F7 Mission Starlight 

As part of F7's study of the properties of light, they have been participating in a project set up by the Royal Society of Chemistry called Mission Starlight. The project aims to get pupils around the world thinking about the harmful effects of ultraviolet radiation and how we can protect ourselves by using our knowledge of the properties of materials. The context is a mission to protect astronauts from UV light in space, where they are at higher risk, because they are outside the Earth's protective atmosphere. We were especially interested in the project after hearing from Dr Jim Reilly, who spoke about this danger on his last visit.

Using UV sensitive beads, we investigated materials, plastics and liquids for UV protective qualities and then used our findings to design either a space suit or a space shuttle. We found that kitchen foil, black tea and red cellophane provided good protection from ultraviolet radiation. All participants gained a certificate from the RSC for their hard work.

Mission Starlight 1ai

Mission Starlight 1aii

Mission Starlight 1aiii

Mwara Stuart, 27/05/2016

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