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Thales Alenia Space launches MARSBalloon

Thales Alenia Space has launched MARSBalloon, which gives primary and secondary students the chance to fly experiments and test technologies that could one day be destined for Mars.

Image courtesy Thales Alenia Space

Thales Alenia Space, a joint-venture between Thales (67%) and Leonardo (33%), is engaging students’ curiosity for space, science and life on Mars with the launch of MARSBalloon 2024.  

Led by Thales Alenia Space graduates and apprentices in the UK, MARSBalloon is a hands-on science project for primary and secondary students and shows how exciting and varied career opportunities in space, engineering and science can be - without putting on a space suit.

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Students work together to create experiments to test the response of electronics, materials, plants and even food to the harsh conditions in space. Experiments fit inside a small capsule and fly on the high altitude balloon, rising to an altitude of 30km, more than twice the height of commercial airliners where conditions are very similar to the surface of Mars  - including temperatures of -50°C and pressures 1/100th that of sea level.

This year’s MARSBalloon will also have a competitive element, with prizes awarded for primary and secondary categories for Best Innovation, Best Decoration, Engineers Choice and VIP Judge’s Choice award.

The deadline for registration is 8th March 2024 with the launch of the balloon in May.  

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Teachers can find out more about the MARSBalloon and download the information pack here: https://www.thalesgroup.com/en/futuremartians

Key dates for this year’s MARSBalloon:
8th March: Last day for Registration. The process take five minutes and can be done here.
30th April: Deadline for experiment delivery to Thales Alenia Space
May / June: MARSBalloon launch (depending on weather conditions)
 
 
    
 
 
 
 

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