Cyprus Mail

Bad weather stops second satellite launch by students


Bad weather may have kept micro-satellite PICO from breaking the world record last month, but congratulations were still in order for the young explorers who attempted it and their teacher, the meteorology department said on Wednesday.

After two failed attempts to break the world record by sending a micro-satellite into space to capture images and videos from an altitude of 147,648 feet, students from Pascal English School Larnaca will try again in the next five months, it added.

The PICO micro-satellite is one of the experiments carried out as part of the “SpaceUp Cyprus 2022” programme, which included around 2,000 participating pupils from 27 private and public schools.

“The first attempt took place in early January, when the micro-satellite reached 100,000 feet, sending back live data and high-definition images,” the met department said.

The second attempt, on February 18 at the Radiation Station of the Meteorology department and broadcast live to the participating schools.

“The micro-satellite reached 125,000 feet, but due to very strong winds at that altitude, its solar panels punctured the balloon, stopping its upward course and sending it into a freefall with the help of a parachute”.

The group of young space explorers will attempt to break the record again in the next five months, the department said.

It also said it provided know-how for the launch and elevation of the micro-satellite and gave information on the prevailing meteorological conditions at each point in its course.

“Congratulations are due to the young explorers, and their visionary professor Elpidoforos Anastasiou for his inspiring efforts,” it concluded, wishing them every success in their next attempt.

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