• Sun. Jul 14th, 2024

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Out of this world delivery for schoolchildren

CaptureBudding scientists from Witton Gilbert Primary School are preparing for a delivery that’s out of this world – 100 seeds from space.

The school will be taking part in the Royal Horticultural Society’s (RHS) Rocket Science Experiment.

The national project, which is run in partnership with the UK Space Agency, aims to encourage pupils to think about how plants might grow in space and to help them understand the difficulties of living, growing and eating in space.

In September 2kg of rocket seeds were flown to the International Space Station (ISS) on board the Soyuz 44S.

The seeds will be held in microgravity for six months and British astronaut Tim Peake will be in charge of them during his time on the ISS.

The seeds will come back down to earth in April and Witton Gilbert Primary School will be one of the lucky recipients.

The school will then grow the space seeds alongside some seeds from right here on earth to find out if there have been any differences in growth.

Nobody from the school will know which seeds have been to space and which have stayed here.

Pupils will care for the seedlings, record their growth and observations over seven weeks and enter the information into a database.

Once all the data has been collected the results will be analysed by professional statisticians.

Leading scientists from the RHS and European Space Agency will interpret the results and draw possible conclusions before publishing the finds on the RHS Campaign for School Gardening website.

Paula Nelson, Witton Gilbert Primary School head teacher, said: “We are delighted to be taking part in Rocket Science – it will be an exciting way for our young scientists to contribute to a national experiment and share their learning with the whole school community.

“Hopefully their experience with the project will encourage them to get involved in growing plants and also inspire them to find out more about future careers in STEM subjects including horticulture, plant science and the space industry as a whole.”

For more information about the Rocket Science project visit https://schoolgardening.rhs.org.uk/Competitions/Rocket-Science-Experiment-Overview

The ISS can be tracked at http://spotthestation.nasa.gov/#.VgLAf8tVhBc and watch the launch of the rocket that delivered the seeds to the ISS at www.youtube.com/watch?v=9R7-gWKZZsg

Follow the project at www.twitter.com/rhsschools #RocketScience and www.facebook.com/rhsschoolgardening

By admin