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Successful Deployment of the First Philippine University-Built Satellites “Maya-3” and “Maya-4”

(L-R) JAXA Vice President TERADA Koji, Minister and Consul Leah Victoria C. Rodriguez, Minister Evangeline T. Ong Jimenez-Ducrocq, Ambassador Jose C. Laurel V, JAXA Astronaut KANAI Norishige, and JAXA Vice President SASAKI Hiroshi

The Philippines’ first university-built satellites “Maya-3” and “Maya-4” was successfully released into orbit from the International Space Station on 06 October 2021 at 6:15 pm (Japan Time). Prior to the deployment, both CubeSats were launched to the International Space Station on 29 August 2021 aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket’s Dragon 208.

Witnessing the event at JAXA Tsukuba Space Center, Ambassador Jose C. Laurel V remarked that “We have long recognized the different applications of space technologies in contributing towards the nation’s sustainable development, such as providing access to telecommunications and to vital data for food security, health improvements, disaster risk reduction, prevention of humanitarian crises, poverty reduction, and monitoring natural resources.”

“I congratulate the Department of Science and Technology, University of the Philippines, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and Kyushu Institute of Technology for this milestone event”, Ambassador Laurel further stated.

Top (L-R): Renzo Wee, Christy Raterta, Lorilyn Daquioag, Derick Canceran
Bottom (L-R): Judiel Reyes, Gladys Bajaro, Marielle Magbanua-Gregorio, Bryan Custodio
Photo by: Stamina4Space

The CubeSats Maya-3 and Maya-4 are designed and developed by the first batch of scholars supported by the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) with scholarship grants from its Science Education Institute (SEI). They trained under the Space Technology and Applications Mastery, Innovation, and Advancement (STAMINA4Space) Program: Project 3 – Space Science and Technology Proliferation through University Partnerships (STeP-UP).

Maya-3 and Maya-4 CubeSats are 1.1-kilogram microsatellites that feature two (2) 5MP visual cameras to capture images of the Philippines and for general visual assessment of landmass and bodies of water.

Secretary of Science and Technology Fortunato T. de la Peña provided the Go/No Go Call via Zoom at the deployment event.

The bilateral space cooperation program of the Philippines and Japan aims to cultivate STEM talent, advance technology cooperation, expand data applications, deepen space policy dialogues, and nurture the growth of the space industry in the Philippines.

The deployment event may be accessed at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gDnhIniV1FU.