AIT Alumna Stars in Sri Lanka’s First Satellite Launch

Ms. Dulani Chamika Withanage, an alumna of the Mechatronics program at the Asian Institute of Technology (AIT), is a key person associated with the development of Sri Lanka’s first satellite known as Raavana 1. Weighing 1.1 kilograms, the cube-sized satellite was launched into space from the mid-Atlantic space station in Virginia on 18 April 2019

Ms. Dulani Chamika paid tribute to both AIT and her faculty advisor Prof. Manukid Parnichkun. “AIT is my second home,” says Dulani, “and it is there that I grew up as an independent person,” she adds. She credits AIT for laying the foundations for her research, particularly through the time she spent working in the Mechatronics laboratory after completing her studies

“It was a student project, and I became associated with the project during my further studies at the Kyushu Institute of Technology,” says Dulani. She joined the BIRDS-3 project, which seeks to take the first step toward creating a home-grown space program by designing, building, testing, launching, and operating the first satellites for participating nations. Led by Japan’s Kyushu Institute of Technology, it involves students from Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Nepal, and Japan.