Cyprus prepares for NASA competition after receiving international prizes

After winning first and second prizes from NASA, Cypriot teams will participate again, for the fifth consecutive year, in the NASA SpaceApps Challenge 2017, which brings together people of diverse scientific backgrounds, in order to address engineering issues through specific challenges. The NASA Space Apps Challenge is the biggest event for the development of innovative and space oriented ideas.

Space Apps is an international hackathon that occurs over 48 hours in cities around the world. Coders, scientists, designers, storytellers, makers, builders, technologists, and everyone enthusiastic about space come together to address challenges we face on Earth and in space.

The event takes place in many cities around the world. In Cyprus, it will be held in the coastal town of Limassol the weekend 29-30 of April, at the premises of the Cyprus University of Technology (CUT).

The NASA contest is very popular around the world, since it provides researchers with a great opportunity to get involved with real missions of NASA, which envisages to send the first humans to Mars in the 2030s and create a permanent colony in the red planet.

The applications created during the Space Apps competitions involve various fields such as planetary exploration, exploitation of resources from asteroids, environmental protection, warnings of weather phenomena, monitoring seismic activity and volcanic activity, etc.

This two-day competition is taking place in more than 130 cities around the world. The Cyprus competition is organized by the Cyprus Space Exploration Organisation CSEO and students of the CUT.

The winning teams of the competition will represent Cyprus at the International Space Apps Challenge.

Cypriot success stories

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In 2015 the Cypriot team ArachnoBeeA won the first international NASA Best Mission Concept Award for their project of the worlds first Zero G drone. ArachnoBeeA was selected by NASA’s evaluation committee as the global winner in the Best Mission Concept category, among over 950 participants from 135 cities.

Announcing the first prize to the Cypriot team, NASA said that , Arachnobeea from (Limassol, Cyprus) designed a spider-bee drone for small cargo transport with a grab and capture capability and the ability to dock and release.

ESA astronaut Paolo Nespoli has described ArachnoBeeAs project as an innovative and clever concept, saying that their drone has many possibilities and one day if it is sent to space, it would be of great use to the ISS astronauts.

Cypriot Minister of Transport, Communication and Works Marios Demetriades had said that the Cypriot Arachnobeea team, which won a NASA international award, confirms Cyprus presence on the space map.

In 2013 Cypriot project MarsSense, which was the winner of the Space Apps Limassol 2013, was given the second international award in the category Peoples Choice Award of the NASA International Space Apps Challenge. The Cypriot team of MarsSense was invited in 2014 to the biggest space conference, called Space Ops, which is organised by NASA. There, the Cypriot team presented its work and was excelled as one of the four leading academic projects related to Space Exploration for the biennium 2013-2014.

The Cyprus Telecommunications Authority, (Cyta), through its Innovation and Idea Development Centre, is the strategic partner of this years Limassol competition. CNA acts as official media sponsor of the event.

Source: Cyprus News Agency