Proc_3SSEA_246-250.pdf (350.83 kB)

Spicing up your space education with CanSats rockets and hackathons... - the Space Universities Network Recipe Book

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conference contribution
posted on 14.07.2020, 13:24 by Lucy Berthoud, Andrew Glester, Sufyaan Akram, Osian Rees, Iuliu-Cezar Ardelean, Katharine Smith, Nigel Bannister, Viktor Fedun, Gary Verth, Mark Jones, Jennifer Kingston, Sarah Matthews, Alexandra Young, Diana Mastracci
The UK-based “Space Universities Network” (SUN)was formed in 2016 with the aim of enhancing the quality of learning and teaching by providing support and resources to the space science and engineering higher education community. It now has 60 members from 30 different Universities around the UK. SUN’s objectives are to facilitate the creation of a skilled workforce of graduates who can meet the challenges of future scientific and commercial exploitation of space. The network addresses this need by helping to inspire students to join the space sector and ensuring they are well equipped at University to contribute. SUN enables the developing, sharing and promotion of effective practice and innovation in thedelivery of university-level space scienceand engineering curricula.One of the ways that effective practice and innovation is disseminated is by the collection of case studies. In this paper, a collection ofcase studies from different members of thenetwork is described. The case studies covera wide variety of student activities run by staff and/or students includingSatellite in a SodaCan (CanSat) competitions, water rocket and rocket building, Earth observation data hackathons, astrodynamics workshops using GMAT software, Lunar rover model building, cubesat projects, remote microscope investigation of samples, satellite applications data workshops and ESA‘drop your thesis’ projects. For each case study, those running the activity completed a standard format template of 1-3 pages which describes: What was the purpose? How was it integrated into the curriculum (if at all)? How did it work? What materials doyou need and how much did it cost in time and money? What problems were encountered? What feedback did you have? The paper describes each case study briefly. These are now publicly available on the SUN website ( and are accessible to all. More cases studies are welcome and are being submitted. It is hoped that these will inspire other Universities who wish to spice up their space courses with some interesting recipes!



Proceedings of the 3rd Symposium on Space Educational Activities, 2019, pp. 246-250


3rd Symposium on Space Educational Activities, September 16-18, 2019, Leicester, United Kingdom


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Proceedings of the 3rd Symposium on Space Educational Activities




University of Leicester



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Symposium organised by: University of Leicester, UK Students for the Exploration & Development of Space, National Space Academy, ESA Education Office


Nigel Bannister, Áine O’Brien, Alexander Kinnaird

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University of Leicester, UK

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