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Do you want to call Andre in space
by Staff Writers
Paris, France (ESA) Jun 29, 2011

Dutch ESA astronaut Andre Kuipers. Credits: ESA.

Are you a science centre, a science museum, a planetarium or a science festival, engaging the public on science and space? Then ESA is offering you a rare opportunity to call Europe's next astronaut, Andre Kuipers, on the International Space Station.

From the end of November, ESA astronaut Andre Kuipers will live and work aboard the Space Station for almost six months. His diary is already filled with science experiments and running the Station as a flight engineer, but he will also have time for educational and public events.

ESA is now offering the opportunity for European public science education organisations to host exclusive 20-minute video calls to Andre in space.

The calls involve two different educational projects: 'Mission-X 2012' will be held in February, while 'Take Your Classroom into Space' is planned for the end of April 2012. Both events are aimed at European children aged 8-14.

Mission-X 2012
Mission-X 2012 will focus on the importance of regular exercise and healthy nutrition. During the call, students will have a chance to ask Andre questions about life as an astronaut and living on the Space Station.

Children are expected to exercise just like astronauts do in training and perform experiments on food to understand nutrition.

'Mission-X: Train Like an Astronaut' was a part of Paolo Nespoli's mission, which ended in May, and it involved hundreds of students all over Europe. The main event was held at the European Astronaut Centre in Cologne, Germany.

Classroom in space
For the Take Your Classroom into Space event, two experiments will be distributed for thousands of schools throughout Europe to carry them out at the same time as Andre on the Station. Pupils will have the opportunity to compare their results with Andre's.

The experiments will investigate the important role of gravity in convection and foam formation.

Paolo's 'Classroom in Space' experiment centred on a greenhouse: hundreds of small greenhouses were used by thousands of children to follow the growth of Arabidopsis plants

Watch the main event of this project here.


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