Coláiste An Phiarsaigh, Glanmire win national Can Sat competition
Coláiste an Phiarsaigh, Glanmire, was announced as the winning team at the final of the National CanSat competition at the Lifetime Science Lab in Cork on the 16th March. The students took on the challenge to create a CanSat – a simulation of a real satellite which fits into the volume of a soft drinks can. The CanSat includes all the major elements found in a satellite, such as power, sensors and a communication system. Students from seven schools have worked for a number of months designing, building and testing their CanSats in the lead up to the final at the Lifetime Lab in Cork.
The winning team CaPSat made up of nine students from Coláiste an Phiarsaigh, will now go onto compete at the European CanSat final in The Netherlands in April, where their CanSat will be launched to an altitude of approximately 1km by a rocket. The travelling team will be sponsored on their journey by Cork Electronics Industry Association (CEIA), ESERO Ireland (European Space Education Resource Office), co-funded by the European Space Agency and Discover Science & Engineering, Science Foundation Ireland’s (SFI) education and outreach programme.
Once the CanSat’s are launched, the teams carry out tests as it is descending back to the ground. The primary mission of the CanSat is to measure air temperature and atmospheric pressure – which is also used to estimate altitude – and transmit the data to the ground station (laptop). As well as the primary mission, the CapSat team integrated a GPS sensor to the CanSat for their secondary mission. After collecting the data the CanSat teams each make a presentation interpreting the data from their CanSats missions.
Sean Gayer Chairperson of CEIA said: “The CanSat final is the culmination of months of hard work and dedication shown by all entrants of the competition. It is clear that all of the students have fully embraced the CanSat competition and you only have to look at the standard of the projects on display in the Lifetime Lab to acknowledge this. It is credit to their teachers also who have provided the guidance and advice required in assisting the teams to reach this point . I congratulate all seven teams in taking part and I wish the team from Colaiste an Phiarsaigh the best of luck as they represent Ireland in the European competition in Holland next month”.
Ann Fitzpatrick, ESERO Ireland Manager, said “The purpose of the CanSat competition is to open up the possibilities of space and exploration to secondary school students. In December 2012 we saw Enbio sign a €500,000 contract with the European Space Agency to better protect satellites in space. This is just one example of an Irish company that is thriving in the space sector, and it highlights the space related opportunities that are available for students and graduates. ESERO Ireland’s ambition, with the assistance of the European Space Agency, is to foster the skills that are required for this industry at an early age and the CanSat competition provides a practical experience of a real space project for second level students. Working in partnership with CEIA we plan to expand the National CanSat competitions across Ireland with support from industry and third level institutions the final in Cork is a great step towards realising this goal.”
ESA Robotic Competition for schools
Registration is now open for ESA’s first robotic competition on a mock-up of the International Space Station. The competition combines do-it-yourself and gaming skills in a robotic race to unload, carry and store cargo.
Youngsters from ESA Member States, competing in three age groups between 11 and 19 years old, have a wide degree of freedom when making their robots. There are no restrictions and no recommendations – teams can build them from kits available in shops or recycle old parts to make better models, as long as they adhere to safety requirements.
Robots will receive their instructions wirelessly. To make the competition more challenging, the robot operators will not have a direct view of the playing field but have to rely on video from four cameras in the playing area and from sensors on their robot, if they choose to equip their robots with them.
The playground is a scaled-down model of the International Space Station, starting at ESA’s Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV) and finishing at the European laboratory, Columbus.
In under five minutes, the robots must unload cargo of different sizes from ATV, carry it to Columbus and stow it safely. Like in any game, there will be bonus points and penalties.
The route to Columbus includes scaling a ramp and all robots must end the game in one piece to qualify. ‘Astronauts’ floating around the game area must be avoided and teams must cope with losing video signal for up to 15 seconds.
Application deadline: 15 March 2013
Development phase: 4–12 April 2013
Finalist down-selection phase: Beginning May 2013
Competition event: Mid-October 2013 Find out more
ESAKids Name our Mascot Competition
ESA Education invite children aged between 4 and 12 years old to Name our Mascot competition.
The competition will accept entries until 18:00 CET (17:00 GMT) on 29 March 2013. Entries must be submitted via the online form .
Names submitted will be evaluated by a panel of judges composed of ESA Communication and Education officers. Names will be judged by a) how ‘catchy’ the name is, and b) how easy it is to pronounce and remember in various languages. Should a winning name be submitted by different people, judges will first choose based on the reasons behind the name, and if this still leaves more than one participant for a name, by drawing a participant’s name from a hat. The decisions of the judges are final.
Ten finalists will be selected, from which a grand winner will be selected. ESA will ask for parents’ permission to include a picture of the child in an article announcing the winners. Prizes will be awarded to all ten finalists.
Name our Mascot competition
Rules and Regulations.
For further information
I’m a Scientist, Get me out of here! Space Zone
I’m a Scientist, Get me out of here! comes to Ireland
Free science engagement event! I’m a Scientist, Get me out of here!
This a free online event where school students get to meet and interact with scientists, and it’s coming to Ireland. It’s a bit like X Factor, where the scientists are voted off by the students, based on how well they answer their questions.
What is it?
The event is split into ‘zones’ – groups of 5 scientists and students. There’ll be Space and Health themed zones, which scientists researching the themes and a broad range of scientists in the general Hydrogen Zone.
The scientists in each zone are pitted against students over 2 weeks. They have intense quick-fire live chats, students ask the scientists anything they want and then vote for their favourite scientist to win the grand prize of €500 to spend on communicating their work.
“I kept finding that I’d ask a question, and they’d give me an answer, and then I’d have loads more questions, and then more, and then more!” – Student
It’s taking place online from 12th – 23rd November as part of Science Week Ireland and Dublin City of Science 2012. For more info
Register ASAP by Monday 1st October
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more info, or give her a ring on +44 1225 326892