The South African National Space Agency (SANSA) was established in 2010. Following a period of rapid growth and transition the agency has made significant advancements towards addressing its mandate of deriving greater value from space science and technology for the benefit of South African society.

Support Services to NASA’s – LADEE mission

on . Posted in SANSA Space Operations News

ladee-spacecraft-moon-illustrationImage Credit: NASA Ames/Dana Berry

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) launched the LADEE spacecraft on a Minotaur V vehicle during a five-day launch period that started on September 6, 2013. The LADEE mission is divided into mission phases: Launch, Ascent, Activation and Checkout, Phasing Orbits, Lunar Orbit Insertion, Commissioning, Science, and Decommissioning.

South African National Space Agency (SANSA) has been supporting the mission as of the launch date. The SANSA Space Operations directorate was contracted by the Swedish Space Corporation (SSC) to support what promises to be NASA grand mission to the moon. "Our facilities, the technical knowledge and our team's years of expertise in supporting missions of such magnitude are what attracted NASA to us. We also have a 12 metre antenna that's much bigger than the ones usually used as the size of the antenna creates more gain and reduces the risk of the mission. Our location in the Southern Hemisphere also plays in our favour on this mission," explains Tiaan Strydom, Business Development Manager at SANSA Space Operations.

SANSA CEO receives Old Rhodian award

on . Posted in SANSA News

Rhodes University held their Old Rhodian Awards this weekend to Old Rhodians who through their individual actions and achievements have enhanced the reputation of the University. The Award is specifically intended to acknowledge Old Rhodians as role models and in essence is the greater family of Rhodes rewarding one of their own.

Dr Malinga1

Among the list of distinguished guests who received awards is the CEO of the South African National Space Agency, Dr. Sandile Malinga. He received the Old Rhodian Award at a function in Grahamstown on 24 August 2013.

Dr Malinga, holds a PhD in Physics from Rhodes University and is passionate about ontributing towards making the young Space agency a successful contributor to developing the knowledge economy of South Africa. As the first head of the Agency he is determined to leave a legacy for the youth of this country and has always been committed to encouraging the uptake of science and mathematics among learners and students through his mentorship of young scientists.

Dr Malinga encompasses everything that we should be striving for in role models from our graduates in this country. He has contributed to the South African Academic sector, the National Facility sector, the communities of all the towns in which he has lived, and to the nation through his current position.

Dr Malinga completed his honours degree, MSc and PhD degrees in Physics at Rhodes University and was the first black PhD candidate in Space Physics in South Africa. As well as being a graduate of Physics, Dr Malinga was first a sub warden and then a residence warden at Rhodes for a number of years. During that time he mentored many young students, and was seen as a role model for what it is possible to achieve.

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