No cutting-edge technologies were used and no ground-breaking scientific discoveries were quite yet made.
But an entire generation of future scientists were inspired!
Earth-i was at a recent Principia Schools Conference in Portsmouth, organised by the UK Space Agency (UKSA), which exhibited and celebrated the work done by over a million school students throughout the UK, inspired by British astronaut Tim’s Peake’s mission to the International Space Station. Tim Peake attended the event and students presented their work to him through talks and exhibitions, and also to experts from the UK Space Agency (UKSA), the European Space Agency (ESA), partner organisations and the wider space sector, which included ourselves! All part of the great success UKSA has had in promoting the space industry and the UK’s achievements to the wider population, and to young people in particular.
This was unlike any conference we had been to before but it was definitely a refreshing experience engaging with students, some as young as 7, and getting them interested in and most importantly excited about the space sector (or for that matter, being an astronaut!). Some students even mentioned that they had the opportunity to speak to Tim, not at the conference, but while he was up in the International Space Station (ISS) via their own homemade amateur radios!
For those of us who didn’t have such an opportunity we were still treated to a great talk by Tim where he described his strenuous 10-minute, 5g chest-crushing acceleration from the edge of space into orbit, his moment of tranquillity whilst out spacewalking, and his subsequent violent and fiery return to Earth. For some, it was a once in a lifetime opportunity to hear and speak to a real-life serving astronaut.
What better long-term investment is there in the future of science than investing in the education of young people and nurturing the minds of the future? As Earth-i becomes firmly established as a leader in space-based Earth Observation, inspiring the next generation is inspiring our future employees and customers. Congratulations Tim Peake and the UK Space Agency on another mission completed!