On Friday 4 October 2013, SANSA hosted learners, members of the media and other dignitaries at its Hartebeeshoek facilities. This was to kick off the World Space Week events amidst the space fever that has hit our country. This is part of the 14th annual "World Space Week" which runs from 4 October to 10 October, both are key dates in space history.
The Soviet Union launched the world's first artificial satellite, Sputnik 1, on 4 October 1957, while the Outer Space Treaty, which serves as the foundation of international space law, came into effect on 10 October 1967.
Space may seem a distant reality, but we only have to look around us to see the benefits it has brought to our daily lives. Images from space are now commonly used in plenty of sectors such as weather forecast, agriculture (smart farming), urban planning, monitoring de-forestation or supporting crisis management in case of flooding or large forest fires.
Space also creates unique opportunities to boost the economic performance of our continent. For one, it drives innovation. We can transfer technology from the space sector and create smart technologies and smart production. Spin-offs create further commercial uses which contribute to industrial growth.
(L to R) Dr Sandile Malinga, Dr Phil Mjwara, Dr Woodrow Whitlow and Mr Raoul Hodges inaugurating the new antenna