Rocket Science

17th April 2016

Rocket Seed Science: Watch this Space!


As you may be aware, our first British steps as part of the European Space Agency (ESA) took place late in 2015 with our very own astronaut Tim Peake launching from Baikonur Cosmodrome on the Soyuz TMA-19M and docking at the International Space Station. During his time in space Major Peake will spend around 6 months completing various experiments and maintenance roles. Prior to his launch on the 2nd September 2015, ESA astronaut Andreas Mogesnsen launched on Soyuz 44s carrying with him 2kg of rocket (Eruca sativa) seeds. Major Peake has taken charge of the seeds during his time on board the ISS and following approximately 6 months in microgravity, the seeds have now been returned to Earth.


Over the Easter break, seeds were distributed to schools around the country that had been successfully selected to take part in an investigation to study the effect of microgravity on seed development and plant growth. I am happy to announce that Richard Coates Middle School have been selected as one of the schools to take part in this exciting project! A selection of pupils will have the opportunity to participate in this exciting investigation, including everything from planting out, to watering, checking germination and tracking growth progress. All of the data collected will be fed back to a central location where scientists will analyse and use the data to support future space exploration.


This is a unique and exciting prospect for our pupils and provides a valuable opportunity for a wide range of children to contribute to a truly international effort on scientific exploration and enquiry. We will be posting more information on our website, including pictures and progress updates. Watch this “space”!


Rocket Science

More information can be found below.