Walton students take on ‘Possum 13’ space challenge

Space enthusiasts and budding astronauts at Walton Academy have taken part in the Possum 13 challenge – a microgravity flight competition for female students aged between 13-17 years.

Here, challenge leader Sophia explains how the Walton team got involved:

As a space enthusiast when I came across project possum 13, I was very much intrigued. So, when I saw that they do annual microgravity flight challenges for a team between the ages of 13 and 17 I knew that I had to participate. I knew that my friends Isioni and Meenakshi would also be interested as they also enjoy science, we all agreed that it was a great opportunity and became involved. We asked if Miss Sharp would be our mentor and she agreed. 

“We wanted to study the first impacts on the bacteria and if there were any immediate structural changes caused by the microgravity environment.”

After ages of brainstorming, researching, and hard work we submitted our proposal. Our proposal was about the initial reactions of the bacterium E.coli when it hits microgravity. We wanted to study the first impacts on the bacteria and if there were any immediate structural changes caused by the microgravity environment. This would provide some insight on the inner workings of the bacteria and how it’s pathology may change in space.

However, we did not become a finalist. But we aim to improve ready for next year and use our experience from this year for when we reapply. This is an incredible opportunity and I recommend it to any space/science nerds like us.”

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