On March 23, 2016, the Filipino built Diwata-1 was launched into space. The launch took place from the United States. A few days later, the micro-satellite it was received by the International Space Station. In April 2016, the satellite was deployed into space. The Philippines entered the space race.

International Space Station launches Diwata-1 (cc: NASA).

Photo: Diwata-1 was deployed by the International Space Station (Creative Commons: NASA).

Diwata Origins

Diwata-1 is the first micro-satellite built and designed by the Philippines. The purpose of the satellite was to develop the country’s remote sensing capabilities. Remote sensing is the use of satellites or aircraft to obtain images of the earth’s surface.

The Philippines is found in an area that is exposed to many natural hazards. This includes volcanic, earthquake, landslide, and typhoon activity. These hazards occur regularly every year resulting in the loss of life and property damage.

Remote sensing is a proven method of monitoring, evaluating, and predicting these types of dangers.

Japan has a program to launch many micro-satellites into space. Universities in Japan have partnered with many Asian countries to develop them. The Philippines joined the partnership to develop two satellites.

Diwata is a Filipino word for a type of fairy.

Built by Students

The development team was made up of two researchers from DOST (Department of Science and Technology) and seven students from the University of the Philippines. This team was guided by experts from two Japanese universities.

The Diwata-1 was designed to have a high precision telescope to evaluate damage from natural disasters. It also has a multi-spectral imager to detect changes in the ocean and natural vegetation. The last device included was a wide field camera to study weather patterns.

The Future

The Diwata-1 was a first step toward the creation of a Philippine Space Agency. It is hoped that this would lead to the development of new industries in aerospace and electronics.

Vocabulary Building

The following is a recommended list of words and their definitions for students.

earthquake: the sudden and violent shaking of the ground caused by movements in the earth’s crust.

landslide: an event where a large mass of earth or rock rapidly moves down a mountain or cliff.

natural hazards: physical phenomena caused by geological events (earthquake, landslide, tsunami, or volcanic eruption) or atmospheric events (drought, flood, hurricane, tornado, wildfire).

remote sensing: the use of satellites or aircraft to obtain information or images of the earth.

typhoon: a large tropical storm in the western Pacific Ocean. Known as hurricanes when they occur in the Atlantic Ocean.

Improving Your Reading and Thinking Skills

Think for a few moments. Try to recall the major ideas in this article. Try to answer the following questions to improve your reading comprehension.

• Which country developed and built the satellite?

• How will the satellite be used?

• What is remote sensing?



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7 comments on "Diwata: Philippines Enters Space Race"

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Ronand Abella


Webster Gabiana

Natutunan ko na lahat

Webster Gabiana

On march 23, 2016, the Filipino scarred to see the race in the space.In the diwata Philippines they lunge into space.A diwata is a star

Ronand Abella

And mga pilipino ay nag hihirap na dahil ka mga ganitong pangyayari at hangang ngayon ay meron prin ito.Kaya ano man ang atingkawin aydapat tayo mag tulungangan. at hindi tayu mag away sanabga bagay na indi importante sa ating kalikasan bara masaya ang ating pilipinas.

Ronand Abella

Diwata is the first was lunch in united states on march 13,2016.Diwata is a Filipino word meaning ”fairy”.The Philippines build the Diwata to predict what will happen to their country.They do this because their place is exposed to many natural hazards.Like Volcanic activity, earthquake, landslide, and even typhoon.

Webster Gabiana

natutunan ko na sa marso 23 2016 pillipins lahi ang space lahi

Webster Gabiana

I learned that on march 23 2016 pilipins race the space race.
I learned that japanis joined the pillipins in the space race.
Now i learned every thing.