Monday, January 10, 2022

University of Nairobi, University of Arizona and Space Trust have partnered  to develop a series of Earth-orbiting space craft built by university students as a frontier for peace. The peace satellite project, 0G2030, which stands for zero gravity, aligns itself with the UN 2030 agenda for sustainable development.


At the heart of the project, there is CubeSat which will be developed by the University of Nairobi students in collaboration with students of University of Arizona with mentorship provided by faculty from both universities. The CubeSats are small satellites that provide a user-friendly and cost-effective platform for getting hardware and software into space.


The UoN students have satellite design and development experience from the 1KUNS satellite, the first CubeSat mission of the Kenya Space Agency, and the University of Arizona students have learned from working on CatSat1, a CubeSat currently being developed.


On Oct 23, 2021, The two universities participated in an international symposium where they discussed the development of the UArizona CatSAt1 and the UoN CubeSat platform, and exchanged experiences including current progress and the applications of this technology to the planned 0G2030 CubeSat.


"I'm most excited about continuing our CubeSat development in collaboration with our Kenyan colleagues," Prof.  Dante Lauretta said. "Through this unique opportunity, students will build a one-unit CubeSat that will serve as a pathfinder project. They will gain hands-on experience on how to ship, test and commission an actual space satellite." noted Chief Scientist, Principal Investigator of the NASA’s OSIRIS-Ex, University of Arizona.


"Our students will gain experience in design of mobile applications that help incorporate, integrate and disseminate satellite data such as peace messages and develop and transform it into a three-unit CubeSat," said Prof.  Mwangi Mbuthia, principal investigator of the Nanosatellite Platform for the University of Nairobi. Mbuthia is a professor of engineering and holds the Kenya Space Agency Research Chair at the University of Nairobi.


The 0G2030 mission project aims to:

        1. Advocate its founding principle of making space the new frontier for peace and to utilize outer space for innovative space diplomacy on earth.

        2. Provide the people on earth with an experience similar to astronauts- viewing the earth from above and realizing its fragility-the overview effect

        3. Foster international cooperation

        4. Transmit messages of peace in orbit and broadcast them around the world, which will be uploaded in the voices of world leaders, space industry leaders, leaders of multi-lateral bodies, peacemakers, religious leaders, civil society and youth‎ to promote space as a sustainable tool for peace-making on Earth, at the advent of democratization of space.

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