A group of fifteen Jordanian students from several universities have built a Cubesat to be launched in early 2018, under the sponsorship of the Masar Initiative, part of Jordanian Crown Prince Hussein’s Crown Prince Foundation (CPF).
The students were supervised by Jordanian engineering and science academics at the Royal Jordanian Radio Amateurs Society (RJRAS), and based on their education at several Jordanian universities and at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s (NASA) Ames Research Centre in California, United States.
One student, Zeid Kawar, spent a two month internship at NASA Ames as part of the Crown Prince’s Masar Initiative, and has used the skills he learned there to help build Jordan’s first indigenously built satellite.
According to Sanad Haddad, Director of the Masar Initiative, the Jordanian Cubesat will broadcast images of Jordanian archaeological and tourist sites to other amateur radio enthusiasts, thought to number over 3 million, around the world. The Cubesat will use the radio call sign JY1, used by the late King Hussein of Jordan in his radio broadcasts.
The construction of the Jordanian Cubesat is the result of deliberate efforts by the Masar Initiative, and the CPF overall, to encourage, nurture, harness, and develop the talents of young Jordanians in the fields of science and technology, and to build the human capacity required for Jordan to develop its economy and society in the coming decades.
With the construction of the Cubesat, Jordanian students have been provided with hands-on experience in the conceptualization, design, and building of the Cubesat, and will be able to see it launch in early 2018.
As well as building the Cubesat at the RJRAS, the students also built a ground station there so that they can also conduct satellite operations once the launch has taken place.
On top of this, the Masar Initiative has plans to start nurturing the next generation of young Jordanians eager to start careers in space technology and science.