Final preparations are underway for a group of students at West Lakes Academy who plan to launch a recording device into space. The nine sixth form students are taking part in a challenge set by React Engineering.
The project called Elevated Horizons will see three teams of students from West Lakes Academy, Cockermouth School and UTC work with professionals from React Engineering to send their devices into the atmosphere. The task will see the students design, build and launch a device capable of reaching the highest altitude and recording compelling footage of the curvature of the earth, images of the atmosphere and the blackness of space.
Their equipment will be attached to a giant helium balloon and for their mission to be successful, the students must manage to record 360-degree video footage of the balloon ascending into the blackness of space and descending. As well as this, the team must record information such as temperature, air pressure and radiation levels.
Year 12 student Logan Adshead said, “We’ve been working on this project since December and we’re all really excited about launch day. Each member of the team has had their own role within the project and we have worked together to design and create the balloon payload which will hopefully capture some amazing 360-degree footage. We’ve also had weekly meetings with React Engineering who have supported us throughout the project and supplied essential equipment needed for the task.”
Year 12 student Curtis Hailes added, “We aim to launch the balloon next week. We have had to take weather conditions into consideration and ask the Civil Aviation Authority for permission. I’ve really enjoyed taking part in the project and I hope it helps to inspire the younger students and engage them in STEM subjects.”