University of Khartoum Space Research Centre participates in UN/United Arab Emirates High Level Forum:

“Space as a driver for socio-economic sustainable development”

Organized by the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs and the United Arab Emirates. The forum was hosted by the United Arab Emirates Space Agency and the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre. The forum was held between 6 – 9 November 2017 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

University of Khartoum SRC participated with a presentation entitled the “Space Technology for Sustainable Development in Sudan” Initiative at University of Khartoum. The “Space Technology for Sustainable Development in Sudan” is an initiative by young scientists at the Space Research Centre of University of Khartoum to bring together students, researchers and lecturers who utilize space technologies for sustainable development activities. The initiative aims to raise awareness about the capabilities of space technology for developing countries, build capacity in the utilization of space technology for sustainable development, bring together researchers and students who utilize space related data in their research, and identify common challenges for researchers at University of Khartoum and work to achieve solutions.

 

University of Khartoum Space Research Centre, in collaboration with World Space Week Association (WSWA) and Space Generation Advisory Council (SGAC) organized a seminar in celebration of World Space Week entitled “Space Year Recap 2017”. The theme of the event was to give talks covering the hottest topics of the space industry with focus on topics that match World Space week theme of 2017 which was “Exploring New worlds in Space”.

The event was opened with a talk from Prof. Sharief F. Baibikir, the Director of the Space Research Centre at University of Khartoum. Prof. Sharief emphasized the importance of space for our life. He also mentioned how space race was part of everyone’s life specially the young one’s. Then, Eng. Rayan Imam and Eng. Hanadi Abdalla, who are Researchers at the Space Research Centre, and also the National Points of Contact for Space Generation Advisory Council in Sudan, introduced World Space Week. They talked about its history and why the dates 4-10 of each year were selected to celebrate World Space Week. They also introduced Space Generation Advisory Council and the Space Research Centre activities and Objectives.

The technical talks covered the following topics: Cassini Mission, Dawn Mission, Moon Race, ISS, Launch Vehicles, The Great American Eclipse, and Space Books & Movies. The session was concluded with Discussion and Comments from the attendees and the presenters.

The Space Research Centre presented a paper at the prestigious International Astronautical Congress (IAC) which was held this year between 25-29 September 2017 in Adelaide, Australia. The International Astronautical Congress is an annual conference that brings together all the important players in space industry. This year’s congress targeted area was “secure access to satellites that provide communications, timing and navigation services and remote sensing data”.

Researcher, Rayan Imam, from the Space Research Centre presented a paper entitled “onboard mission scheduling for the camera subsystem of uoksat-3” from the research going on for UOKSat-3. Paper abstract can be found in this link.

In addition to that, she attended the Space Generation Congress (SGC) which is held every year in conjunction with the International Astronautical Congress and it is organized by the Space Generation Advisory Council (SGAC). The 16th SGC 2017 brought together 150 delegates of the top students and young professionals with passion in space to promote the voice of the next generation of space sector leaders on the topic of international space development.

The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs Organized the symposium on “Access to Space: Holistic Capacity Building for the 21st Century” in Graz, Austria on 6-9 September 2017. The symposium aims to discuss innovative approaches to capacity-building in the space domain, particularly in the areas of policy, applications and technology, identification of partners, tools for capacity building and funding opportunities. The symposium output will be providing recommendations to COPUOS for UNISPACE+50 concerning the 7th Thematic Priority “Capacity-building for the twenty-first century” which is the most cross-cutting thematic priority for the implementation of UNISPACE+50.

University of Khartoum Space Research Centre participated in this symposium with a presentation about the “Availability of Space Science and Technology Infrastructure in Africa” under the Infrastructure for Capacity-Building session. The presentation tried to answer many questions regarding what is available in Africa related to space science and technology, for example which African countries have their space agencies/programmes? Which have managed to put spacecrafts on orbit? Which have cubesat projects at universities and research centre? Have they built capacity capable of running these space activities? How many of them are really contributing to the knowledge? What is the size of infrastructure that is available in Africa now? And where does Africa go for capacity building in the fields of space science and technology?

In 2016, Hammam Najeib Elkheir and Hanadi Mohamed Mirghani have completed their graduation project thesis under the supervision of the Space Research Centre- University of Khartoum. The project was concerned with CubeSats and specifically about the CubeSats’ power system. The thesis was titled “Maximizing solar energy input for CubeSat using maximum power point tracker and sun tracking system”. The aim of the project was to come up with a design in the power system of UOKSat-3 that will contribute in enhancing the amount of incoming solar energy and the amount of the extracted electrical energy from the solar cells. The thesis document can be found on this link

The project was nominated as one of the top 3 projects in the Electrical and Electronics Engineering Department, Faculty of Engineering, University of Khartoum. From among other competing projects, the CubeSat power system project ranked second. In addition to that, this project was also nominated for the best bachelor project in the Faculty of Engineering competing with other remarkable projects from various engineering disciplines.

In January 2017, a paper from the CubeSat power system dissertation was published at the IEEE International Conference on Communication, Control, Computing, and Electronic Engineering (ICCCCEE 2017) which was held in Friendship hall - January, 2017. The paper proposed a modification that could be implemented in the power system unit of the CubeSat as the thesis discussed. The abstract can be found on this link.

In August, 2017 the project was nominated for Sudan’s prize of innovation in engineering and computer colleges. The project was in competition with the best graduation projects from all Sudan universities and has won the first place in the category of communication engineering. The ceremony was held in Friendship hall in 26th of August 2017.

University of Khartoum Space Research Centre organized a late asteroid day in Khartoum in collaboration with Space Generation Advisory Council (SGAC). The program contained a seminar on Asteroids and meteorites in Sudan, and visits to two public primary schools.

The seminar was held at University of Khartoum, Faculty of Science on July 30th. It attracted audience that varied from university professors, students, professionals, and amateurs. The seminar featured three speakers on technical presentation in addition to an opening speech and a discussion session. The opening speech was presented by Miss Rayan Imam, a Researcher at the Space Research Centre and also the National Point of Contact (NPoC) for SGAC in Sudan. She introduced the Day organizers and talked about the Space Research Centre at University of Khartoum and its current activities. Also, she talked about SGAC and its objectives, network, projects and activities. She invited the interested students and young professionals to join the organization and help build a space generation network in Sudan.

The second speaker Miss Omima Osman, a Lecturer at the Department of Physics with postgraduate degrees in Astrophysics and Cosmology, talked about Asteroids: the remnants of our Galaxy formation. She spoke about the types of asteroids and their chemical composition. She also explained how to distinguish between an asteroid (meteorite after it falls on earth) and other rocks when found on ground.

The next Speaker Dr. Osman Abu Aagla, a Geologist and an expert in Meteorites gave us an interested speech about meteorites that fell in Sudan. His presentation listed almost all the known meteorites of Sudan in the past 50 years. His presentation was supported by pictures of the meteorites or the samples collected from them and also the results of studying these celestial bodies. Dr. Osman also gave the first public announcement of the results of testing the meteorite of Alabbaseya which fell in Sudan on June 20th 2017 just 6 weeks before this event. He also showed the audience a sample of this meteorite. Finally, since there is no complete record or database of Sudan meteorites so far, Dr. Abu Aagla concluded his talk by calling for a project to record all these meteorites in a database.

The last speaker on this event Miss Hanadi abdalla, a Researcher at the Space Research Centre gave a presentation on the space technologies for monitoring and studying Asteroids. She took us on a journey starting from the earth telescopes that detect and monitor asteroids, to the spacecrafts that carry telescopes that are used to monitor asteroids. Then she talked about the spacecrafts that were sent to collects samples of steroids and the ones planned to be sent for asteroids. She concluded her speech with the cubesat missions for asteroids and their current situation and future plans.

The commenters on the seminar thanked the organizers for such informative event that covers many sides of this topic. They also encourage the group to keep organizing such events. The discussion mentioned asteroids as one of the expected reasons of Dinosaurs extinction and discussed the other theories in brief.

The day was concluded by screening a documentary movie about M6 Meteorite (TC3) which fell in Sudan in 2008. TC3 is the first and only asteroid to be monitored before it entered the earth atmosphere. The documentary tells the story from discovering the asteroid through monitoring it entering earth and the process of collected samples of it by University of Khartoum students under the Supervision of Prof Shaddad from the Department of Physics. Then the results of analyzing the asteroid and the scientific value of this asteroid/meteorite to the science community.

The program also featured visits for two primary schools, one for girls and the other one for boys on 31 July 2017 and 3 August 2017 respectively. Both schools are public which means they are less privileged than the private education institutes in Sudan. The visits were organized in collaboration with Education without boarders - Sudan. The presenters, a group of undergraduate students at the Faculty of Science University of Khartoum are Miss Eman Hassa, Mrs Hoyam Badwe, Miss Tagwa Bashier and Miss Hana Almubark. They talked about the solar system generally and asteroids in more details. The talked about where are asteroids located, what are the theories of their existence, why they sometimes hit earth and what is the danger they impose on our planet. Also, the session included an activity for making a solar system model using recycled materials. The pupils had a nice discussion with the instructor and requested more activities on space related topics. For this event, Mr. Hassan, an astronomy amateur kindly lent us his demonstration kit for the solar system which the students very much enjoyed exploring.

Page 1 of 3