On July 7, 2017, the Ghanasat-1 was sent into orbit, making Ghana the first Sub-Saharan African country to launch a satellite into space. Built by three students at All Nations University College (ANUC) in Koforidua, Ghana over the course of two years, the Cubesat satellite represents Ghana’s ability to conduct environmental exploration and to monitor activities from space. The satellite was launched by SpaceX at Kennedy Space Center in Florida and arrived at the International Space Station before it was sent into orbit. Richard Damoah (GESTAR/MSU) is Project Coordinator and Director of the Space Systems Technology Laboratory at ANUC. Dr. Damoah is also an Associate Research Scientist at NASA Goddard Flight Center, and previously was involved with installing an AERONET system atop one of the ANUC buildings.
This significant achievement was covered by multiple news agencies, including the BBC; read more at the following links and see Dr. Damoah interviewed in the YouTube video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6_VxdWZK1G4.
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, in Greenbelt, Maryland, has been in operation for 50 years -- chartered on May 1, 1959. The Goddard Space Flight Center is a major U.S. laboratory for developing and operating unmanned scientific spacecraft. During the past 50-years, Goddard has been at the forefront in exploration, in technological achievement, in space science, and in studying the Earth as a system.
GESTAR conducts research collaboratively, mainly within NASA GSFC's Earth Sciences Division, but also with Solar Systems Exploration Division, Office of Education, and Office of Public Affairs. Scientists and staff at GESTAR, in collaboration with NASA and other investigators, conceive and develop new, space-based missions; provide mission requirements; conduct research that explains the behavior of Earth and other planetary systems; and create engaging media that tell NASA's story of exploration and discovery on Earth and beyond.
Universities Space Research Association (USRA) is an independent, nonprofit research corporation where the combined efforts of in-house talent and university-based expertise merge to advance space science and technology. USRA works across disciplines including biomedicine, astrophysics, and engineering and integrates those competencies into applications ranging from fundamental research to facility management and operations. USRA engages the creativity and authoritative expertise of the research community to develop and deliver sophisticated, forward-looking solutions to Federal agencies and other government sponsors.