Send your idea into orbit with the Canadian Science Challenge!

Ever wondered how something would work without gravity in space? Turn your idea into the winning experiment astronaut Chris Hadfield will perform in orbit as part of the Canadian Science Challenge!

Canadian Astronaut, Chris Hadfield. Image courtesy of the Canadian Space Agency.

The Canadian Space Agency has issued the challenge to both school teams and individual students to design and submit an experiment by December 31, for Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield to perform as part of his six-month mission on the International Space Station. Chris will call the student or school team from space to discuss the winning experiment which will also be streamed live on the Internet to the whole world!

The only limit on the experiment is it has to use things that are already on board the Space Station like socks, dental floss, scissors, bottles of shampoo, water or even food like mustard. See everything that's available for experiments at the Space Agency's list of items for the Challenge. You can also get a better feel for what life is like in the weightlessness of the Space Station by watching these videos - International Space Station Tour and Food Aboard the International Space Station.

Everyone knows things behave differently in the zero gravity of space. So start imagining how something might work and put your question or idea to the test. To make sure you or your school’s idea is on track, check out the Challenge’s Rules and Eligibility.

The 10 best submissions from across Canada will be selected by a panel of astronauts and scientists. Videos of the top 10 finalists will then be posted on the Canadian Space Agency’s YouTube channel during the last two weeks of January. Canadians will be invited to vote for their favorite with the winner announced in February.

Careers in Space

Even though the space shuttle missions have stopped after 30 years, careers related to space are just as exciting as ever. Read about Canada’s contribution to NASA’s Curiosity robotic land rover which is currently searching Mars for signs that life may have existed there in the past..

Read CareerMash profiles that can lead to space careers through related fields like - Electronics Engineer, ElectronicsTechnician and Robotics Engineer.

Specific university programs related to space include York University’s Bachelor of Space Science program. York also offers a Bachelor of Space Engineering with an option for supervised work terms in the space or communications industry. York’s professors have been directly involved with many Canadian and international space missions.

The University of Toronto has an Institute of Aerospace Studies within its Faculty of Science and Applied Engineering. Programs include robotics, space systems design and spacecraft dynamics and control.

To get you in the mood for “space,” watch the video below of astronaut Chris Hadfield explaining how he is training for his upcoming mission to the Space Station.

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