Visit by ECFA delegation to the Egyptian Space Agency
On March 17, 2021, a delegation of ECFA members visited the Egyptian Space Agency, located near the new administrative capital. They were received by Prof. Dr. Mohamed Al-Qousi, CEO of the Agency, and his assistants, as the delegation conducted an inspection tour of the Agency’s facilities, including the Satellite Assembly Center (under construction) which is scheduled to be inaugurated in March 2022 and will be the first of its kind in the region. In this context, the CEO of the Agency, which was established in 2019, gave an explanation of the Agency’s missions and its role in serving the sustainable development goals, including the manufacture of satellites and the building of human cadres capable of transferring and consolidating satellite technology in cooperation with major space agencies. The People’s Republic of China provided major technical and financial support for the establishment of the Agency, which precincts host the African Space Agency which is currently under construction.
In the same context, Dr. Al- Qousi indicated that at the domestic level, the educational moon model for universities was finalized thanks to joint funding with the Academy of Scientific Research, and that about 31 agreements have already been signed to provide this model for the faculties of engineering, computer science, and science, to cover all Egyptian governorates, as there will be a space lab where the moon model represents its nucleus in each faculty. At the international level, the Agency participated in the Task Group on Establishing a Constellation of Small Satellites that measures the plasma conditions in the ionosphere, in cooperation with the United Nations COSPAR and co-funded by the Agency and the Academy of Scientific Research and Technology, to be finalized by the end of 2023.
On the other hand, Chinese experts are cooperating with the Agency’s experts to build the “EgyptSat-2” satellite, in order to benefit from the Chinese expertise in technology transfer. Germany is also cooperating with the Agency in manufacturing the “NexSat-1”, as the Egyptian participation percentage is 45%, to be launched in the second half of next year. In “NexSat-2”, this percentage is set to reach 60%, and then 80% for “NexSat-3”, all of which are remote sensing satellites in cooperation with the German side. In addition, Ambassador Dr. Mounir Zahran, ECFA Chairman, delivered a speech at the Agency’s headquarters in which he expressed gratitude for the Agency’s CEO and his assistants, as well as ECFA appreciation for what they have accomplished in a short period of time since the Agency’s establishment.