Broadcast 3700 Temidayo Oniosun

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Guest:  Temidayo Oniosun;  Topics: Space in Arica (see https://spaceinafrica.com);  African space policy, plans, projects, satellites and the corresponding industry, commercial space, African space fairing nations, investment, education and more.  A comprehensive overlay of the African space industry, public and private.

We welcomed Temidayo Oniosun, the Managing Director of Space In Africa to our program to introduce us to the African space industry and opportunities that are developing on the African continent.  Mr. Oniosun started us off with a brief introduction to Space In Africa including the African space fairing nations, governments, policy, business opportunities and value chain issues for space activities throughout the region.  We had one call during the show, from Marshall, and we fielded multiple email questions for our guest.  One thing Temidayo was quick to point out early on was the fact that annual African space revenues were now around $7.37 billion.  He then said the projection for 2024 was more than $10 billion in space revenues.  He said they operated with a $500 million annual budget.  He also quickly pointed out that Africa had no launch capability, a fact we discussed in detail later in the program.  For launches, our guest said they did international partnerships with Europe, Japan, China and so far one with the U.S.  Temidayo went on to describe some of the satellite characteristics based on size in partnership with China and Europe.

Listener Jane sent in the first email from Denver wanting to know about education in Africa, especially in the space related fields.  Listen to our guest on this matter plus he had more to say about this later on.  One thing he said that for most space related graduate programs students have to leave the country as those programs are not yet widely available at African universities.  The next email came from Todd wanting to know if the general population throughout all of Africa had an average or above average space awareness background.  The short answer was no but listen to all of what our guest had to say about this topic.

For the next part of our discussion, our attention turned to the private sector component of the African space sector.  Paul sent in a note asking about capital acquisition and raising money.  Temidayo did address this with a 2019 American example.  It is happening and he predicted the component of private capital for investment in space will increase in the coming years for African investment and opportunities.  Our guest was quick to point out that investment was needed in fundamental technologies. 

Listener Kim in Los Angeles sent in a note asking if benefit sharing was in place with the space nations and those that were not space fairing.  This would concern space resources and potential income regarding the space fairing African nations along with telemedicine and advanced agricultural technologies derived from space, GPS and new satellite functions.  Other issues that came up for discussion included budget matters, space tourism, returning to the Moon, space settlement and going to Mars.  Our guest pointed out that African space priorities were focused on infrastructure, satellites and the basics.  This was an interesting part of the discussion so be sure to hear it.  You might want to post your comments about the African space priorities on our blog.  Returning to education in Africa, our guest said that the African Union had some courses but mostly relating to terrestrial types of technology and engineering.  Space technologies and education were developing in the region but ready for prime time.  With about 22 African nations having some sort of space activity within the borders, our guest was asked if the states compete with one another or unify for space.  The answer was unify.  Once again, don't miss what was said about this vis a vis the space fairing states and those that share in benefits but do not directly yet engage in space activities. 

I asked our guest for a five year and ten year plan for Space in Africa.  He did go over a type of five year plan which you should hear.  He also offered up a ten year plan which he said was very speculative.  When asked to provide us with a short summary of today's program, he suggested that the U.S government pay more attention to space in Africa with commercial activities, diplomatic developments and investment.  Before the program ended, our guest received a last minute email about Starlink and OneWebb in Africa.  He thought it was a good idea but was concerned that the pricing would be too high for most people.  I then asked him about 5G in Africa and told him about the programs I did last year with European companies doing 5G constellations to service Africa.  Temidayo said that comsats were a big market throughout Africa.  He had a few other things to say about comsats so listen to the end of the program for the final comments from our guest.

Please post your comments/questions for Temidayo on our blog for this show.  You can reach him though the Space in Africa website provided earlier in this summary or through me.

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African space program, space throughout the region

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04 Jun 2021 Temidayo Oniosun
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