By James Sowole in Akure
The Federal University of Technology AkureÂ (FUTA) made history on Saturday when the SpaceX Falcon9 Rocket launched Birds 1 satellite into space from Kennedy Space Centre in Florida,Â USA.
The satellite comprising 5 CubeSats, belonging to Japan, Ghana, Mongolia, Nigeria and Bangladesh, was launched at 10:07am and was watched live by dignitaries who gathered at the university’s campus in Akure,Â Ondo State.
A statement by FUTA’s Head of Publicity and Protocol, Â Mr. Adegbenro Adebanjo, which disclosed details of the project, added that the initial launch of the scientific equipment, scheduled for Thursday June 1, was aborted due to adverse weather condition.
The Nigerian CubeSat, code named NigeriaEdusat-1, is designed, built and owned by the Federal University of Technology Akure (FUTA) in collaboration with the National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA), Abuja, Nigeria, and Kyushu Institute of Technology, Japan, while Mr. Ibukun Adebolu of FUTAâ€™s Department of Mechanical Engineering is the representative of Nigeria on the project.
Adegbenro said the satellite, which was the first ever university satellite to be launched in Nigeria, is expected to dock at the International Space Station (ISS) on Monday June 5 at 10:30am Nigerian time.