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29/March/2022   Science

Girls from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan launched nanosatellites into the stratosphere for air pollution analysis

ALMATY-BISHKEK-TASHKENT, March 29. /Dunyo IA/. More than 150 girls from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan, participants of the UniSat (Uni stands for UNICEF, Sat stands for satellite) educational program, launched three ultra-modern nanosatellites into the stratosphere, reports “Dunyo” IA correspondent.

Nanosatellites are a class of small spacecraft whose weight does not exceed 10 kg. They are equipped with several cameras, one with potential to take an elliptical image of the Earth within 4K resolution. During the launch, UniSat nanosatellites allow to take stunning high-resolution images of the Earth and space. Sensors collect data on radiation, pressure, gravity, light and gas composition, and large amounts of data, video and images have been sent back to Earth for analysis.

Today, nanosatellites are being developed in many of the world's leading universities and commercial organizations. UniSat satellites are designed for educational purposes.

Nanosatellites were created by girls as part of a 10-day marathon at KazNU. UniSat participants mastered construction, design, programming, and assembling of spacecraft. They were able to visit the Center for Space Technologies and Remote Sensing of the Earth. The theoretical knowledge gained by the girls was immediately put into practice. Under the guidance of trainers, they designed the bodies of the nanosatellites using 3D modelling and 3D printed them. The girls also programmed the subsystems of the UniSat nanosatellites and tested them in the laboratory before the launch.

Participants were selected from 2,000 girls who had previously taken the UniSat online course, available through this link: UniSat educational programme for girls (UNEPG).  Processing of flight data on the environment received by the nanosatellites during the launch, visualization of data, preparation of a mission report and the use of data for scientific and practical purposes were included into UNICEF - KazNU joint online course. The girls were able to learn teamwork skills, the basics of Linux programming, and listen to leading Kazakh experts in the field of aerospace technology. Active course participants got the opportunity to take part in a practical marathon and launch their nanosatellites into the sky.

“In Uzbekistan, as in other countries of the world, for various reasons, there remains a significant gap between boys and girls in the areas of computer literacy, technical education and careers. UniSat's educational program aims to bridge this gap by engaging and educating girls in relevant science and technology skills. UniSat will help draw the attention of the general public to the gender issue in technology areas among the youth of Uzbekistan. We are sure that by their example the participants of this project will inspire their peers to believe in themselves. They show by personal example that girls can be successful in any field,” said Munir Mammadzade, UNICEF Representative in Uzbekistan.

The UniSat programme is implemented with the support of the UAE-based civil society organization “Dubai Cares”, Clé de Peau Beauté brand and philanthropist Ms. Nazanin Alakia.

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