SGAC Pakistan

National Points of Contact
Waqas Qazi
Waqas Qazi
Oct 2013-Oct 2017
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Welcome to the national page of SGAC Pakistan. This page contains details about space-related activities in Pakistan, and also contains links to national organizations and volunteer groups that are engaged in such activities. SGAC Pakistan intends to invoke the interest of the general public towards space and space applications by forming connections with national societies and community-wide efforts that are popularizing and appraising people about space and its applications for human development.

The national space agency, Pakistan Space & Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (SUPARCO), has the mandate to conduct research & development activities in space science/technology and related fields in the country. Of the many programs currently going on at SUPARCO, one of the recent achievements is the geostationary satellite Paksat-1R which was launched in 2011, located at geostationary orbit slot 38° E. Paksat-1R is a communications satellite, operated, managed, and controlled by Pakistan. PAKSAT-1R is serving TV broadcasters, cellular operators, internet & data service providers and government organizations across South Asia, Middle East, Africa and Europe. The next major project, that of a high-resolution remote sensing satellite, is currently under development, and is planned to be launched by 2016. SUPARCO has also recently established the Space Application Center for Response in Emergency & Disasters (SACRED) for disaster management and mitigation using space technologies. The SACRED center is the Regional Support Office (RSO) of United Nations Platform for Space Based Information for Disaster Management and Emergency Response (UN-SPIDER) in Pakistan. The first university cubesat from Pakistan, “iCUBE-1” has been developed and launched in Nov., 2013 by the Institute of Space Technology, Islamabad.


Young Space Activities Overview

A Participant developing a small robot at the  International Space Apps Challenge Islamabd Event, 2014

A Participant developing a small robot at the international Space Apps Challenge Islamabd Event, 2014

App Development at the International Space Apps Challenge  Islamabad Event 2015

App Development at the International Space Apps Challenge  Islamabad Event 2015

Eath and Mars comparison model made by high school students for World Space Week, 2013

 Eath and Mars comparison model
made by high school students for
World Space Week, 2013

Participants having a Discussion with a Mentor from  Industry at the International Space Apps Challenge Islamabad Event  2015

Participants having a Discussion with a Mentor from  Industry at the International Space Apps Challenge Islamabad Event  2015

In Pakistan, in addition to the opportunities provided by SGAC, many space-related activities are organized by various organizations and institutions. These include government organizations like SUPARCO, academic institutes like IST, and volunteer organizations such as the Khwarizmi Science Society, Karachi Astronomers Society, and Lahore Astronomy Society. Many of these organizations focus their activities at the national level during the World Space Week (WSW). This year again, the WSW was celebrated actively with the theme of “Discover”, and many space-awareness activities were held for participating young people. Many young students, up to high school level, participated in these activities organized by different organizations. The WSW event at IST was directly linked with SGAC, as the NPoC Dr. Waqas Qazi provided input regarding the events and also assisted in defining the overall vision and conduct of the event.The details of some WSW activities organized by IST in 2015 can be seen here, and information about WSW activities organized by SUPARCO can be seen here. As part of the WSW activities, NPoC Dr. Waqas A. Qazi appeared on a popular FM radio channel to talk about space and its applications in human life during a 2-hour morning show.

The NASA International Space Apps Challenge event has been held in Islamabad, Pakistan now for the second consecutive year. The International Space Apps Challenge is a weekend-hackhaton that is run on the same dates at different locations in the world, where people “across the globe collaborate and engage with publicly available data to design innovative solutions for global challenges.” This year, 133 cities around the globe participated in the event. In 2014, the first-time Islamabad event was held at FAST National University, Islamabad, in which the SGAC NPoC for Pakistan, Dr. Waqas A. Qazi, delivered a guest lecture at the opening ceremony, and also served as a judge for the event. In 2015, this event has been held at the Institute of Space Technology, Islamabad and was sponsored by the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD). One of the marked features of this event was the volunteering by mentors from academia and industry related to space technologies and space applications, which was well appreciated by the participating teams. SGAC NPoC for Pakistan, Dr. Waqas A. Qazi, represented SGAC and took part in the event as a mentor. IST is committed to hosting this event regularly in the future on a bigger scale and SGAC will be partnering in the future with the event through its NPoCs.

GIS (Geographic Information Systems) day was celebrated at various educational and professional organizations on 19th Nov., with organized lectures, talks, and panel discussions.



Country-Specific Space Events in 2016

  • NASA International Space Apps Challenge, Islamabad Event, April, 2016.
  • World Space Week, Oct., 2016.
  • Buraq Space Camp, Dec., 2016.


Interesting Web Links/Resources for the Young Generation in Pakistan

Groups, People, Mailing Lists

Pakistan Amateur Astronomers Society

Khwarizmi Science Society

Karachi Astronomers Society: Mailing List

Lahore Astronomical Society: Mailing List

Pakistan Astronomical Society-Islamabad: Mailing List

Umair Asim’s Observatory


Academic Institutes

Institute of Space Technology (IST), Islamabad

Geospatial Research & Education Lab (GREL), IST, Islamabad

Department of Space Science, University of Punjab, Lahore

Center for Geographic Information System, University of the Punjab, Lahore

Air University, Islamabad

Institute of Space & Planetary Astrophysics, University of Karachi, Karachi

Dept. of Aerospace Engineering, NUST

Institute of Geographical Information Systems (IGIS), NUST, Islamabad



Astronomical Observatory, University of Punjab
KU Observatory, Karachi University
Astronomical Observatory, Institute of Space Technology, Islamabad


Government Agencies

Pakistan Space & Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (SUPARCO)

Global Change Impact Studies Centre (GSISC)



SUPARCO World Space Week 2015 Guidebook

SUPARCO Space Information Booklet 2015

SUPARCO Out of This World 2011

SUPARCO One Small Step – To Guide Children about Space


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