Mon, December 08, 2008
Sci-Tech > Science

Teddy take-off: bears launched into space

2008-12-08 05:57:16 GMT2008-12-08 13:57:16 (Beijing Time)  China Daily

This Cambridge University press office (CUPO) handout shows two of the four teddy bears that were lauched to the edge of space. Four teddy bears, fully decked out in custom-made spacesuits, were launched to the edge of space this week as part of a British university experiment. [Agencies]

LONDON – Four teddy bears, fully decked out in custom-made spacesuits, were launched to the edge of space this week as part of a British university experiment.

Blasting off from Cambridge University's Churchill College on Monday, they were attached to a helium balloon and fitted with multiple cameras, a GPS receiver, flight computer and radio for the two-hour nine-minute flight, which saw them rise 30 kilometres (18.8 miles) above sea level.

The spacesuits were designed by local schoolchildren, as part of a project to engage youths in science and engineering, organised by the Cambridge University Spaceflight student club.

CU Spaceflight said the aim of the experiment was to find out which of the four spacesuits, each designed by a different group of students, best insulated the cuddly toys from the -53 degrees Celcius (-63 degrees Fahrenheit) temperatures.

"We want to offer young people the opportunity to get involved in the space industry whilst still at school and show that real-life science is something that is open to everybody," said Iain Waugh, CU Spaceflight's chief aeronautical engineer.

"High altitude balloon flights are a fantastic way of encouraging interest in science. They are easy to understand, and produce amazing results."

A Cambridge University spokeswoman noted: "No treasured possessions were endangered in this experiment."

(Agencies)

Add Your Comments:

Your Name:
Your Country:
Comment:
(English Only)
 
Please read our Terms of Service. Messages that harass, abuse or threaten others; have obscene or otherwise objectionable content; have spam, commercial or advertising content or links may be removed.

SPECIAL COVERAGE

MOST VIEWED

LATEST VIDEO

PICTURE GALLERY