CSIR and SANSA to support industrial development in space science

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The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and the South African National Space Agency (SANSA) will continue to work together in fostering research and supporting industrial development in space sciences and technologies.

On 16 October the two organisations renewed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) which will see greater support in strengthening the implementation of the space strategies of the Department of Science and Technology (DST) and the African Union (AU). The first MoU between the CSIR and SANSA was signed in November of 2013.

The renewed agreement was signed in Pretoria by the CSIR CEO, Dr Thulani Dlamini and SANSA CEO Dr Valanathan Munsami.

Together, the organisations aim to maintain and grow South Africa’s rich tradition in space science, dating back to the 1950s, which has positioned the country as an active participant in the global space arena and with unique space infrastructure.

According to the two organisations, the signing of the memorandum is expected to optimise South Africa’s investment in research and development within the space industry and maximise existing benefits of space services and applications for the benefit of society.

Speaking at the signing ceremony, Dr Dlamini hailed the partnership as a significant step towards improving research and to develop new industries in the space sciences and technology areas.
“This partnership will enable us to draw on each other’s research capabilities and infrastructure in order to develop new industries which will positively impact our economy and help us realise our mandate of improving the quality of life of South Africans through science and technology”, said Dr Dlamini.

Dr Munsami said the MoU cemented the existing relationship between the two entities of the DST for the greater benefit to South African citizens in the areas of space science collaboration. He elaborated further, “Space science and technology is integrated into our daily lives and by contributing to industry support in this area, we will impact the future of a rapidly growing industry segment as well as bring immense value to all citizens utilising the technologies associated with space.”