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Space Trek Academy

Space Trek Academy

Sponsored by the NASA Florida Space Grant Consortium

Hosted by Atlantis Educational Services

March 9-12, 2020 and March 16-19, 2020

Center for Space Education

Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex

The Atlantis Educational Services will be hosting two,  Four- day academies called the Space Trek Academy at the Center for Space Education (CSE), Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex (KSCVC). The first Academy will be held from March 9-12, 2020 and the second one from March 16-19, 2020. The Academy is sponsored wholly by the NASA Florida Space Grant Consortium. This Academy is open to all undergraduate and graduate students students enrolled in a university or college in Florida.

In this program, 16 college students will participate as one large team, with smaller technical units to successfully launch and retrieve a weather balloon, with a payload that travels up to 100,000 feet. 

After the balloon launch on March 12th and March 19th, there will be an award ceremony where every participant will be provided a certificate of completion.

Students will learn about subjects such as meteorology, telemetry and how NASA takes different variables into account to perform missions, very similar to these. They will also learn about payload integration and how to plan and efficiently carry out a weather balloon launch.

The flight computer will be designed to interact with 3 PODS (portable experiment computers) that can be programmed to connect with up to 10 sensors each. 

Preparation will begin with the selection of 16 students for the program. Discussions on possible experiments, hardware & program will take place before coming to CSE, with the help of Space Trek instructors through 2 Skype Sessions. 

Over a period of 3 days, the group will aim to integrate and launch their experiments to make observations in the upper atmosphere and throughout the flight of the weather balloon

Participants will work on independent teams with students assigned to different positions similar to those used by NASA, including Flight Director, Safety Officer, Payload Integration, Launch Operations, and Meteorology. Instructors will train students to perform their tasks and then assist in operations as the students take lead. Emphasis is on communication among various teams and to follow their roles to achieve a successful launch and recovery.

Students will develop a payload to be sent on the weather balloon conducting experiments and gather results as it ascends and descends through the atmosphere.

Flight Computer will have:

Pods can accept 5 I2C sensors (of the same kind or different), 4 digital and 4 analog sensors.

Participants will also learn how to test equipment, use checklists, and prepare all the components for the final launch. The main piece of hardware is the flight computer, which has the capability to record variables such as humidity, pressure, temperature, velocity, and altitude.

As the balloon travels through the atmosphere, the flight data will be constantly transmitted to our facility at KSCVC where students can watch a live feed on a map of the balloon flight. Alongside this data students can correlate the behavior of their experiment to draw possible conclusions.


Application & Selection Process:


                                                     Space Trek Academy Form


                     First Space Trek Academy (March 9 – 12, 2019)

                                First Skype Session: January 14, 2019 from 11am to 12:30pm EST

                                Second Skype Session: Feburary 19, 2019 from 11am to 12:30pm EST

                     Second Space Trek Academy (March 16 – 19, 2019)

                               First Skype Session: January 15, 2019 from 11am to 12:30pm EST

                               Second Skype Session: Feburary 20, 2019 from 11am to 12:30pm EST

                                 First Academy: March 9 at 9am

                                 Second Academy: March 16 at 9am


If you have any questions on the application process, please email Abhishek Agarwal ( and Michael Hull (


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