UNICEF and Al-Farabi Science and Technology Park launched a nanosatellite to the stratosphere

02 November 2020
Launch of nanosatellites

30 October 2020, Nur-Sultan – Today 20 girls, participants of the UniSat educational programme, launched one cutting-edge nanosatellite using a helium balloon to the stratosphere.

The UniSat is an educational programme of the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) and the Science and Technology Park of Al-Farabi Kazakh National University (Al-Farabi KazNU). Within this programme 20 girls aged 14 to 35 years from different regions of Kazakhstan have undertaken courses on the creation of nanosatellites within five months in the Science and Technology Park of Al-Farabi KazNU. The course has covered such important stages of creating any spacecraft as engineering, design, programming, assembling, testing and launch.

The aim of UniSat programme is to develop the knowledge and competencies of girls in the development of nanosatellites, as well as to improve such skills as teamwork, public speaking, time management and creativity.

Nanosatellites are a class of small spacecraft whose weight does not exceed than 10 kg. Today, nanosatellites are being developed at many of the world's leading universities and commercial organizations. The UniSat satellites are designed for educational purposes. It has several cameras, one with a potential to take the elliptical image of the earth within 4K resolution.

After the launch the nanosatellite took stunning, high-resolution images of earth and the cosmos. Sensors gathered data on radiation, pressure, gravity, light and gas composition, and reams of data, video and images were beamed back to earth for analysis.

Through a landmark partnership between UNICEF and the Al-Farabi Science and Technology Park, 20 girls and young women learned 3D modeling, PCB design, software and hardware development skills, communication, and Linux programming basics from leading aerospace experts.

“The UniSat initiative demonstrates girls and women’s potential to push the frontiers of science and technology”, said Arthur van Diesen, UNICEF Representative in Kazakhstan. “Today’s launch of nano-satellite is not only a huge achievement for the girls and women who participated in our project. It also carries great symbolic value and we hope that it will inspire many girls in Kazakhstan to pursue their education and their career in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.”

For the participants, the programme helped to gain confidence and new ideas for their future.

Looking forward, UNICEF plans to scale up the project through innovative crowdfunding and sponsorship, as well enhancing the satellites themselves.

# Notes for editors

About UNICEF: The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) protects the rights and well-being of every child in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries to help the most vulnerable and disadvantaged children. For more information about UNICEF and its work in Kazakhstan, visit www.unicef.org/kazakhstan. Follow UNICEF Kazakhstan on InstagramFacebook and Twitter.

About Science and Technology Park of Al-Farabi KazNU

Technopark is directly integrated with the activities of Al-Farabi Kazakh National University - the flagship of the country's university system for the preparation of competitive highly qualified personnel. Technopark has specialized research equipment for applied and fundamental research in natural and technical sciences (physics, mathematics, chemistry, biology, and many others).


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ЮНИСЕФ осуществляет свою деятельность в целях обеспечения прав и благополучия каждого ребенка. Совместно со своими партнерами ЮНИСЕФ действует в 190 странах и территориях мира в целях претворения в жизнь своих обязательств, уделяя при этом особое внимание проблеме охвата наиболее обездоленных и изолированных детей; на благо детей, во всех уголках мира.

Подробности о деятельности ЮНИСЕФ на сайте www.unicef.org.

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