Student’s Space Science Experiment

Grade 11 students from Sekolah Pelita Harapan Lippo Village, Bennett J. Krisno, Gisella Austin and Marie Felicia Surya along with other students from SMAN 1 Sentani, SMA Advent Doyo Baru, Binus School Simprug, and SMA BPK Penabur 2 Serpong had the honor of having an experimental project with NASA.

The objective of their experiment is to grow rice in space. The students worked hard and prepared a micro lab for months so it could go through many tests like security, endurance and flight tests by NASA. They wanted to compare the growth of rice on earth and on space with the possibility of growing rice in near-zero gravity.

Bennett Krisno, team leader from Sekolah Pelita Harapan explained that they began this project in October 2015. The micro lab device designed by these students equipped with a large digital censor camera and micro controller, was put in the Cygnus Cargo Freighter on Atlas 5 Rocket which docked at the International Space Station (ISS) on Wednesday, March 23, 2016. This project is an autonomous experiment, so the students set the camera to take pictures four times a day and the pictures are sent back to earth every two days.

“Being the first Indonesian student team to send an experiment to space, we are faced with numerous difficulties for the first time. One difficulties were the technical aspect of this project. Also, the major challenge we faced was coordinating all the team members to finish this project on time. Since we came from different places and schools, three of us from Pelita Harapan, two from Jakarta, one from Bandung, and four from Papua.” he added.

Gisella Austin said, “I realize that Sekolah Pelita Harapan always encourages us to take up huge challenges. When I was in grade six we did our primary year program exhibition. I learn to manage my time, how to take criticism, and how to evaluate analytically so we are able to learn from our mistakes and create something we could all be proud of.”

Bennett also said, “Joining Sekolah Pelita Harapan in grade seven, I was quickly introduced to SPH’s culture. The teachers teach me how to balance work study, friendship and spiritual life. Sekolah Pelita Harapan has taught me to accept challenges even though they are difficult and help me to be a better person. You might succeed or fail during the process, but it doesn’t matter, what matters is how you deal with it.”

Sekolah Pelita Harapan is proud to see that our students are able to thrive and contribute to Indonesia’s scientific achievement. It is crucial to encourage future generation and give them the right foundations from the start.


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