Two University of the Philippines students have been selected by Japan for space technology recipients of its scholarship program. The two Filipino students are the first to achieve the feat.
UP students John Paul Almonte and Charleston Dale Ambali received scholarships from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) – Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) Network for Utilization of Space Technology (JJ-NeST). The two were recently invited to JAXA to present their current research works.
Almonte’s research concentrates on developing a tracking system for ground sensor terminals used in satellite store-and-forward networks for remote data collection. These networks are utilized in various industries such as environmental monitoring, emergency communications, and telemedicine.
Ambatali, on the other hand is working on a space-based solar power station that collects energy from the sun and sends it back to earth as a stable source of renewable energy.
In a statement, Charleston Dale Ambali said “My knowledge of space technology development broadened in three aspects: the ground operations, development of space systems, and the policy that sustains them“.
“Once I finish the program and return, I aim to spearhead projects that will promote a better quality of life for the Filipino.” he added
For John Paul Almonte’s part, he said that the JICA scholarship provided him “with the opportunity to work on multiple satellite projects that deepened by knowledge of the entire satellite development process, from mission definition to launch and operations.”
The program is part of JICA’s plans to develop space technology in the Philippines as it is a “relatively new area” that has been showing “plenty of promise,” the agency said.
Meanwhile, JICA Philippines chief representative Sakamoto Takema said that Its human resource development program in the Philippines is designed “to address long-term sustainability and impact,” especially in space technology.
“Hopefully, more young Filipinos will be encouraged to study space technology, and work with Japan,” Sakamoto added.