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Students dive deep into space industry skills

Manufacturing News

A team of Lockheed Martin space researchers, technicians and engineers from Australia and the US were on hand at the inaugural Young Space Explorers event to inspire the next generation of Australia’s skilled space workforce.

Young Space Explorers was conceived to connect Australia’s vibrant space industry, government and the space research community with students and their teachers.

Over a full-day programme, 250 Years 9 and 10 students from across New South Wales were given an immersive dive into the emerging Australian space industry, with displays and demonstrations from universities, industry, TAFE and the Australian Space Agency.

The hands-on space-themed challenges and technologies included robotics, hypersonics, rocketry, material sciences, astrobiology, satellites, planetary science, artificial intelligence and even a lunar rover demonstration.

The event was delivered in collaboration between the STEM Industry School Partnerships (SISP) and Regional Industry Education Partnerships (RIEP) programme within the NSW Department of Education, the University of New South Wales (UNSW) Canberra Space, the New South Wales Space Research Network (SRN) and the Australian Space Agency.

Lockheed Martin Australia’s Regional Director for Space David Ball said: “Lockheed Martin Australia is proud to sponsor the inaugural Young Space Explorers event.

“We believe the industry has an important role to play by investing in initiatives that can support the Australian Space Agency to realise its goals to triple the size of Australia’s space industry to AU$12 billion and create up to 20,000 new Australian jobs by 2030.”

“Australia has one of the fastest growing space sectors in the world, making attracting more students to pursue study in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) critical to realising a sustainable, sovereign space industry.”

Russell Boyce, director of UNSW Canberra Space said that with an emphasis on immersive learning, Young Space Explorers had been designed to open students’ eyes to the breadth of space careers available and help equip teachers with the skills, insights and confidence to use space in their classrooms.

“We are very grateful to all of the speakers and exhibitors who took part in the Expo for bringing the huge variety of STEM degree programs and STEM careers to life.”

During the event, members of the Lockheed Martin Space team joined the judging panel for the final round of The Great Space Pitch, where four school teams vied for the title of best space technology innovation with 5-minute presentations.

The event closed with a space sector networking session for university students, industry, government, policymakers, Defence and other space agencies.

Picture: Lockheed Martin Australia

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