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Orbital Space

P.O. Box 501 Mishrif

Postal Code 40156

Kuwait

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 Sahab Al-Shammari

 Fedha Almussalam

Experiment In Space!

STUDENT COMPETITION

For the first time in Kuwait, students are being given the opportunity to create an experiment that could be launched and conducted on the International Space Station (ISS). The winning experiment will be the first ever science experiment in space from Kuwait.


This competition is sponsored by Orbital Space as part of its efforts to promote interest in science and technology among the youth of Kuwait. It is enabled through an agreement with DreamUp PBC and Nanoracks LLC, which are working with NASA under a Space Act Agreement.


The competition is managed by Sahab Al-Shammari and Fedha Almussalam. Click Here to connect with them for more information.

The challenge

 

Propose an idea for an experiment to assess the impact of microgravity (the apparent absence of gravity, also called “weightlessness”) on a physical, chemical, or biological system. Research topics should be relevant to Kuwait. Topics could be within the following tracks:

 

Life Sciences:

  • Plant growth

  • Physiology and life cycles of microorganisms (e.g. bacteria)

  • Cell biology and growth (e.g. stem cells, beta cells, bone/cartilage, immune system, etc.)

  • Marine/desert microorganisms

  • Insect behavior

  • Food digestion and metabolism

  • Medicines and drug therapy

‚Äč

Physical Sciences:

  • Crystal growth

  • Fluid dynamics

  • Corrosion

  • Nanotechnology

The experiment must fit within the size of a special 10 milliliter silicon tube known as “MixStix” (see image below).

The tube keeps fluids, materials, chemicals, biological materials separate but allows mixing once in space (mixing will be done by an astronaut on ISS). The tube can hold 8.4 milliliters of up to 3 substances separately and allow several mixing possibilities (mixing sequences). The substances can be fluid, gas, solid/powder. The tube will stay on the ISS for 30 days and then returned to Earth.

Why should you be excited about this competition?

 

  • Opportunity to learn how real scientists conduct their experiments.

  • You can explore a topic that interests you and learn about microgravity (weightlessness).

  • Learn how science experiments in space are conducted.

  • Understand how physical and biological processes are different in the absence of gravity.

  • The uniqueness of a microgravity environment can enable the development of something new which is not possible to be developed on Earth.

  • University Admissions departments love this! It’s also a great project to reference in job interviews.

 

Why are we doing this:

 

  • To encourage and empower students to develop, design and conduct sci-entific experiments

  • To increase awareness about space missions and space environment and its potential impact on Kuwait

 

Eligibility:

 

  • The competition is open to students from all schools and universities in Kuwait between the ages of 13 and 23 (by December 2019).

 

 

How to participate:

 

  • The life cycle of “Experiment in Space” project takes one year. Once the proposed idea has been selected, the experiment will be developed into a payload for a space mission over a period of 4 months with a target to be launched to space by fall 2020.

  • Participation can be individual or team based, and should include a mentor (teacher/university faculty member/scientist affiliated with a school or academic/research institution in Kuwait).

  • Come up with an idea for your experiment and fill out the application form.

Competition Timeline & Milestones:

 

  • Competition Launch and ideas submission – October 3, 2019

  • Info sessions and Q&A – Oct. 15, Nov. 5, and Nov. 19, 2019

  • Ideas submission deadline – December 8, 2019

  • Selection of Finalist – January 12, 2020

  • Development of the experiment and payload Feb. to June, 2019

  • Experiment sent to NASA – July, 2020

  • Experiment launched to ISS – August, 2020

This competition is sponsored by Orbital Space as part of its efforts to promote interest in science and technology among the youth of Kuwait. It is enabled through an agreement with DreamUp PBC and Nanoracks LLC, which are working with NASA under a Space Act Agreement.