DroPS - Pupil's experiments under weightlessness
The drop tower project for school students
You don't need to go to space for an experiment under microgravity! School students of secondary schools have the unique opportunity to fly their own experiment in the drop tower of Bremen. The Center of Applied Space Technology and Microgravity (ZARM) offers the Drop Tower Project for School Students (DroPS).
The DroPS programme was initiated by ZARM in 2014 and allows pupils from secondary schools to carry out scientific and technological experiments under microgravity in the ZARM drop tower. This is done in cooperation with the DLR_School_Lab and Hackerspace Bremen e.V. The DroPS project has an important impact on the pupil`s assessment by the schools, especially in the STEM subjects. It is also accepted in the Jugend forscht programme. Every year in autumn this programme opens a call for proposals.
A good idea...
is enough to be chosen for DroPS. When your experiment is convincing, then you will be supported by ZARM, the DLR_School_Lab Team and Hackerspace Bremen e.V.
Use your creativity and researcher spirit and develop an experiment that can operate for 4.7 seconds under zero gravity. Show us what inspired you to develop your experiment. Maybe it is an experiment which was conducted on the ISS and you want to reproduce it? Then it's time for getting started!
During a period of six months (January-June), you will be supported by engineers and scientists of ZARM and the DLR_School_Lab. The assembly of the experiment will take place mainly in your school, school workshop, at home etc. In addition, technical support by Hackerspace Bremen e.V can be offered.
At several review-meetings your progress and assembly are examined by our experts and practical assistance will be given. During the assembly phase, your experiment will be tested in the Space Tower of the DLR_School_Lab which provides nearly one second of free-fall time. This facilitates correct operation of your experiment apparatus at the final drop in the ZARM drop tower. Besides of this, you will already gather important data for the final evaluation of your experiment.
Calls for proposals open usually at the end of October.
Please send us your application between end of October and the end of November to:
Note that you need to explain to us how your experiment can be realized (i) technically and (ii) what is the scientific background. Please also add meaningful sketches (perhaps pictures of precursor experiments). Keep all this in mind because only with these informations we will be able to assess whether your proposal is realizable.
By the way - it is possible to impute this work as fifth exam element! In addition to that, you can continue to use your experiment and data for Jugend forscht.