What is the National Space Academy?

Anu Ojha OBE

Director, National Space Academy

Anu Ojha is Director of the UK’s National Space Academy programme and a Director of the National Space Centre – the UK’s largest visitor centre for space science and astronomy. A member of the Space Growth Partnership team formulating the long-term industry/government/academia growth plan for the UK space sector, he is the lead for Skills/Training/Education in the UK Government’s programmes of strategic collaboration in Space Science and Technology with China and the Gulf States. Appointed in 2016 as an Honorary Professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Leicester, Anu is a Co-Investigator for the SPLIT planetary geotechnics sampling tool being developed by the University for use on future exploration missions and was Principal Investigator for the Astro Academy Principia educational experiment programme conducted by European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut Tim Peake aboard the International Space Station. He is also a member of the Skills and Engagement Advisory Board of STFC – the UK’s main Research Council for particle physics and astronomy.

A former Advanced Skills Teacher (AST), Assistant Headteacher and National Lead Practitioner (Physics) for the UK Specialist Schools and Academies Trust, Anu has led the development and delivery of National and International teacher training and student programmes for the UK Space Agency and ESA. He has worked as a consultant for ESA using data from the SOHO orbiting solar observatory and Mars Express mission and has written and presented numerous international teaching films for ESA targeted for European students and teachers.

Anu continues to teach physics on the National Space Academy’s Space Engineering (A level pre-University) and Higher Apprenticeship (undergraduate) courses run in partnership with Loughborough College and the University of Leicester. In 2014 he was appointed OBE for services to science education and in 2018 was invited to join ESA’s Human Spaceflight and Exploration Science Advisory Committee (HESAC) – the senior advisory body to ESA’s Director of Human Spaceflight and Robotic Exploration on all matters concerning scientific exploitation of human spaceflight, microgravity and exploration programmes.

Over the last twenty years Anu has also continued his involvement in high-altitude expeditions, free-diving and scuba diving and has a deep interest in human performance/physiological science in extreme environments. A current skydiver with over 1300 jumps, Anu was involved as an independent science analyst for the Red Bull Stratos stratospheric jump programme and is supporting the development of the Blue Abyss project – to build the world’s largest neutral buoyancy facility in the United Kingdom.


 

"As a species we have always wondered what is over the horizon - that intellectual journey that humanity finds itself on has its greatest expression in space science. Who wouldn’t - or couldn’t - be inspired by this?"

More about Anu:

Board memberships and other roles:

STFC Skills and Engagement Advisory Board

President – Astronautic Records Commission (ICARE) and Vice-President, Federation Aeronautique Internationale (FAI)

Honorary Professor – Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Leicester

Lloyds Register Foundation International Conference October 2016 –"Education, risk and inspiration – a view from space" :  keynote lecture on safety in human spaceflight and the work of the National Space Academy - watch the video.



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