Starts Science Task Force at Tartu Observatory!

Katrina Kalnina | 1.07.2016

On July 4, 2016 at Tartu Observatory already for the fifth time starts Science Task Force “Teadusmalev” that is organized in cooperation with University of Tartu, Tartu Hansa and Tartu Toome Rotary Clubs.

Teadusmalev 2015 Mart Noorma ja noored

The aim of the “Teadusmalev” is to offer hands-on experience to school-age science enthusiasts by being acquainted with the profession of a scientist. Oppose to last summer, when all participants worked together as a research group and developed a Helmoltz cage to test magnetic properties of small satellites, this summer each participant will have individual task related to one of ESTCube-2 subsystems or research done at the observatory.

Tasks will be related for example to ESTCube-2 Attitude and Orbital Control Subsystem (AOCS) that is responsible for control of the attitude and position of a satellite, and Communication Subsystem that enables communication between satellite in orbit and ground station. The lead of AOCS Hendrik Ehrpais reviles that task of his new team members will be to develop magnetorques and test attitude determination sensors.

One astronomy enthusiast will get to analyse the brightness fluctuation of massive stars of comparably poorly researched star cluster NGC 7419 based on data collected from Tõravere. Additionally participants will get the chance to learn different observation methods using the observatory’s telescopes and take part in remote sensing field works.

This year the Youth Development Fund of the Tartu Hansa Rotary and the Tartu Toome Rotary Clubs has granted five fellowships to secondary school students for the participation in “Teadusmalev”. The Youth Development Fund of the clubs awards with the fellowship following candidates: Frida Laigu (Gustav Adolfi Grammar School), Daniil Lepkin (Tallinn Õismäe Russian Lyceum), Hanna Britt Soots (Tallinn Secondary School of Science), Knuth Helekivi (Tartu Mart Reiniku School), and Mathias Plans (Jaan Poska Gymnasium).
Considering the great motivation of other candidates the Tartu Observatory and Estonian Student Satellite Foundation decided to support also secondary school students Hartvig Tooming (Tallinn French Lyceum), Laima Anna Dalbiņa (Valmiera State Gymnasium, Latvia), and Vlad Karzubov (Tartu Annelinn Gymnasium). For one week, July 18-22 for a Science Camp everyone will join Annabel Talts (Hugo Treffner Gymnasium), Aksel Allas (Hugo Treffner Gymnasium), Kerli Tali (Hugo Treffner Gymnasium), Viktorija Leimane (Tukums 2. Secondary School, Latvia), and Renita Ämarik (Türi Basic School).

The Director of the Tartu Observatory Anu Reinart says that researchers at the observatory are positive towards their young summer colleagues: “We see that curios school children develop into smart and motivated successful young researchers. This year’s winner of the Estonian youth research competition Eva Maria Tõnson has participated in the Science Summer Camp and the “Teadusmalev” and will present her research in remote sensing field at the world’s largest international pre-college science competition Intel ISEF.“

The great challenge of the „Teadusmalev“2016 is participation in rapid development of the satellite ESTCube-2 since it shall be launched already on the 100-year anniversary of the Republic of Estonia.

More information: Katrina Kalnina, “Teadusmalev” Programme Coordinator,
                                  phone: 55574121; e-mail:

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