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Scarborough Young Scientists Reach For The Stars

Scarborough Young Scientists Reach For The Stars

Published by the Yorkshire Coast Radio News Team at 3:45pm 17th November 2015.

Students from three Scarborough schools won a place at the national finals of the UK Space Design Competition (UKSDC) this weekend. 

Twelve students from Scarborough College, Scarborough Sixth Form College and Scalby School competed in the Yorkshire Regional Heat of the Competition, which was hosted by the University of Huddersfield. 

Five companies of students from across Yorkshire were challenged to design a spaceport that could be used to transport people and cargo between Earth and Mars.  The criteria and technical information to be included was extensive and difficult to cover during the day’s allocated design time. 

James Eaton, 18, of Scarborough Sixth Form College and company president, said, “UKSDC provided an amazing experience.  Having only a day to design a space station from the ground up challenged everyone’s ability to work as a team.  It forced us to advance our knowledge of fields that we were all interested in.” 

Peter Finch, Scarborough College teacher, recruited students from schools in the town having been unable to confirm 12 of his own school’s students to attend the competition. 

Peter said, “The success of this ‘Scarborough Schools’ collaboration has already instigated some discussion between Scarborough College and Scalby School about extending the  partnership on a more regular basis, enabling well-subscribed STEM activities and competitions to take place more frequently than individual schools could resource.”

The students worked together throughout the day to produce a presentation to be given to a panel of expert judges that evening.  All of the participating schools performed outstandingly.  However, there could only be one winner!

Lucy Spencer, 17, of Scarborough College, said, “The competition was a stressful but exciting experience.  The room was filled with suspense as we waiting for the results.  They finally announced the winner and we were completely shocked when we realised that it was us that had won!  We were all extremely happy.”

The team will join schools and science clubs from across the country at the national finals held at Imperial College London in March 2016. They will be competing for a place representing the UK at the International Space Settlement Design Competition held in the US in summer 2016. 

The 2015-16 UK Space Design Competition is supported by the Royal Academy of Engineering, the UK Space Agency and the Space Science & Engineering Foundation (registered charity number 1142329) alongside other generous sponsors.

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