Children’s “Teddy-nauts” Shot Into Space

By Boonsri Dickinson | December 10, 2008 6:34 pm

teddy-bears.jpgFor the past three decades, the U.K.’s space policy has been in favor of sending robots into space, but not humans. And certainly not bears—of the living variety, that is. Last Thursday, a group of British school children tweaked that policy a bit when they sent teddy bears into space.

The project was part of the Cambridge University Spaceflight program, which worked with 11- and 12-year-olds from nearby schools to encourage science education. Not to get too technical, this is how the teddy bears made it into space. First, the students had to design space suits for the bears, so they could withstand the extreme temperatures and pressure present in near space.

On the day of the launch, the space team gathered at Churchill College with four space-suited teddy bears. The bears were placed in a foam box filled with instruments and cameras. When the conditions were just right, the “teddy-nauts” were launched into space with a helium balloon.

The bears rose 100,000 feet in the air and stayed there for two hours and nine minutes. Thanks to a GPS system attached to the bears, the children were able to recover the space-traveling teddy bears north of Ipswich.

Image: photobucket/ camcomms

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Space & Aliens Therefrom
MORE ABOUT: britain, education, space, toys
  • http://www.mazepath.com/uncleal/ Uncle Al

    It went up 100,000 feet but only traveled a few miles horizontally? What crap. Coat the balloon’s interior with Hi-Float and go for a month mission. Maybe they’ll touch down in an insanely isolated part of Earth and be worshipped as gods, such as in New Guinea or Pacoima.

    The next generation of spacsuit will be elasticized membrane plus air bubble alternating with

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atmospheric_diving_suit

    As with all things NASA, maximum cover-your-butt always leaves the back flap open.

NEW ON DISCOVER
OPEN
CITIZEN SCIENCE
ADVERTISEMENT

Discover's Newsletter

Sign up to get the latest science news delivered weekly right to your inbox!

Discoblog

Quirky, funny, and surprising science news from the edge of the known universe.
ADVERTISEMENT

See More

ADVERTISEMENT
Collapse bottom bar
+

Login to your Account

X
E-mail address:
Password:
Remember me
Forgot your password?
No problem. Click here to have it e-mailed to you.

Not Registered Yet?

Register now for FREE. Registration only takes a few minutes to complete. Register now »