What if the center of our galaxy isn’t a black hole after all? What if it’s a core of dark matter? According to a new and fascinating study, those observed orbits of the galactic center, as well as the orbital velocities in the outer regions of the galaxy, might actually be easier to explain if it was a core of dark matter at the heart of the galaxy, rather than a black hole.
One Giant Leap News
Gadget Girl, Nicola Baker, has been awarded the inaugural Yes! Youth Encouragement Scholarship by the Rotary Club of Sydney.
Welcome to our first newsletter of 2021. I would like to begin this issue with a Tribute to Tom Nolan. Tom was diagnosed with a most aggressive form of brain cancer one month after he retired from NASA JPL last January. The news was devastating. One Giant Leap Australia and Tom had worked together on some incredible plans and we were looking forward to building capacity of the ‘Space, STEM and Your Future’ program. Tom passed away 6 pm on 31st December 2020 from pneumonia. You can read his tribute and if you wish to contribute to the Australian Tom Nolan INSPIRE Scholarship fund you are very welcome to. Our thoughts are with his wife and family.
Charon (discovered in 1978) is the largest satellite of the five known moons of the dwarf planet Pluto. The name Charon originated from Rome, meaning the mythological ferryman of the Underworld, who carried souls across Acheron a mythic river surrounding Pluto. Charon is the most compelling satellite of the three moons Miranda, Triton and Charon due to its distinct geological features and possibility for existence of life. If a spacecraft were to orbit Charon’s surface or potentially disembark, the rover could find an undiscovered landscape consisting of many exotic and pristine land factors that may result in life inaugurated.
We believe that NASA should pick Charon, the largest moon of Pluto to explore further and to gain a greater understanding of the evolution of outer space. Specifically, how did the moon form and continue to evolve after (we think) it collided with Pluto? There might be life on this fascinating moon that we have not discovered yet. Perhaps not life as we know it as being so far away from the sun it is very cold, but where there is ice there is water! The discovery of water on Charon means that it could sustain forms of life, but further exploration is needed to confirm if any liquid water is actually available.
As we all know, the necessary ingredients (or building blocks for life) are: 1) water, which we know is there 2) gases (oxygen, hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen, sulphur and phosphorus) and 3) some kind of energy source. Also, if there is water on Charon, we could possibly be able to use the water on Earth and we would be able to fill up all water systems. From the pictures taken from Voyager 2 there is a reddish-brown cap on the north pole of Charon. This organic material is believed to be produced from gases released from the atmosphere of Pluto. Again, this shows that Charon could sustain life and suggests the second building block is already working. The third building block for life is energy. Charon is too far away from the sun to get heat and solar energy, but scientists could look into other ways to produce energy on Charon through movement or friction. Let us explore this great moon and find out new and exciting energy sources that may increase our understanding of outer space.
Triton, Neptune’s largest moon contains many mysteries yet to be discovered. Its attributes have long been unknown to scientists. Photographic images taken by Voyager 2 in 1989 showed glimpses of its true uniqueness. However, still to this day, further investigation is required to greater our understanding. Therefore, it would be the most suitable moon to send a robotic spacecraft to.
In the past, we have only been able to see half of what this moon contains. Through the eyes of Voyager 2 passing by on its mission to study the outer planets, images of a grey, brown moon were taken. In these photos, we saw that the surface contained a thin layer of frozen nitrogen with occasional volcanic plains. It also had scattered geysers which erupted nitrogen gas. Data sent back by Voyager 2 showed that the atmosphere contained mainly nitrogen, although there was a small percentage of methane, mainly due to its volcanic activity. Its mantle is made of ice with a core believed to be a combination of rock and metal; however, this is still undetermined.
DJI and DigiDIRECT provided the sponsorships that put the incredible One Giant Leap Australia Space Camp 2020 Tour into the grasp of two Australian students. The process was gruelling, and the competition was tough. Luke Pringle from Cherrybrook Technology High and Georgia Diab from Cerdon College found they have the ‘Right Stuff’ and gained $3500
Lucas Bethencourt’s ambitions are beyond sky-high – they’re intergalactic.
The 14-year-old from St Georges Basin hopes to one day become an astronaut and pilot, to be “part of the evolution of space travel”.
Lucas is articulate and softly spoken, but his face lights up when he talks about the stars.
“To discover new things, all the wonders of the universe, is fascinating to me,” he said.
“And the technological advances we’ve made since the 60s – recently we’ve gone from having to throw rockets away to being able to land them vertically, which is really cool.”
A Navy Aviation Engineer has taken one small step towards a truly stellar ambition after attending Space Camp 2019.
Lieutenant Kate Cox, a Certification Engineer at the Capability and Sustainment Group’s Navy Army Aviation Acquisition Project Office, spent 10 days travelling across the United States, visiting The Spaceship Company (founded by Virgin Galactic’s Sir Richard Branson), the Northrup Grumman Headquarters and the US Space and Rocket Centre.
Facilitated by One Giant Leap Australia (OGL), the program fosters an interest in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), as both a study option and as a career.
“I absolutely loved my time at Space Camp and would thoroughly recommend it to students and young-at-heart adults alike,” Lieutenant Cox said.
STEAM Dreaming in Armidale was an outstanding opportunity – jam packed with fun and information to better understand the Indigenous culture and their traditions.
Hearing stories about the land and early Aborigines was an awesome twist on perspective. The morals and wisdom shared from special speakers as very moving and made everyone attending look at themselves and each other differently and a much more positive and motivated manner.
The Destination Imagination Kids Day workshop was a blast. Children aged 4 to 14 were engaged in a variety of activities that catered for different interests and talents.
He has received this amazing DUX award for his work in AAFC. The Royal Australian Air Force Cadet program is one that students should participate in.
NINE teenagers from around NSW gathered at One Giant Leap Australia headquarters in South Windsor this week for a four-day ‘camp’, during which the kids undertook leadership training to become the first group of One Giant Leap Australia student ambassadors.
The group, which included two Hawkesbury High School kids, along with others travelling from areas including Albury, Wagga Wagga and Sydney, stayed at the home of One Giant Leap Australia directors Jackie and Bob Carpenter who run the One Giant Leap Australia Foundation, helping kids from around the country attend Space Camp in America and built their STEM skills.
Thank you for entering our ‘Design Todd Barber an Australian Space Shirt’ competition! After careful consideration and much debate, the following students are to be congratulated
The Australian Space Agency was launched last year in a bid to grow the nation’s space industry. But to achieve its goal of creating 20,000 new jobs in the sector by 2030, we’ll need a whole new generation of space professionals, and that includes inspiring more young women to join the STEM sector. A team
Just before this year’s National Science Week, NASA JPL scientists will be touching down in the Territory! Our speakers include Deb Brice who has been a Marine Science educator for more than 25 years and has worked with NASA JPL, NOAA and the National Science Foundation (to name a few) to enlighten us on Science
From Tom Nolan: I received this wonderful email from a boy who wrote to me after last year’s Space, STEM and Your Future (SSYF) events, and again now to let us know that he is excited to have tickets to this year’s SSYF events. To me, this young man has already launched his career, lifted
To mark the 50th Anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing mission, seven scientists and engineers from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in the USA will be visiting Wagga Wagga on the weekend of 27-28 July 2019. The event is open to adults and children over 10 years of age, and will be held at
The inaugural Future Space Scholar competition being coordinated by the International Teenager Competition and Communication Centre (ITCCC). The ITCCC aims to introduce the best international resources to educate and develop youth by developing high quality education products. For years, ITCCC has worked with organisations managing international competitions for teenagers. We connect students with a multitude
Celebrate the 50th Anniversary of NASA’s Apollo Moon Landing with Educational Resources and Projects for Kids
This year marks the 50th anniversary of humans landing on the Moon. Now NASA is headed to the Moon once again, using it as a proving ground for a future human mission to Mars. Use this opportunity to get students excited about Earth’s natural satellite, the amazing feats accomplished 50 years ago and plans for
Fifty years ago today, the massive Saturn V rocket for the Apollo 11 mission that would fulfill President Kennedy’s goal of “landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to Earth” before the end of the decade began rolling out to Launch Complex 39A at the Kennedy Space Center, Florida. That same day,
Exploring for life in deep ice on Earth and the Ocean Worlds of our Solar System. Presented by Mike Malaska Deep glacial ice is one of the most extreme environments on Earth, and yet life can survive. Without sunlight, in sub-freezing temperatures. What kinds of things live there? How do they survive? How do we
NATIONAL SMALL BUSINESS CHAMPION! One Giant Leap Australia from South Windsor has been named Champion Educational Services at the Australian Small Business Champion Gala Dinner and Awards Ceremony held on Saturday 61h April at The Star – Sydney, with over 1,100 guests in attendance. The Australian Small Business Champion Awards is the only national recognition
“Deep glacial ice is one of the most extreme environments on Earth, and yet life can survive. Without sunlight, in sub-freezing temperatures. What kinds of things live there? How do they survive? How do we detect it? This presentation will take us from field work on the Greenland Ice Sheet to an ice laboratory at
Teams Canis and Capricorn (Years 5 and 6) – 8 am to 9:45 pm • Stars and constellations Alpha Mission • Planet Quest Mars Rover building • Mars Probe design 1/6th Gravity chair • Shuttle history Astronomer talk Teams Luna and Phobos (Years 7 and 8) – 8 am to 10:15 pm • Rocket construction
Well – we have finally arrived at Space Camp. The adventure started at 3:15 am with a wake-up call and then the first 23 intrepid travelers were gathered together for their departure on the 3:45 am bus. Next came the 5:15 am then the 5:30 am wake up calls. 4 Buses in all and 8
Four different wake-up calls, three different departure times, three different airlines, three different routes with six different flights…but…eventually all of us arrived in Huntsville to start Space Camp!!!! Whilst all chaperones reported the flights were very quiet, the excitement reached ignition and blast off when, on final approach, groups noticed the white and red rocket
Another early start as we had another ride in LA traffic to Universal Studios, but we still arrived as the gates opened. Through the gates and the 122 strong grey wave headed straight for the trolley tour of the Universal back lot. The kids were enthralled by the Jaws shark, cars from many films, survived
A short walk and we were through the gates into Disneyland. Everyone split up and spent the entire day in the Wonderland World of Disney. Rides, characters, entertainment, shops, rides, characters, entertainment and shops filled everyone’s day. Space Mountain, Splash Mountain, Haunted Mansion, Indiana Jones, Pirates of the Caribbean, Mad Hatters Tea Party and, of
The teachers drew the very short straw as they were on the road with their bagged breakfasts at 6:15 am. Nearly two hours of LA traffic later, they arrived at the Californian Science Centre (CSC) for a fun-filled day of professional development activities. All the teachers were amazed at the elementary (aka primary) school that
Big 35 hr day today/yesterday. We arrived in LA before we left Sydney! Breakfast at Denny’s for one group then on to Northrop Grumman, presentation by Space X and dinner at Bubba Gump’s Shrimp Factory. Both kids and adults are shattered and off to bed early for a big day at the Californian Science centre
See Science and Technology in Action Join us at the 2018 Innovation Games and learn about what we do at One Giant Leap Australia. Come down to meet us, and get the opportunity fly a drone or test out one of our flight simulators. Find Out More When? Saturday18 August 2018 What? Science Festival as
Space, STEM and your Future Learn about Space and STEM from: Mars Robotics Engineer – Paulo Younse and Marine Biologist – Debra Brice Register Now When? Tuesday24 July 2018 What? Public STEM discovery seminar Where? Shore School, North Sydney Campus, Blues Street Earth and Space Science Discovery Seminar Join us and hear from our amazing guest speakers: Discover
Meet JettHelp send him to Space! Jett suffered a brain tumour and lost his vision suddenly and permanently at 8 years of age, but that hasn’t stopped him. Jett has won a scholarship to Space Camp for visually impaired students at the Space Centre in Alabama, USA. The first vision impaired primary student in NSW
Deep Space Teacher PDLearn how to operate the Goldstone Apple Valley Radio Telescope (GAVRT) After completing this training, you will be able to guide your students to take control of a 34-metre decommissioned radio telescope. Students can collect real-time data on deep space and collaborate with professional radio astronomers in analysing the data. Interested? Register
Learn more about For the first time in our history, Macquarie University and One Giant Leap Australia will host 3 days of unique science and engineering experiences for high school students. Register before 20 July 2018 to get involved and be inspired! Register Now When? Wednesday 25 – Friday 27 July 2018 8:30am – 3:00pm
Huntsville Alabama used to be the ‘watercress capital’. It is now Rocket City. Australian companies are now starting to open there! It used to be number 10 on this list. Now it is number 1. The top STEM City – read this and you will understand why we have been taking Australians to Huntsville since
In December, we received a request to assist Ed Buckbee (founder of Space Camp) with his plans to visit Australia and New Zealand for the first time. He was working in this part of the world during that time, and we were asked to assist with arranging talks about his passion, ‘The Real Space Cowboys’
We had a great opportunity this January to have a stand at the Australian Scout Jamboree. This is the same as your Boy Scouts in the USA, with one exception; we have both boys and girls in our scouting movement. This Jamboree is only held once every three years and circulates through three different locations
On July 8-15, Space Camp hosted our annual International Space Camp week, and this year we had more than 15 countries attend. The U.S. Teachers of the Year from U.S. territories and all 50 states also attended. International educators participated in a comprehensive program to promote interest in space science and exploration as well as
Krit Kunplin from Thailand, and Jose Santana from Dominican Republic Krit Kunplin played a leading role in bringing the NASA Space Exhibition to Thailand, which was the first country in South East Asia to host this NASA exhibition. During the President George W. Bush administration, Kunplin served as an international reporter and broadcaster for Voice