If you’d like the chance to win funding for your own public engagement work, apply for the next I’m a Scientist, Get me out of here: imascientist.org.uk/scientist-apply
Since winning the I’m a Scientist competition I did a lot of research into space balloons and how to launch them. I came across European Astrotech who deliver high altitude balloon programs for schools, and they were excited to get involved in a joint project. With added financial support from the LUVMI rover team we were able to work with a local school in Milton Keynes to deliver a couple of space themed sessions cumulating in a launch of a space balloon.
After bad weather hampered the first launch I spent a morning with year 5 looking at the scale of the Universe and wrapping our heads around just how far apart everything is. Once the weather cleared up we rescheduled the launch and an expert from European Astrotech delivered a talk to year 5 & 6 students on how science in space has affected our everyday lives. Then, we all launched our own science project into the edge of space with our space balloon.
Included on the balloon were two drawings from the winners of a space design competition. As the Astrotech team chased the balloon the students could track its progress along with the chase car. High definition videos from the launch have now been recovered and shared for everyone to enjoy the launch all over again.
— Hannah Sargeant (@Hannah_Sargey) May 22, 2018
I’ve always had a passion for outreach but the I’m a Scientist experience inspired me to challenge myself and try to organise something involving various experts to provide the most exciting experience for the students. I’m looking forward to working on future space balloon projects and collaborating with more experts to give further students a passion for space science and technology.