Kenya Space Agency
1st Kenya University Nano Satellite Precursor Flight

Space activities in Kenya are sector placed in a number of Government agencies and institutions that play a key role in the utilisation of space applications. These applications give data for socio-economic development in agriculture, tourism, urban planning, disaster early warning, weather forecasts and environmental management.
Kenya’s Ministry of Defence currently hosts the Kenya Space Agency pursuant to Legal Notice No 22 of 7th March, 2017. The Legal Notice gives the Ministry the overall mandate to promote, coordinate and regulate national space activities.
Recently, a satellite was designed, built, tested and prepared for launch by students of the University of Nairobi School of Engineering and the University of Rome- La Sapienza, Department of Astronautics, Electrical and Energetics Engineering. This initiative was developed through a broad international cooperation, in which the two universities successfully presented proposals for the development of satellites. The challenge floated to all space actors around the globe was presented by the Japanese Space Exploration Agency (JAXA) in collaboration with the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA), who provided support for the satellite development and subsequently its launch, under the framework of the Kibo-Cube programme.
The satellite dubbed; 1st Kenya University Nano Satellite Precursor Flight (1KUNSPF) has been handed over to the Japanese Space Exploration Agency (JAXA) at the Tsukuba Space Centre. It is to be launched aboard the International Space Station, from the Japanese experimental module Kibo.
According to Prof Santoni, Director of the Joint International Postgraduate Course, this initiative was established with the Kenyan colleagues, as an innovative tool for building capacity in aerospace in developing countries. The aim is to build capacity locally at an institutional level, involving local personnel, experts and institutions in the definition of the course contents and teaching activity.
Prof. Mbuthia, Dean of the School of Engineering at the University of Nairobi acknowledges that the resources and support provided by UNOOSA, JAXA, Kenya Space Agency, University of Rome – La Sapienza and the University of Nairobi embody the spirit of international cooperation to achieve noble and peaceful outcomes from space technology. The Kenya Space Agency lead scientist Dr. John Kimani, acknowledges that building aerospace capacity has become a priority for Kenya.

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