UK students invited to design a meal fit for an astronaut
2 May 2014 – The UK Space Agency is today (2 May 2014) launching a competition for school children between the ages of 7 and 14 to design a British-inspired, balanced and exciting meal for British ESA astronaut Tim Peake to eat during his 6-month mission to the International Space Station (ISS).
The winning contestants will be invited to develop their ideas further with celebrity chef Heston Blumenthal, and these ideas will be turned into real space food that will be launched to the ISS. They will also be invited to an event that will include a live link up with Tim during his stay on the ISS.
Tim said: “This is a great opportunity to get people thinking about nutrition and healthy eating. I’m really excited that I’ll be able to eat a ‘Great British Space Dinner’ onboard the space station and for me it will be a very special link back to planet Earth!
“I think that by blending the creativity from the competition and Heston’s expertise we can produce something that is not just fun, healthy and tasty but also food that will be really important for the future of space travel.”
The competition is supported by a set of education resources to support learning, using the context of space to explain nutrition and the importance of good diet.
Heston said: “I’m unbelievably excited to be designing a delicious meal for Tim to enjoy in space; there are some real challenges ahead, things aren’t quite the same up there! I’m really looking forward to seeing some incredible suggestions by the kids, and getting started on creating something that Tim will love up there in space.”
The challenge is open to classes, other groups (such as after-school clubs, Scouts, Guides, etc) and individuals. There are two categories, one for primary level children and one for secondary level children, with one winner in each category.
Children will need to design a British-inspired meal for Tim to eat in space, taking account of normal nutritional principles as well as the constraints of space (such as handling, packaging and preservation).
Entries must be submitted by 12pm on 30 June 2014 to the UK Space Agency via firstname.lastname@example.org.
Entries must include an ingredients list, the recipe and a photograph of the meal. Videos may also be used and links should be provided in the written submission.
Educational resources for teachers of key stages 2 and 3 (and equivalent) have been developed by the British Nutrition Foundation and are available at www.nationalstemcentre.org.uk/spacedinners (free registration required). There are also educational resources linked to the Tim Peake mission for all key stages, available on the ESERO-UK website.
A team of judges, which will include Tim Peake, Heston Blumenthal and experts from the British Nutritional Foundation, will select the best entries from both the primary and secondary school age categories. They will be looking for fun and healthy menus that excite Tim, have an element of Britishness, and have the potential to be transformed into a space dinner that could be flown to the ISS.