It all began with the appointment of Dr. Felix Babatunde Obada as a Consultant to the University of Surrey Satellite Technology Space Centre, Guilford, United Kingdom. This followed a crash program he successfully completed on Space Science and Technology under the tutelage of Prof. Martin Sweeten of Surrey Satellite Technology Limited (SSTL) and the signing of contract agreement with the Federal Government of Nigeria and support from the British government for Nigeria to launch a mini satellite into the Low Earth Orbit.
Dr Felix Babatunde Obada here, welcoming the future Space Scientists to his board room at 159a Isale Eko Avenue, Dolphin Estate, Ikoyi, Lagos, Nigeria; where 15 successful candidates were picked after a nationwide aptitude test.
The first set of Nigerian Space Scientists set to undergo the final selection process.
Dr Felix Obada clarifies a point on the adopted selection criteria. Seated immediately to his left is Dr. Wei Sun of Surrey Space Centre.
Dr Wei Sun and Col Wali who represented the Nigerian Military on the national space program.
The representative of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN), making his remark at the final selection event.
SSTL Space Scientists agree final selection criteria with the Professor representing the University of Nigeria Nsukka.
Members of the selection committee drawn from various institutions of higher learning in Nigeria, at the final selection event.
Representatives of University of Nigeria, Nsukka and the Nigeria Intelligence Agency (NIA) respectively, at the final selection event
Arrival of Johnson Asinugo (left), a former staff of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), USA and Prof. Ajayi Boroffice (second left), DG National Space Research and Development Agency.
Dr Felix Obada and Prof Borrofice listening attentively as Dr. Wei Sun spoke at the final selection event.
Dr Wei Sun, head of SSTL delegation making her welcome remarks, while Col. Wali a representative of the Nigerian Military, paid attention.
Dr. Wei Sun, SSTL Team Lead and Col Wali, representative of the Nigerian Military at the selection event
The representative of the Federal Ministry of Science & Technology making an observation at the final selection event.
Dr Wei Sun listen attentively to one of the future Space Scientists.
Dr. Wei Sun listen attentively as someone makes a point at the final selection event.
Team ‘A’ members working on their creativity and cognitive design under the watchful eyes of the lady representing the Nigeria Intelligence Agency.
Team ‘B’ members select their Team Lead.
Members of Team ‘C’ Space Engineers at the final selection event.
The winning innovative design.
Team ‘B’ Lead explaining the principles of his team’s design.
A demonstration of satellite propulsion by an SSTL Space Scientist.
SSTL Space Scientists relax after an exhaustive session.
Prof. P.N. Okeke, representative of Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, making his remark at the commencement of Day 2 selection event.
SSTL Space Scientist listening attentively to arguments on design options.
Dr Wei Sun, Dr Obada and Prof Boroffice during Day 2 lunch break.
Dr Felix Babatunde Obada in a tete-a-tete with the Prof representing UNN after a rigorous selection exercise.
Olusola Obada, Prof Ajayi Boroffice and Dr Wei Sun relax following a rigorous selection exercise.
Pioneer Nigerian Space Engineers standing behind the NigeriaSat-1 Flight Model at the SSTL Clean Room, Guilford, United Kingdom.
Space Engineers at work at the SSTL Clean Room where the NigeriaSat-1 was assembled.
Three of the six satellites launched piggy-back in September 2003.Directly in front is the NigeriaSat-1.
Loading of NigeriaSat-1 into the decommissioned Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) in Russia, September 2003; the ICBM having been decommissioned for peaceful commercial application.
Final preparation of the launch vehicle for the NigeriaSat-1 in Russia.
The successful flight of the NigeriaSat-1 into the Low Earth Orbit on 27th September 2003, Plesetsk, Russia, under a 7-nation constellation, handled by a Russian firm, Cosmos.
After the successful launch and deployment over a period of 3 years, the NigeriaSat-1, in a constellation of 6 other satellites, having a revisit time of 6 hours, is used to capture the devastation of hurricane Katherina in New Orleans, USA, August 2005. Nigeria thus has an ‘eye’ in the orbit.
Following the successful launch of NigeriaSat-1 remote sensing satellite, Nigeria has further developed and launched a telecommunications satellite into the geostationary orbit, giving Nigeria an ‘ear’ in the orbit. With the success of the space program Nigeria was able to successfully migrate Government businesses from analogue to digital technology, a program championed by Dr. Felix Babatunde Obada in collaboration with the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), a parastatal under the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology which eventually birthed the National eGovernment Initiative as contained in the letter attached below: