Masters of Space Studies 2018-2019

Inspire Space partially funded two Irish participants, Sarah Halpin and Eoin Tuohy, to take part in the International Space University (ISU) Masters of Space Studies (MSS) 2018/2019

The story so far: The first semester of the MSS!

Rocket competition - the red rocket is Sarah Halpin's!
Designing a satellite workshiop
Irish participants part of team that won the poster competition during the MSS
Intercultrual night with Ireland

Eoin Tuohy:

We hit the ground running in ISU. After an initial week of French lessons and getting to know the city of Strasbourg, we started our classes. Our class of 40 has people from all over the world with many different backgrounds; engineers, lawyers, scientists, doctors…the list goes on. It’s a great mix and I see how the ISU works on its 3 I’s: Interdisciplinary, Intercultural and International.

Within our first two weeks, we had already designed, built, and launched a rocket. It was a great project and something I had never done before. The following two months saw us go on a remote sensing field trip, do workshops with CubeSats and ICEcubes, design posters on planets, and preparing for our 1st exam. It is go go go and I can’t wait to start module 2.

Update August 2019: 

As part of my ISU Master’s course, I am currently doing a six month internship placement in the European Astronaut Centre in Cologne, Germany. The European Astronaut Centre (EAC) is the home to Europe’s Astronauts and provides the astronauts training, support, and partakes in a wide range of research.

I am part of the Spaceship EAC team. Spaceship EAC is tackling topics in modern human and robotic space exploration. The team aims to develop innovative designs to overcome problems related to future space missions and specifically works on low technology readiness level (TRL) projects preparing for human lunar exploration.

I am working on in-situ resource utilisation (IRSU) which is looking at using the soil on the Moon (lunar regolith) to help develop a lunar village. I am working on studying lunar regolith simulants and exploring their possible applications. As well as this, I am also looking into new technologies to help mitigate the problem of lunar dust, which sticks to everything and is incredibly abrasive. Preventing it from sticking to space suits would allow astronauts to do more spacewalks.

Working at EAC is an excellent experience and I get to meet fascinating people every day who are all working on the forefront of human space exploration!


Sarah Halpin:

We have just started module 2. Module 1, while intense, laid a brilliant foundation for a broad variety of space relevant topics, allowing us to now look at the Space sector in a more developed manner. Selection is well underway for our Individual projects and team projects. These would be similar to what people may experienced in thesis writing in other master’s programmes.As the core foundation of the MSS year is the 3I’s (interdisciplinary, Intercultural & International) we are afforded the opportunity to develop our skill base on both an individual and team oriented level. This is obviously a hugely benefical skill to have in the work place (no man is an island!).
One aspect of modern day employment that is widely overlooked is the need and ability to work with colleagues from multiple countries and cultures. ISU has made phenomenal effort to support students in developing an intercutural awareness. This includes offering lectures on the subject and multiple intercultural nights throughout the year giving us all the opportunity to celebrate and share aspects of our own cultures with our new friends and colleagues. FYI you haven’t tasted guacamole until you have tasted Mexican Guacamole. I couldn’t have imagined all I have learnt and experienced thus far and its only been 9 weeks! Can’t wait to see what the rest of the year brings.
 Information on the poster competition can be found here.

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