The Rocky Mountain Chapter of the National Defense Industrial Association (NDIA) worked with four schools and more than 200 students to launch micro experiments to the edge of space. This is part of the Rocky Mountain Chapter’s effort to encourage kids to learn more about Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) in schools. We worked with the Edge of Space Sciences Inc. to launch these micro experiments known as “EggSats” to an altitude of approximately 97,000 feet using a small weather balloon. An EggSat is an experiment that fits inside of an Easter egg. These “EggSats” are flown to the edge of space by weather balloons and then returned to the student.
NDIA funded and helped lead planning efforts with school science teachers and STEM coordinators. We also provided payload integration and launch/recovery. Once the NDIA staff recovered the experiments, the team returned them to the schools for analysis. Students in third through eighth-grade classes and STEM Clubs took part in the program from four schools (Monroe Elementary, Mountainside Elementary, Trailblazer Elementary, and Texas Middle School (Texarkana, TX).
The kids were very excited about the Edge of Space experiments. This experience has been a strong STEM motivator in the classroom and it has opened the eyes of some students into the excitement and wonder of science.
The pictures are of students from Trailblazer Elementary School with their EggSats, and a picture of some of the payloads with actual flight data from the launch on Oct 13th. Overall, this was a big success for our NDIA Rocky Mountain Chapter, our Workforce Development Committee, and our junior scientists.