Our four FIRST LEGO teams have been meeting twice a week since August. They wanted to share with you highlights of their Into Orbit research projects.
FLL Team 2641 CM Blues
Hello from the CM Blues Team! Our team number is 2641 and consists of 8 members: Sophia, A.G., Amy, Eternity, Noah, Peter, and Madison. Our Into Orbit project is called “Cooling Off” and the problem is about the function of spacesuits. In 2013, Italian astronaut Luca Parmitano nearly drowned during a spacewalk. The cause was from a leaky drink bag. This most likely happened during the manufacturing of the helmet. They have already solved this problem, but we wanted to give a suggestion to NASA, so we came up with a way to showcase the air ventilation system. The materials we used for our prototype were sponges, a toy space helmet, flexible vinyl tubes, an air pumper, and a water brush. First, we marked the spot and our mentor drilled a hole into the toy space helmet. Next, we weaved the flexible vinyl tubes through the holes. After that, we hot glued the tubes to the inside of the space helmet. Then, we hot glued the sponges to the helmet. Later, we attached the tubing to the air pump. Finally we took the water brush and squirted some water down the tubes. When air would be pumped down the tube, the water would be carried with it, creating moist air. If the water would ever leak again, the sponges would absorb all the water, allowing the astronaut to complete the spacewalk. Some of our resources were articles from the following websites: https://www.sciencenewsforstudents.org/article/want-tougher-space-suit-just-add-liquid, https://sservi.nasa.gov/articles/the-need-for-conductive-space-suits/, https://www.nasa.gov/audience/foreducators/spacesuits/facts/index.html, https://cen.acs.org/articles/89/i19/Saving-Space-Suits.html, and https://www.space.com/24835-spacesuit-water-leak-nasa-investigation.html.
FLL Team 4212 Dot Dot Dot
Hello from the Dot Dot Dot Team! Our team number is 4212 and consists of seven members: Lucia, Camille, Dusty, Swathi, Jack, Gunnar, and Naima. Our project for the FLL “Into Orbit” challenge is to find solutions to health problems for astronauts, such as homesickness, isolation and depression. Our team chose to work on a solution for all of these potential problems and is designed to help astronauts relax and feel calm. Feeling relaxed and calm would ultimately help fight homesickness, isolation and depression. Our project that we are working on this year is carabiners + resistance bands and a yoga mat with velcro. The purpose of the velcro is to hold the astronaut on the mat while in micro gravity while the resistance bands and carabiners function to hold down the yoga mat so that that it doesn’t float away. We found our background information from multiple websites, including https://phys.org/news/2017-09-e-mental-health-tool-key-astronauts.html, https://www.nasa.gov/feature/conquering-the-challenge-of-isolation-in-space-nasa-s-human-research-program-director, https://www.nasa.gov/hrp/bodyinspace, and https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/guest-blog/mental-health-in-outer-space/. See you in Outer Space!
FLL Team 18137 The Green Gears
Hello, this is the Green Gears team 18137. Our team consists of seven members, Brady, Caitlin, Mahika, Pranita, Gianna, Ayli, and Kyleigh. This year’s FLL theme is “Into Orbit.” There are many health issues occurring in space but my team chose to focus on astronauts getting weaker when returning from space to Earth. This is a problem because astronauts do not notice that they are getting weaker since the gravity is so low, but when they return back to Earth it becomes a problem. Our solution is to have a trampoline in the spacecraft. We chose this solution because during our research we found out that astronauts get weaker due to the lack of exercise in space. Having a trampoline in space will help provide additional exercise to the astronauts workout routine. Our prototype is a mini trampoline that will be attached to the spacecraft with bungee cords to provide tension while jumping and a harness for support so that the astronauts don’t float away. Our resources included the following websites: https://www.space.com/23017-weightlessness.html, https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/what-works-and-why/201803/why-exercise-is-so-essential-mental-health, https://www.wired.com/2009/04/astromuscles2/, and https://science.howstuffworks.com/exercise-in-space2.htm.
FLL Team 33303 The Pittsburgh Purploids
Hello, the new FLL year is coming to a close. Our team is The Pittsburgh Purploids 33303. We have seven people on our team. Grace, 7th grade, Jefferson Middle School, Renuk 7th grade, Marshall Middle School, Dinuk 7th Marshall Middle School, Loudy, 7th grade, Colfax School, Natalie, 7th grade, CAPA School for the Arts, Elise, 8th grade, Obama Academy, and Maeve, 6th grade, Winchester Thurston. This year’s theme is Into Orbit. Our problem is that a lot of astronauts get homesick in space. Our Solution is Communication!! We chose communication because that is a problem when a family member goes up into space. Our Prototype is a greeting card that has a voice memo in the inside. We are making one for every holiday or celebration. We would send the cards with the astronaut when they go up into space. The only problem with our solution is that it would be up to the astronaut to space out the opening of the cards. We found out that when one of our teammates lost one of her parents, she said it was best hearing her voice, and that’s why we chose to do a card that we could record a voice memo into it instead of card that was just a normal card. Our resources included the following websites: http://www.bbc.com/future/story/20130813-how-to-combat-loneliness-in-space, https://medium.com/@adammann930/how-will-we-deal-with-the-psychological-problems-of-spaceflight-e191196006df, https://www.nbcnews.com/mach/science/going-mars-will-involve-all-sorts-risks-going-bonkers-might-ncna895261, and https://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/astronaut-scott-kelly-on-the-devastating-effects-of-a-year-in-space-20170922-gyn9iw.html
Thank you for reading!
-Girls of Steel FLL teams