South Africa's rich tradition in space, dating back to the 1950s, has positioned it as an active participant in the global space arena and a country with unique space infrastructure.
The South African National Space Agency Act, 36 of 2008, mandated the establishment of a National Space Agency to provide for the promotion and use of space and cooperation in space- related activities, foster research in space science, advance scientific engineering through human capital and support the creation of an environment conducive to industrial development in space technologies within the framework of national government policy.
On 9 December 2010, South Africa's space landscape was transformed with the launch of the South African National Space Agency (SANSA). The intent is to converge and optimise resources and maximise the benefits of space services and applications to society.
SANSA comprises a Corporate office which oversees the overall operational capability of SANSA, the Earth Observation directorate (currently based in Pretoria), Space Operations directorate (formerly the Satellite Aplication Centre - located in Hartebeesthoek) and Space Science directorate (former Hermanus Magnetic Observatory - located in Hermanus). These directorates each possess a rich history that they bring to SANSA and you can read more about them on the respective directorate pages on this site.