Space Lab.

Assoc. Prof. Rasha Mohamed Fathy Ghoneim
Head of Space Research Laboratory

Space Research Laboratory

The Space Research Laboratory: studies the satellite movement and the natural forces acting on them which cause perturbations in their orbits. The studies related to the satellite tracking with lasers and their applications in the fields of astronomy and geophysics. As well as studies related to the space environment (including space plasma via the plasma unit at the lab) and their impact on the satellite. One from the recent studies in the laboratory is the generation and studies of the properties of the nanomaterials at the nanotechnology unit. 



Nowadays, a space environment is a branch of astronautics, aerospace, engineering, and space physics that seeks to understand and address conditions existing in space that affect the operation of spacecraft. Problems for spacecraft can arise from radiation, space debris, upper atmospheric drag, and spacecraft electrostatic charging. The types of space environment effects depend on the altitude and inclination of spacecraft orbit and their interactions with spacecraft vary with local time, season, geomagnetic and solar activity with the magnitude varying from negligible to mission threatening. Studies of the space environment and its effects on surfaces and on equipment of the satellites are also one of the interests of the space science laboratory. The Space Plasma Unit is build to generate plasma with specific properties in a high vacuum plasma chamber. The experimental and simulated tests of this system show the plasma effects on different components of spacecraft s’ surface. This mechanism studies the charging process, which leads the different surface potentials. Moreover, the arcing phenomena will be studied in detail in terms of arcing current, voltage, and temporal evolution of discharge spots. The newest unit at the space research laboratory is the Nanotechnology Unit.  The Unit is used for the generations of the nanoparticles and studies of their properties. It is used for the preparation of some samples of Cadmium cyanide, Gold, and Silver of nano-materials.

Members of Space Research Laboratory

NameTitleInternal PhoneCell PhoneE-Mail
Makram Ibrahim Khalil
My Home Page
Satellite Laser Ranging
Prof. Dr.
Head of Solar and Space Research Department
Rasha Mohamed fathy Ghoneem
Assoc. Prof.
Head of Space Research Laboratory
Yehia Ahmed Abdel-aziz Prof. Dr.
Joseph Sidky MikhaiProf.
Magdy Ibrahim El-SaftawyProf.
Yousry Shafik HannaProf.
Gamal Fahim AttiaProf.
Afaf Mostafa Abd ElhameedProf.
Susan Wassem Samwel
Maroof Abd Elmawla Hegazy MarawanAssoc.
Nabawia Shaban KhalefaAssoc.
Adel Tawfik
Salwa Mahmoud WazeeryDr.outside
Halla Shawki Abd El gawadDr.outside
Atta Allah El Azab Eltaher
Tarek Salem
Ahmed Magdy Abd
Hani Mahmoud
Mohamed Yehia
Shafik Kaheel TealabPh.D.Student13940114 520
Mahmoud Mustafa Mohamed
Mohamed Ali
Shereef Ahmed
Mustafa Abdelmajied
Hend Ahmed Mohamed
Esraa Abd ElAziz MohamedMSc.
Meirna Gamal El-Din HalawaMSc.
Islam Mustafa HawashMSc.

The Research Trends in the Space Research Laboratory:-

  • Satellites Dynamics.

             – Satellite motion: orbit determination and perturbing forces.

             – Computation of related phenomena (e.g. rise, set, and ground trace) of artificial earth

             satellite motion.

            – Spacecraft stability and attitude control.

            –  Design of artificial satellites for special missions as frozen orbits.

  • Satellite Laser Ranging and Applications.

             – Satellite tracking from Helwan SLR-Station.

             – Data Fitting using high accuracy methods such as Spline and overlap techniques.

            –  Distance determination on Earth’s surface.

  • Space Geodesy from SLR data

         – Determinations of station positions and velocities.

         – Studies of the crustal deformations.

         – Studies of the tectonic motion.

  • Spacecraft- Environment interactions

          –  Space environment: physical properties, mechanisms, and effects.

          –  Space plasma: properties and effects; theoretical and experimental studies.

  • Nanotechnology: Nano-material generation and applications

           –   Nanoparticle properties: optical and electrical characteristics;

               theoretical and experimental studies.

          –   Nano-thin film production for photovoltaic cells used in space applications

  • Meteoroids and Space Debris:

          –  Optical and photometric studies

          –  Analytical studies

          –   Observations and prediction (installation in progress).

Satellite Laser Ranging Station (SLR)

The satellite Laser Ranging (SLR) is one of the most accurate techniques available for tracking artificial satellites. It measures the time intervals required for pulses emitted by a laser transmitter to travel to a satellite and to return back to the transmitting site. The range or distance between the satellite and the tracking station is approximately equal to half of the two – ways travel time multiplied by the speed of light.

      Although this technique is used only for satellites carrying retro-reflectors, these devices are long lasting, light and small. Thus, they are relatively easy to fit to satellites, whose precise positions need to be known.

Space Plasma Unit  

An integrated system for simulating space plasma, its applications, and its effect on the various spacecraft systems, Experimental studies to simulate space plasma, its properties and its effect on the surfaces of spacecraft and solar cells of satellites and the rest of the space devices and systems.

Alloy Casting Unit

An integrated system for melting and casting alloys using the electromagnetic method, due to components of different materials, alloys, and metals.
Melting and casting operations of metals and alloys, especially those used in the manufacture of control systems for spacecraft and satellites.

Optical Satellite Tracking Station (OSTS)

In March 2019 the first dedicated of optical observation of space debris and artificial satellites (Optical Satellites Tracking Station (OSTS)) in Egypt has been performed by the National Research Institute of Astronomy and Geophysics (NRIAG) at Kottamia Observatory. The 0.28 m Telescope is used for tracking and surveying debris and operational satellites at Low Earth Orbit (LEO), High ellipse orbit (HEO) and the Geosynchronous Earth Orbit (GEO). OSTS has also collaborated with International Scientific Optical Network (ISON) for optical observation.

Our optical system consists of an optical telescope attached with a highly sensitive camera with a field of view in the range of (3.4˚ x 2.3˚).

The goal of this project is to give scientific community imagination about the status of space debris researches and to provide the most recent data for each newly discovered object including orbital parameters, estimated standard magnitude, and estimated area-to-mass ratio value. Those data can be included in existed space debris models as well as can be used for the study of long-term orbital evolution and possible origin of the objects. The project will also serve as some reference document for scientists and amateurs involved in those objects’ observation and data analysis. Operators of satellites on high geocentric orbits (mainly in GEO) can use this data in order to obtain a more realistic description of the situation around their orbital assets.

Nano-Technology Unit

Nanotechnology is one of the modern sciences and its applications include all disciplines, which means the behavior of matter in nanoscale sizes and for the importance of nanotechnology, the goal of the unit was the ability to produce materials in nanoscale sizes and then study the properties of these materials and at the conclusion of the unit’s objectives is to direct nanomaterials to applications that are primarily a laboratory Space and its applications in sensors and solar cells.
This unit does the following:
1- Preparation of nanomaterials for space applications.
2- Preparation of nanometric materials using different methods, including: mechanical methods, chemical deposition methods, chemical sol gel techniques and thermal methods.


Devices owned by Space Laboratory

Satellite Laser Ranging Station (SLR)

Laser Generator for SLR

Space Plasma Unit

Alloy Casting Unit

Alloy casting Oven

Optical Satellite Tracking Station (OSTS)

Celestron 11'' Schmidt Astrograph with CGE Pro Mount

Nano-Technology Unit 

UV-Vis spectroscopy
Sensitive balance scale
PH meter
Optical microscope
Magnetic stirrer
Hydraulic press machine

Projects funded by Academy of scientific Research & Technology in Egypt




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