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Yahsat Launches new Satellite for Africa

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United Arab Emirates-based satellite operator Yahsat has launched its third commercial satellite, Al Yah 3, despite a rare anomaly and trajectory deviation leading to a loss of communication in the early stages of the launch.

The Al Yah 3 satellite is supposed to expand Yahsat’s commercial Ka-band coverage to an additional 19 markets in Africa, reaching 60% of the continent’s population, as well as providing coverage to 95% of Brazil.

The Ariane 5 rocket lifted off at 22:20 GMT on 25 January from the Guiana Space Centre in French Guiana carrying two satellites, the SES-14 and Al Yah 3 communications satellites, as well as a hosted payload for NASA.

However, the mission experienced some challenges early on and a trajectory deviation resulted in both satellites being inserted into an orbit that differed from the flight plan.

The SES-14 satellite was supposed to separate from the Ariane 5 rocket 27 minutes into the flight and Al Yah 3 was to separate eight minutes later. At first it seemed SES-14 had separated as planned but the separation of Al Yah 3 could not be confirmed. A tense 25 minutes followed.

Finally, Arianespace CEO Stephane Israel came to the podium to announce Ariane 5 had experienced an “anomaly”. A loss of telemetry had occurred and the satellites’ locations were unclear.

Later, Arianespace confirmed the telemetry issue actually happened nine minutes and 26 seconds into the flight when ground-tracking stations lost contact with the Ariane 5 launcher. Initial investigations show the situation resulted from a trajectory deviation.

“A few seconds after ignition of the upper stage, the second tracking station located in Natal, Brazil, did not acquire the launcher telemetry. This lack of telemetry lasted throughout the rest of powered flight,” Arianespace explained in a statement.

“Subsequently, both satellites were confirmed separated, acquired and they are in orbit. SES-14 and Al Yah 3 are communicating with their respective control centres. Both missions are continuing,” the group added.

Yahsat later confirmed its satellite “is healthy and operating nominally”.

“A revised flight plan will be executed in order to achieve the operational orbit and fulfil the original mission,” Yahsat said.

“We are pleased to know the satellite is healthy, and that the necessary steps are being taken to ensure the original mission is fulfilled,” said Yahsat CEO Masood M Sharif Mahmood.

Al Yah 3, an all Ka-band satellite, is the first hybrid electric propulsion GEOStar-3 satellite completed by American aerospace manufacturer, Orbital ATK.

“Based on data from initial communications, I can report that Al Yah 3 is in orbit, healthy and responding to commands from our mission operations team,” said Frank Culbertson, president of Orbital ATK’s Space Systems Group.

It is still unclear why the rocket and satellites went off course but the Orbital ATK and Yahsat team say they are “working on a strategy to most efficiently get the satellite back into the original planned orbit”.

Post-launch it will be a few months before satellite services are commercially available. Yahsat said operations and testing may range from two to four months. In-orbit testing usually takes six weeks, but it could take an additional week because of the trajectory deviation. SES said that because of the anomaly, its satellite would need an additional four weeks to reach its allocated orbital slot.

The launch anomaly was highly unusual as the Ariane 5 had completed 82 consecutive launches since 2003 without incident. Arianespace has set up an independent investigation commission chaired by the European Space Agency’s general inspector to establish what caused the anomaly.

Despite this, Arianespace says the upcoming launch campaigns currently under way at the Guiana Space Centre will proceed as scheduled.


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FG to Boost Artificial Intelligence

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Federal government on Tuesday announced that it has developed initiatives for the adoption of Artificial Intelligence technology in Nigeria.

FG to Boost Artificial Intelligence

 

The establishment of a Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics in Nigeria (CFAIR) is also expected soon.

The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) said that AI applications enable innovative solutions, improve risk assessment, better planning, and faster knowledge-sharing.

Abdullahi Usman Gambo, director of IT Infrastructure Solution, NITDA, spoke at a workshop in commemoration of International Day for Universal Access to Information (IDUAI) organised by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO).

He noted that AI would open up opportunities for access to information and also help to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set by the United Nations (UN) in the 2030 Agenda.

Gambo said: “Artificial Intelligence is poised to revolutionize the way we go about our daily lives – from governance to business, legislation to medicine to defence, etc. We can all agree that AI is humanity’s new frontier.

“We have developed initiatives for adoption of emerging technologies such as AI, strengthen cybersecurity, digital skills for digitally excluded citizens while enhancing the regulatory and market environment to increase access to ICTs, and promote seamless access to information.

“We believe AI and associated emerging technologies will completely enhance the speed, efficiency and effectiveness of information gathering during the exchange of data or the ways of communication,” he said.

Delivering his paper, Yushau Shuaib, publisher of PRNigeria, described access to information as the right of the citizens to accurate, transparent, and timely facts and figures.

The former National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) spokesman stated that governments at all levels have obligations to communicate with people, while the public has the right to know and criticize authorities through constructive engagement.

The media executive, however, appealed to Nigerians not to use social media platforms for fake news dissemination.

“The merits of new media on affordability, accessibility and instant delivery are occasionally marred by the fact that social media is sometimes used to spread fake news”, he said.

Shuaib called for collaboration of stakeholders in ensuring appropriate legislation through public awareness campaigns in order to improve access to universal information.


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Samsung Unveils Technologically Advanced 2020 Consumer Products

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Samsung Electronics Nigeria has unveiled its 2020 consumer products range. The launch which held in Victoria Island, Lagos showcased the latest in its revolutionary and innovative QLED and Crystal UHD Television Series  along with Wind Free Air Conditioners, Side by Side Refrigerators and Drum Washing Machines.

Keeping with its resolve to utilize its transformative ideas and technologies to shape the future and inspire the whole world, Samsung has once again demonstrated its determination to continuously redefine the living space and entertainment of its customers.

According to Mr. Caden Chiyeon Yu, Managing Director, Samsung Electronics Nigeria, “QLED uses exceptional and revolutionary technology which offers an unparalleled visual and auditory adventure from the comfort of your living room. QLED series is available in 4K or 8K and from 58″ to 98”, and was designed with options to fit any space and budget”. For Crystal UHD Television, Mr. Yu said, with cutting-edge Crystal Display, the new Crystal UHD TV will bring high-resolution content to life in a whole new way, delivering a viewing experience like never before in a mainstream UHD TV.

Also showcased at the launch were the new Windfree Air Conditioner, Drum Washing Machines and Side by Side refrigerators. The Windfree Air Conditioner is designed specially with the latest technology to provide coolness in quick time while ensuring that users don’t experience any chills through out its use. It also has an in-built digital inverter which reduces energy consumption by 73 percent. .

The newly introduced drum washing machine of 2020 from Samsung is very efficient and is built with eco bubble technolgy which allows it to provide cleaning of very dirty garments or clothes without the use of water.  Futhermore, the new Side by Side Refrigetor was built with Spacemax technology which has enabled  Samsung to offer more spacious interior without increasing the external dimentions or compromising energy efficiency.

Also speaking at the event, Mrs. Oluwaremilekun Adesola-Ogunsan, Head, Consumer Electronics, Samsung Nigeria stated that “Samsung understands the economic diffulties currently being experienced in the country and has consistently produced pocket friendly premium consumer products. We are very consistent in our approach as we understand that our customers like the good things of life and we have provided that without compromising our standards”. “So I can say boldy that there is a Samsung for everybody regardless of your income stream” She added.

In 2019, the Samsung consumer range of products received universal praise for its innovative quality and design and numerous pioneering features. This year Samsung has added even more beneficial features which its customers will appreciate in great deal.

 


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CWG Plc Empowers Small Businesses in Nigeria with SME Solution

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Pan-African Information and Communications Technology Company, CWG Plc has said the essence of its Enterprise Resource Planning Solution (SMERP) that runs on the cloud is to empower small and medium enterprises in Nigeria and offer them the required tools to manage their entire business.

Mr. Dolapo Orogbemi, Product Manager for SMERP, who disclosed this recently to the media, noted that with SMEs contributing massively to Nigeria’s economy and creating both direct and indirect jobs, SMERP was designed intentionally to help SMEs thrive.

“Since inception, it has been the number one goal for us here at CWG because we have always identified the potential for SMEs once they are provided with the right support.

Thus, SMERP was designed to make available enabling tools for all SMEs across Africa at a relatively affordable price and to also make their business operations lean where they can save more resources to increase profitability,” he said.

Dolapo explained that in support of SMEs, SMERP has provided an effective ERP tailored to the SME market, providing services such as Inventory Management, E-commerce platform, Accounting, Point of Sale and Customer Relationship Management tool.

He argued that one of the major reasons SMEs don’t survive beyond the early stage of their business is due to inadequate funding to scale the business and this has become a default gap in the SME sector.

But with the CWG’s SMERP solution, SMEs can take proper records of their day-to-day business transactions to present to financial institutions as proof of profitability and project business growth for them.

According to him, SMERP’s competitive edge is based on value to the SMEs where they can have access to a complete ERP solution at an affordable price, stressing that the solution enables each SME with special requirements to execute their business needs.

For more information on SMERP kindly visit www.smerp.ng to start a 14-days free trial.


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