Mission Possible

For more than three years now, STM students, faculty, staff and parents have been anxiously focused on the school’s participation in an effort to become the first elementary school “in the world” to develop, build and test a cube satellite suitable for launching to the International Space Station (ISS) as part of a NASA sponsored science and engineering program designed to involve educational institutions and their students in actual, real world space exploration and missions.

In February 6, 2014 St. Thomas More Cathedral School (STM) was among 16 institutions and laboratories to have their cube satellite concepts approved for potential deployment into outer space. Among the other notable institutions to join STM on that highly selective list were the likes of MIT, UCLA, the University of Michigan and Marquette University.

Following its selection, STM and its entire student body went into high gear in constructing its cube satellite, getting it tested and preparing it for delivery and further testing by NASA. Approval for launching was obtained in 2014, and an initial launch date was scheduled for later that year. Problems with rocket launches in September 2014 and early 2015 resulted in several postponements of STM’s tentative launch dates.

But it now appears to be time to actually “fasten your seatbelts everyone!!!”

STM’s cube satellite is now scheduled for launching on December 3, 2015, along with other supplies and experiments intended for delivery to the ISS, on top of an Atlas rocket set to take off out of the Kennedy Space Center at Cape Canaveral, Florida.

All systems appear to be “GO”, and if no further delays occur, STM is set to finally become the “first elementary school in the world”, to place a satellite into low earth orbit in outer space (albeit with NASA’s help, of course). Our cube satellite’s intended purpose is to photograph low altitude asteroids hurtling into earth’s atmosphere before burning up in our atmosphere.

So prepare to put on your best STM pride on big display and keep your antennae up for further developments as December approaches.

In the world of education, this could just be as big as SPUTNIK!!!!

"Godspeed STMSat-1"