300 students from three schools in Kerry, Limerick, and Galway conducted a total of 60 scientific experiments. They have reached the edge of space to understand their response to upper atmospheric conditions. Experiment
was carried out by five helium balloons launched from Met Eireann’s Valentia weather station in Cahersiveen, County Kerry. The
balloon sent the experiment 30 kilometers or 100,000 feet into space before it exploded, allowing the experiment to gently return to Earth using a parachute.
experiments were collected using GPS tracker. The analysis results will be notified to students when they return to school in September.
Katie Dwyer, Alison O’Keeffe, and Lara Sanz Murphy, age eight, are students who set up the experiment. All three are students from Scoil Mhuire, Oranmore, County Galway. They have been experimenting for several months and are awaiting the arrival of today.
started an experiment today to understand how they react to conditions at the edge of space.
In their experiment, they are measuring the reaction of sunflower seeds when planted behind the edge of space and how the flexibility of Blu Tack is affected by space.
“We are doing a project with STEMM. STEMM stands for science, technology, engineering, math and medicine,” explained Katie Dwyer.
“We will mount a big helium balloon and a payload on the bottom, and then we will send it to the stratosphere. We do this so that people can learn more about science, technology and engineering.”
Lara Sanz Murphy told The Earth spacecraft The project is a great learning experience: “I learned that the stratosphere is 40 kilometers away and that space is very cold.”
Alison O`Keeffe agreed: “It’s a lot of fun. I really like it. It learns about space. Very interesting.” The
Spaceship Earth project is led by researchers from NUI Galway and involves Met Eireann, the University of Limerick and the Lero Software Research Center of the Irish Science Foundation. Project
Leader Professor Derek O`Keeffe, Project
Leader Professor Derek O`Keeffe said the project aims to stimulate and improve elementary students’ thinking about STEMM.
“The real motivation here is to let kids know that if they think big, great things will happen,” he said.
“First, we want them to consider science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and medicine. If we have children who are passionate and interested in these subjects, they will continue to be scientists.”
Today these experiments are from County Kerry Launched by Met Eireann’s Valentia Weather Station in Cahersiveen.
After the balloon exploded, the experiment was resumed and the parachute slid to the ground. The results of experiment
will be analyzed in the summer and students will be informed when they return to school in September.