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  • Writer's pictureMonash Tech School

Launch of Superspace

Last Monday Monash Tech School welcomed South Oakleigh College Year 7 students to partake in the first sessions of our newly developed Superspace program. We would like to share the following two summaries of Superspace provided by South Oakleigh College students and thank them for their participation in our program.

Student One -

On Monday and Tuesday, I took part in a program at Monash University called Superspace, along with my fellow South Oakleigh Secondary College year 7 accelerated science students. We participated in a number of fun activities all about what we will need to design a spacesuit. To design them we were split into some groups. Each group got a scenario, depending on what our scenario was we might have needed better communication, whilst we didn’t need too much oxygen.

The parts we learnt about were the: Exoskeleton, Communication, Scanning, Stabilisation, Oxygen and Materials. In the Exoskeleton class, we learnt about how they were wearable devices that works with us, some make you run faster while others make you strong. In communication, we were lucky enough to get to use a HoloLens. Which is a sophisticated communication device allowing us to be able to video chat, draw and send through documents. You can see everything around you as well as seeing the person you could be chatting with, while no one else can. In scanning, we used a scanning device that would tell us how many different types of minerals were in the rock and what they were. We also used one which you put in a gas that had been liquified and it would also tell you what it is made of. During stabilisation, we used gyroscopes to see how they moved and then we used a bicycle wheel and felt what it did when it was spinning and you move it around. Throughout oxygen, we did many different breathing activities and tracked our breathing rate. Lastly, in materials, we tested the insulation of the different materials to see which was best to use for our astronaut. At the end of each of the lesson, we bought the equipment better suited for our mission, with our fake coins.

Then on the second day we got to make our astronaut, the actual body is given to us but we have to cover it with our material and stick on our other equipment. Then at the very end of the course, they gave us badges so we could remember the experience. Overall my feeling about the program was that it was an awesome experience encouraging us to think outside the box and learn about space!

Student Two -

I loved the Superspace excursion! It was so much fun! We went through all the requirements of a spacesuit and tried a few things on. My favourite part was the hands-on stuff, feeling the fabric, trying on the exoskeleton, playing with the gyroscopes, and trying the escape boxes with the special helmets. It was really cool how they gave us a mission and how we had to work out what we needed; they didn’t just tell us. I think the fun experiments were a really good idea, and if I got the opportunity to do that again, I would do it.

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