Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Notes from Wednesday

Hello everyone

A busy day today with the students engaged in the variety of activities that are available for them here.  Tom is posting photos- a picture tells a thousand words.
Jonathan, Anna, Nick and Bry had their turn in the SCUBA tank.  Its an amazing process to watch- the students being prepared to dive and use the SCUBA equipment and 20 minutes later they are playing with bowling balls on the bottom of the pool.  We were told tonight that this is the only place outside of Russia where this sort of UAT (Under Water Astronaut training) training takes place.
A highlight for me today was going to see the Saturn 5 rocket.  It is amazing to see such a complicated piece of technology- the Rocket on display is one that wasn't used- it had been in storage somewhere, before they put it in its own museum.  The Saturn V rockets fired sequentially as they took the Apollo missions from take off through to the earths orbit and finally into the moons orbit.  One of the sections had to fire to to get into the earths orbit and then turn off.  It then had to be restarted and fire again to take the astronauts into the moons orbit. You realise the magnitude of the engineering and technology when you think what they had to control to make this happen.  You couldn't get out and wind the rubber band tighter or worse still "please wait while windows restarts".
The students had their final practice missions today before the big missions they all go through tomorrow.  The missions are scripted but their are non scripted parts the students don't know about that will test their problem solving skills.  Tonight the students are being told by their counsellors who will have which role tomorrow.  We know that Charlotte will be Commander of the ascent during their teams extended mission and Josh C will be flight engineer and mission specialist.  I am sure we will be told about the other 13 students roles as they are told them by their counsellors.  Millie is very proud of getting all of her check lists correct in her landing simulation this afternoon.
It is hard to find the students sometimes as they get spread far and wide through the complex.  Not helped by the massive thunder storms that are coming and going, when, their is lightening the students aren't allowed outside because of the slim chance of lightening strike.  They monitor the weather constantly and we have been told if there are huge storms likely we will be taken into the storm cellar.  (the storms don't worry me particularly but there are lot of children here doing other programmes who are 12 and under- being in a storm cellar with them may be trying).
Tom and I had to go and find a Walmart today to buy Muesli bars for the students, Granola bars over here, Often dinner is before 5pm and that's a long time until breakfast.  The students aren't allowed food in their rooms- so we had to sneak them in like contraband. 
The students continue to be amazing- they are positive and friendly to everyone.  Some of the students from other schools are looking very tired but ours are just trucking along.Sometimes they have wee moans but to us only.  We are so enjoying being away with them.  We are starting to put plans together for Friday.  But they are a surprise for the students so we can't tell you all either as we know some of the students are also reading the Blog.

Since this is your last day of school/work before Good Friday have a happy and safe holiday weekend.  More posts tomorrow.


1 comment:

  1. HI everyone,
    It looks like you are having an awesome time and I am thoroughly enjoying the blog. Good luck for your missions tomorrow, if you reach the moon you've actually gone too far.
    Happy Easter to you all, I wonder if Tom and Louisa are organizing an Easter Egg hunt on Sunday. (or church !)
    Tom and Louisa, thank you so much for everything you are doing.
    Take care and stay out of those storms.