. To date, Egypt has entered cooperation agreements with numerous countries and organisations with exceptional experience in several space fields. Furthermore, Egypt has partnered with several universities and research institutes that align with the objectives of the National Space Programme and the development of the right human resources in different space fields.
Space Keys is an educational satellite developed by the EgSA to guide the operation of space innovation in the colleges of engineering and sciences in various Egyptian universities.
Dr Al Qousi, CEO of EgSA, explained that the AfDev satellite project will be introduced to five African countries that have joined the agency (Ghana, Kenya, Uganda, Nigeria, Sudan) to implement the African development satellite project to measure and monitor climate change.
Dr Mohamed Ibrahim, head of the implementation and satellite testing sector, and project manager, stated that Space Keys will address many challenges within the National Space Programme, including capacity building and strengthening international relations to ensure that Egypt becomes a regional centre of science and technology for Africa.