SpaceEngineeringstudentsRALWith the new school year fully underway; the National Space Academy is pleased to announce the continued success of the Space Engineering Course.

 As part of their course, the current group of students visited the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory Space Department.The day included a tour around the space testing facilities and precision development facility, as well as an opportunity to control cutting edge robotic rovers.  

They were also tasked with constructing their own space telescope in a challenge designed by the RAL Space scientists who were instrumental in the recently completed Herschel space mission. The students were identified by the RAL scientists as being some of the best who had ever taken up this challenge; an accolade not easy to achieve.


 The current students are following in the footsteps of the first cohort of Space Engineers students to complete the course who are now making their first ventures out into the professional and academic world.  With a tremendous 95% pass rate at the A-level physics and Maths component of the course and a 100% Distinction* achievement in the Level 3 BTEC Engineering component; the students had a range of choices available to them. The majority have taken up places at university studying either physics or engineering disciplines, with one accepting a place to study in the USA.  A small but significant minority have taken on the world of work, with one student gaining a place on the highly sought after apprenticeship scheme with Airbus Defense and Space.


This wide range of first-rate destinations illustrates how the Space Engineering course prepares students for further study not just within the space, aerospace and physics sectors, but also shows how the skills developed on the course are recognised by a wider audience of employers and education providers. All the staff, funders and supporters who were involved in setting-up and running the course are immensely proud of the students' achievement and wish them all the very best for their future studies and careers.


A celebration evening was held at the Space Centre in July for the first students to complete the course. It was an opportunity for Loughborough College and the National Space Academy to congratulate the students on their dedication and enthusiasm for the programme. Students, parents and carers were treated to presentations and awards from Loughborough College and National Space Academy staff.

 Andy McMurray Head of Teaching and Learning at the National Space Academy, who attended the RAL visit had this to say:

"A great experience for our Space Engineers and thanks to all at RAL. The demonstration of engineering at the micro-level was just amazing!"