UAE's DEWA-SAT 1 nanosatellite launched

Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) launched the DEWA-SAT 1 nanosatellite in collaboration with NanoAvionics, turning it into the world’s first utility to use nanosatellites to improve the maintenance and planning of electricity and water networks.   

This new achievement underlines DEWA’s leadership in developing and using the latest world-class technologies.  

According to a statement by the government of Dubai, DEWA-SAT 1 was launched on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral Space Launch Complex (SLC-40) in Florida, USA.   

“I extend my thanks and gratitude to His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, for his unlimited support to DEWA and its innovative initiatives and projects including its Space-D program, which His Highness launched in January 2021,” Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, MD & CEO of DEWA, said in a statement. 

He added, “the program supports the National Space Strategy 2030realizeims to realize the UAE’s vision in space sciences, technologies, applications, and services. Today, DEWA, in collaboration with NanoAvionics, has launched the first U3 nanosatellite as part of program-D. A program that aims to improve the operations, maintenance, and planning of its networks with the support of nanosatellite technology, Internet of Things (IoT), and remote sensing technologies.”  

The program also aims to train Emirati professionals to use space technologies to enhance its electricity and water networks and take advantage of Fourth Industrial Revolution technologies such as IoT, Artificial Intelligence (AI), and blockchain to exchange information with the help of satellite communications and earth observation technologies, Al Tayer added. 

Al Tayer highlighted that DEWA-SAT 1 uses LoRa IoT communication technology, a new wireless protocol designed for long-range communications that consume less energy to expand the coverage of the existing terrestrial communication network.  

Some factors, including using satellite communications, the Internet of Things (IoT), and artificial intelligence (AI), will improve the efficiency and effectiveness of DEWA’s operations and support digitizing energy networks, water distribution, and transmission networks. It also enables the integration of IoT data using DEWA’s private cloud.  

The authority also announced its next mission — a U6 nanosatellite to be launched later this year. In contrast, the nanosatellite was designed and developed at DEWA’s R&D Centre in the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park.