Another series of in-depth lectures, interactive workshops and new experiences for the participants of this year’s Southern Hemisphere Space Studies Program (SH-SSP18).
Participants spent Saturday morning executing a successful Rube Goldberg machine, moderated by Korean astronaut Dr Soyeon Yi as a team building exercise. That evening, the public event concerning Astronaut and Human Spaceflight was held in Adelaide city. Dr Yi joined the panel with the International Space University’s president Professor Walter Peeters and with Dr Omar Hatamleh, the director of SH-SSP18.
Sunday’s rest day gave the participants an optional visit to Cleland Wildlife Park followed in the evening by a group debate concerning whether or not there is intelligent life beyond humans in outer space.
A further two public events this week were held at the University of South Australia’s Mawson Lakes campus; Dr Jacques Arnould of the French Institute of Space Studies (CNES) spoke of the Role of Ethics in Space, providing an introduction to the new responsibilities space exploration presents. Then came the Government, Industry and Universities Space Economy Development Panel moderated by Space Industry Association of Australia chair Mr Michael Davis. *
The first of two assessed quizzes was undertaken by participants this week, and if this doesn't seem like enough to keep participants occupied, on Tuesday the Amateur Radio Experimenters Group (AREG) briefed them in preparation a stratospheric balloon launch.
The launch, sponsored by Serafino Wines, is scheduled for Sunday 28 January 2018 though remains subject to wind predictions and fire restrictions. In the event the launch is postponed, the original launch day will still be one to remember, with participants presenting to invited guests on the planning and execution of what is required in the pre and post-launch phases. Both participants and guests are also able to enjoy a wine tasting and gourmet lunch generously provided by Serafino Wines.
In such projects, SH-SSP18 participants are encouraged to try their hand in new disciplines. Chinese participant Meng Xu nominated to play a part in image processing within the balloon launch project, a role outside of his professional expertise.
“I didn’t have any technical background,” he explains, as a space administration project manager, “with the balloon I want to take opportunities to understand downstream control activities.”
With students using such team exercises to move beyond their traditional skill sets, the true interdisciplinary nature of ISU is ever present.
* All three of the above public events were livestreamed and are now available at www.youtube.com/spaceuniversity
Scott Schneider, currently teaching assistant with SH-SSP18 and a graduate of SH-SSP17.