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Student research project launches into space

Irish Centre for Composites Research helps bring Limerick students’ project to the International Space Station

An Orbital Sciences rocket launched from NASA Wallops Flight Facility in the USA this weekend (Sunday thirteenth July) bringing with it a test composed by Limerick understudies. The understudies from St Nessan’s Community College, Limerick were victors of a rival ‘The Only Way is Up’ run by the Irish Center for Composites Research (Icomp) which offered them an ideal chance to bring their trial to the International Space Station (ISS). The investigation will research the impacts of microgravity on fortified solid while using 30 days circling the earth.

The test was composed and assembled by Jason Hannan, Kevin Hanley, Jamie O’connell, Jonathan Roche with backing from their educator Gavin Doyle while utilizing the ability of the Irish Center for Composites Research and Irish Cement’s lab at its Drogheda office. Irish Cement brought the experience to life by bringing the gathering to visit the NASA office in May.

Dr. Terry Mcgrail, Director of Icomp, clarifies why activities, for example, ‘The Only Way is Up’ are essential: “The investigation of Science, Maths and Engineering opens up an universe of interest and erudite incitement which is fulfilling in itself as well as lead to a generally remunerated profession as far as occupation fulfillment and making a positive commitment to society.”

The understudies needed to test how cement sets in micro-gravity. St Nessan’s understudy, Jamie O’connell clarifies: “We used around two months in class attempting to get the mixture right. This is the kind of thing that you can’t learn in a course book. You need to work out the issues and the answers for yourself and see what works best.”

The analysis will be “actuated” by a space explorer on the space station to blend the parts in the tube: Irish Cement, water, sand/rock blend and Mafic Basalt strands. It will then be returned later in the late spring for the understudies to do post spaceflight dissection on the trial and contrast it straightforwardly with a ground controlled investigation.

The organizer Dr. Norah Patten, Communication and Outreach Manager at Icomp, comments. “All the group here at Icomp have been charmed to work with these inventive understudies. The task, which has placed them in contact with specialists, scientists and even a space explorer, opens avenues to the energizing open doors the universe of science can bring. The excursion to NASA supported by Irish Cement was past all our desires and its awesome to see this investigation and all the work that went into it at last propelled into space.”

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