Djibouti successfully launched its first satellite, Djibouti 1A, into orbit aboard SpaceX’s Transporter-9 smallsat rideshare mission on November 11, 2023. The satellite was developed through a joint capacity-building program between Djibouti and its technical partner, the Centre Spatial Universitaire de Montpellier (CSUM).
Djiboutian engineers and technicians designed, built, and tested the satellite in France. This historic launch is a result of Djibouti’s recognition of the importance of developing its technological skills.
Djibouti 1A is an earth observation nanosatellite that will provide the country with real-time data from climatological and seismic stations, allowing for better monitoring and decision-making. The satellite will also offer high-definition spectral information to enhance farming and related activities.
Minister of Higher Education and Research, Mr Nabil Mohamed Ahmed, expressed pride in Djibouti’s accomplishment, stating that the objective was for Djiboutian students to be involved in the satellite’s manufacturing process. Djibouti aims to demonstrate its capability to manufacture, launch, and collect data from a satellite, showcasing its technological progress and development potential.
In addition to this satellite launch, Djibouti signed a Memorandum of Understanding in January 2023 with Hong Kong Aerospace Technology Group Limited and Touchroad International Holdings Group to develop an international commercial spaceport. This further demonstrates Djibouti’s ambition in the field of space development.