Joseph Banks SC in the Press!

Have you ever dreamt of being an astronaut or working in Mission Control?

Students across Western Australia will soon have access to a new purpose-built facility for such adventures.

The Space Science Education Centre will open at Joseph Banks Secondary College in Banksia Grove in mid-2023 .

Joseph Banks Secondary College Associate Principal Liz Smith said the centre would focus on science, technology, engineering and mathematics learning, as well as space sciences.

“The centre will provide students with a simulated Mars or lunar surface, facilities to perform space science experiments and technology for a Mission Control experience,” she said.

Staff at the college have already introduced space science courses for current students in years 9 and 10.

“Students are currently taking courses like Our Curious Cosmos, which delves into the cosmos, explores what stars are made of through spectroscopy and modern astrophysics,” Ms Smith said.

“They are also studying Communication in Space, which unpacks the links between space, robotics, artificial intelligence, automation and remote operations, while the Solar Systems and Satellites course investigates technology developments, ethics in space and space junk.”

From next year, when the Space Science Education Centre opens, many more students across WA will be able to benefit from the specialist space facilities.

Students and teachers will have access to the facility and programs, including remote and regional schools, which can access them virtually.

Outreach and community education opportunities will also be available, creating links to the space science industry.

To support pathways for students in building skills in remote operations on Earth and in space, Joseph Banks Secondary College has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Australian Remote Operations for Space and Earth consortium.

The Space Science Education Centre has $16 million in funding through the State Government’s WA Recovery Plan.

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