Ravenswood and Knox have announced their involvement in the joint Russian-Australian school satellite research project.

Groups of schoolchildren from Ravenswood and Knox have been selected to work as the Australian team which will receive data from a micro-satellite to be launched from the Russian Space Station "MIR" or from the International Space Station - ISS.

Schoolchildren from both Schools will use video-conferencing and e-mail to work with Russian higher school students and schoolchildren from the Centre of Computer Technologies at The Institute of Atomic Power (Obninsk, 100km outside Moscow) and with the Space Research Institute (IKI) RAS. Schoolchildren from Ravenswood and Knox meet regularly and maintain dialogue within the project through e-mail. E-mail contact with Russian participants is proving to be valuable due to the exchange of ideas and information. One of many advantages both student groups gained, is the anticipated cultural exchange including visits between the two countries.

On July, 27, 2000 a group of Russian schoolchildren and adult specialists arrived on an eight-day visit to Australia. There the Russians commenced training of students at a ground-based station, so that they could receive, process and interpret information from the satellite. A transmitter/receiver station will be equipped at each School.

The unique feature of the project is that it allows students to make first steps in research in Solar-Earth physics at a sophisticated level. The project also considerably facilitates the opportunity for cooperation in academic research between students from two diverse nations. The school satellite will study the structure and intensity of low-frequency electromagmetic fields around the Earth. Students will also analyze data on the intensity of high-energy particles penetrating from the Sun to the Earth’s upper atmosphere and investigate anomalies over Australia.

The satellite will also enable students to monitor the Earth’s weather systems from space.