As reported in the Ilkley Gazette, Sacred Heart Catholic Primary School in Ilkley have launched their very own space balloon which consisted of a lightweight capsule, camera, tracker and parachute. All attached to a helium balloon, this carried the camera to the edge of space.
The aim of the mission was to capture an image of the curvature of earth. A group of parent volunteers funded the project and worked incredibly hard to make this project a success, following their first attempt in 2019, to mark the Apollo 11 take off, the parents did not give in when the film came back damaged.
A school spokesperson said: ‘This time the take-off went very smoothly and by the next day, our capsule had returned to earth. The film revealed the most awe-inspiring video footage culminating with the most wondrous image of our planet and the ozone layer. It was more than the school could have hoped for’.
‘The whole project has been fantastic and has captured the imaginations and curiosity of all the children. Teachers have used this opportunity to discuss the impact human beings have had on their planet and the children have been so enthusiastic to learn about space travel. We hope that we have encouraged children to dream big and that inspired some budding astronauts’.
‘The project has chimed with Cop26, and the children, who left their fingerprints in paint on the capsule, have touched the edge of space and feel ownership of this planet in a new way’.
‘Many of the returning astronauts from the Apollo missions to the moon, talked about the fragility of the earth, and the deep feeling to protect it, as it hung in front of them, with the blackness of space all around them. Fifty years later these words of the first space pioneers have rung true, with the man made problems of climate change, challenging all mankind.’
For more information about Sacred Heart’s space mission visit the special page on the school’s website https://www.sacredheartilkley.org/spaceballoon/