UAE Space Agency sponsors summer camps to prepare students to enter the space industry

03 September 2019

As part of its summer program, the UAE Space Agency sponsored a series of space summer camps organized by Krypto Labs, Compass International, and Yahsat, as well as the ‘Journey to Mars’ Summer Program. The camps were developed for students of various ages to introduce them to the space industry and prepare them to become future space pioneers.

The summer camps, which attracted more than 236 students, aim to inspire students to join the space sector in the future and contribute to advancing it. At the camps, students attended special courses about space exploration and participated in activities that provided them with hands-on experience, while also teaching them how to work as part of a team and be innovative.

His Excellency Dr. Eng. Mohammed Al Ahbabi, Director General of the UAE Space Agency, said: “One of the UAE Space Agency’s main objectives is to raise students’ awareness of the importance of exploring and utilising space for the benefit of humanity. As such we are committed to collaborating with top academic institutions and private sector stakeholders to provide students with a chance to familiarize themselves with the space industry through special seasonal camps.”

“Through these camps we also hope to ensure the long-term sustainability of the UAE’s space program and contribute to the achievement of national human capacity development goals by inspiring and educating the next generation of space pioneers. We are proud of all the students who have attended camps this summer and we hope to see many of them again in the coming years,” added H.E. Dr. Eng. Al Ahbabi.

Krypto Labs’ summer camp was held between 7 and 25 July, and was aimed at students between 9 and 15 years old. The camp’s AstroBio workshop allowed students to gain practical knowledge about biochemistry in space and the Space Robotics Academy Crash Course introduced students to robotics and the basics of Artificial Intelligence (AI) through an applied activity in which they were tasked with creating their own replica Mars rovers. Finally, the Space Robotics Academy Advanced Bootcamp, aimed at students between 15 and 18 years old, allowed the young talent to integrate AI, space science, robotics, and 3D printing to overcome some specific space related challenges.

Compass International organized and held its 5-day Summer Camp at the Virginia International Private School in Abu Dhabi, from 7 to 11 July. The program focused on topics like living and working in space and Martian geology. The program also included activities for students of different ages, which gave them practical experience with various space elements. The activities included space engineering instant challenges, a mission patch design session and the construction of a real chemical powered rocket, during which younger students had a chance to build a single stage rocket while older students built a two-stage more difficult type.

The UAE Space Agency’s Emirati Youth Council collaborated with YahSat Youth Council to launch a space camp that aimed to introduce participants to the space sector through providing them with introductory tours at different space entities in the UAE. Students between 15 and 19 years old participated in this two-week initiative and had a valuable learning experience about the local space industry.

The UAE Space Agency also sponsored the ‘Journey to Mars’ Summer Program, which was held in partnership with the University of Colorado Boulder between 28 July and 10 August. The program covered the history of Mars exploration and the Hope Probe, with undergraduate students visiting the Discovery Space Foundation in Colorado Springs. They explored the surface of Mars using Google Mars and experimented with simulations of robots on the Red Planet.