Philippine Standard Time

Monday 22nd of April 2024

Our Place in Space

Volume 2: Space Technologies

Space capabilities contribute to national imperatives by strengthening the knowledge economy, supporting national security, and advancing scientific discovery. In Volume 2: Space Technologies, we showcase the underlying technology components and infrastructure, i.e. the upstream space segment, that enable the generation, processing and utilization of space data. From the satellite “bus”, payloads, assembly/integration/test (AIT) to the calibration and validation of satellite instruments, these activities and capabilities facilitate the generation of data and the provision of downstream services. One of the cornerstones upon which the Philippine Space Agency (PhilSA) is built has been our prior work on building small satellites, Diwata-1, Diwata-2, Maya-1 and Maya-2. Since our engineers and scientists have been involved in the hands-on development of these space systems, we have gained access to underlying technologies and know-how that we will use to our country’s advantage in building many more useful and productive things.
Upstream space technologies proffer opportunities to forge high technology industries, with a capacity to build advanced, high reliability products and/or their components. If satellite imagery data is like water, then satellites are like the pipes and plumbing. Seldom do we care about the pipes and the plumbing, so long as we get the water flowing into our homes. However, one who knows the pipes and its intricacies can and does have the ability to determine the flow and the quality of the water. Obtaining and retaining know-how in upstream space technologies and cascading them to local design and manufacturing services will help put us on a path of building stronger industries in aerospace, semiconductor, electronics, mechanical and materials, among others, that enhance our country’s global market position and competitiveness. Investments in strengthening domestic capabilities in this area can bring about more high value industrial activity.
In this volume, we also show the ground-based systems that enable us to communicate with and process the data from satellites. This infrastructure is part of the “plumbing” that works in the background and is largely invisible from an end user perspective, which we now shine a spotlight on and bring to the forefront.