The University Management on Friday, 4th July received in audience the representatives of National Space Research and Development Agency, Abuja (NARSDA), led by its Workshop and General Services Manager, Engineer Salah Abubakar Umar at the Vice-Chancellor’s Office, Main Campus, Ago-Iwoye.On the entourage were also the Head of Engineering Unit, Engineer Alesinloye Adeyemi, and the Head of Information and Communication Technology Unit, Mr. Suleiman Abdulraham.
Receiving the team, the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Ganiyu Olatunji Olatunde, on behalf of the University, warmly welcomed the guests and expressed his heartfelt appreciation for the great work they have been doing. He also seized the opportunity to thank the Director General of the Agency, Professor Seidu Mohammed for considering the University as a beneficiary of the research instruments.
In his remarks, Engineer Abubakar Umar who congratulated the Vice-Chancellor on his appointment as the Chief Executive of the University disclosed that the focus areas of NARSDA included the use of Basic Space Science and Technology to provide the understanding of how the universe works and its impact on the world; remote sensing, to help Nigerians understand and manage their environment and natural resources using space-acquired information. He stated that this technology would enable the country tobetter understand its land, air and water resources and their associated problems. According to him, his agency also focused on Satellite Meteorology to study atmospheric and weather sciences using satellite data to facilitate the effective management of its environment. He, therefore, congratulated the University for being a beneficiary of the Centre’s gesture which undoubtedly would promote teaching and research activities in OOU. He stated that the major equipment that his Centre donated to the University was known as Magnetometer and it has already been deployed for research purpose.
He explained that Magnetometer has a Sensor for detecting change in geomagnetic field and a Receiver for reception of data from the sensor as well as telemetry of data to the Space Weather Server that was located at the Centre for Atmospheric Research, National Space Research & Development Agency in Abuja. According to him, the equipment would enable Space Researchers in the University to carry out collaborative Space Weather Research with scientists at the National Space Research & Development Agency and other scientists globally.
Speaking further, Engineer Abubakar recalled that his team had been on tour for over a week around the nation with the aim of creating a network that would effectively detect and report the magnetic conditions around the nation adding that the Centre was the first to deploy Greenhouse measurement across the nation. He added that Space Weather could describe the conditions on the sun, in the solar wind, magnetosphere, ionosphere, and thermosphere that could influence the performance and reliability of the space-borne and ground-based technological systems all of which have the possibility to endanger human life or health.
He went further to explain the importance of conducting research in this field, stating that the adverse conditions in space environment could cause disruption of satellite operations, communications, navigation, and electric power grids which could lead to numerous socio-economic losses. Engr. Abubakar further disclosed that disruptive conditions in Space Weather could have severe and sudden impacts on technological systems, such as damaging space-based satellites, ground-based power systems which were crucial for telecommunication, and disorderly altering Global Positioning Systems (GPS) and Communication Systems over significant regions.
In his own remark, Prof. Victor Chukwuma, a Space Weather Researcher from the Department of Physics, observed that the project which commenced a long time ago was delayed due to lack of fund. He assured the Vice-Chancellor and the management that he was confident that his team of space weather researchers would make good use of the instruments.
In his closing remarks, the Vice-Chancellor once again appreciated the representatives of NARSDA, promising them his full support in their research engagement. At the event were the Deputy Vice-Chancellor Academic, Prof. Deji Agboola, the Registrar, Mr. Femi Ogunwomoju, the University Librarian, Dr. Adebambo Oduwole, the University Bursar, Mr. Semiu Makinde and other University functionaries.