Competition calls students to the space industry


Monday, 03 May, 2021


Competition calls students to the space industry

South Australia’s first satellite will be built, launched and monitored by SASAT1 Space Services Mission, with the aim of using data collected to benefit farmers through water monitoring to help predict crop yields and to support emergency services in mitigating incidents like bushfires.

Primary and secondary school students across the state now invited to join a competition and give the satellite a name that reflects South Australia’s heritage, culture and values.

The mission represents a major step for SA’s burgeoning space industry and Premier Steven Marshall said the naming competition presents an extraordinary opportunity for the next generation of space leaders to contribute to the milestone South Australian space mission.

“What better way to reflect the future of South Australia in our own space mission than to have a South Australian school student name the satellite itself,” said Marshall.

“The SASAT1 Space Services Mission represents a leap forward in our state’s already thriving space ecosystem and demonstrates my government’s commitment to delivering on progressive, innovative ideas in partnership with South Australian industry.

“There is a universe of careers emerging from the space sector, and one of our priorities is developing a targeted space education program aimed at inspiring our young stars; the SASAT1 Space Services Mission is a wonderful example of this in action,” he said.

The small satellite will be designed, built and tested in South Australia by local company Inovor Technologies while Adelaide company Myriota will provide Internet of Things (IoT) services for the mission, collecting the data and returning it to Earth. The SmartSat Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) will lead the mission as well as application prototyping.

The satellite will be launched from South Australia in 2022, spending three years in low Earth orbit.

SmartSat CRC Chief Executive Professor Andy Koronios said the SASAT1 mission is an opportunity to inspire young South Australians about future opportunities in space and demonstrate its impact on everyday life.

“We hope this competition will spark the imagination of young people around our state, not only to submit a name for the satellite, but also to picture themselves pursuing a career in the space industry right here in South Australia.

“The SASAT1 Space Services Mission will contribute to the lives of everyday South Australians, by providing sensor and Earth observation data for more accurate water monitoring and better prediction of crop yields, for example,” Prof Koronios said.

Minister for Education John Gardner said the competition is a fantastic opportunity for South Australian students to participate in a landmark moment in this state’s expanding space industry.

“The education system is geared up to support students to pursue careers in this important sector and I am sure this exciting opportunity will inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers to aim for the stars,” Gardner said.

Information packs for the naming competition, including educational resources, will be supplied to every South Australian school early in Term 2 of 2021. More information is available at saspacemission.com.au.

Image credit: ©stock.adobe.com/au/denisismagilov

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