Inaugural Professorial Address of Prof Beatrice Olutoyin Opeolu Official start: August 26 @ 6:00 pm. Duration: 3h 30m

Tuesday, 14 May 2019

Space agency board visits CPUT

FACT FINDING: Board members of the South African National Space Agency recently visited the CPUT space engineering programme and were welcomed by the university’s management. FACT FINDING: Board members of the South African National Space Agency recently visited the CPUT space engineering programme and were welcomed by the university’s management.

To kick off their roadshow, Board members of the South African National Space Agency (SANSA) visited the Bellville Campus recently to learn more about the pioneering work done by the CPUT Space Programme.

Vice-Chancellor, Prof Chris Nhlapho, said space engineering is a field in which CPUT wants to be a big player for the development of not only the continent but the world. Nhlapo added that a spinoff company, have emerged from the university’s initiatives.

Launched in 2018, AMAYA Space is CPUT’s own space company which aims to become the first fully-represented South African space enterprise.

SANSA board chairperson Xoliswa Kekana said CPUT is the first institution to be visited by the seven-month-old board because of the university’s work in the space engineering discipline.

Kekana added that SANSA was in the process of defining a strategy for the agency.

“We are spending two days in Cape Town so as to understand this area of space,” she said. “And we look to CPUT.”

SANSA CEO, Dr Val Munsami, said CPUT has been identified as Africa’s hub for space engineering.

To indicate how crucial CPUT’s role is in space engineering F’SATI director, Prof Robert Van Zyl, said the university is mentioned between 15 to 20 times in the national Department of Science and Technology’s Strategic Plan.

Van Zyl added that CPUT has been selected as part of Pan African University (PAU) network on the basis of excellence of its Space Programme. Officially launched in 2011, the PAU is a postgraduate training and research network of university nodes that are supported by the African Union.

The network aims to provide opportunities for advanced graduate training and postgraduate research to high-performing African students.

Van Zyl and Francois Visser took the board members on a tour of the labs. They were also shown the qualification mode of ZACube-2, which Van Zyl said having it makes testing the cube satellite easy.

Written by Kwanele Butana

Email: butanak@cput.ac.za

Provides coverage for the Business and Management Sciences and Education Faculties, Student Affairs Department and Cape Town and Mowbray Campuses.