San Jose students lose experiments in SpaceX explosion

ByKatie Utehs KGO logo
Sunday, June 28, 2015
SpaceX rocket was full of experiments by San Jose students
The SpaceX rocket that exploded on Sunday rocket was full of experiments supplies from San Jose students.

SAN JOSE (KGO) -- There was a setback for SpaceX and NASA Sunday when a capsule headed for the space station exploded shortly after liftoff. The capsule was a design SpaceX hoped to someday use to transport people. NASA lost about 5,200 pounds of cargo. Some of that cargo included experiments created by students in the South Bay.

All looked well at 7:21 a.m. PT Sunday as a SpaceX rocket launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida towards the International Space Station. But then, two minutes in the rocket exploded and with it 17 experiments by students from Valley Christian High School and Junior High School in San Jose. From testing how plants grow in space to experimenting with metals to protect electronics from radiation.

Some 70 students at Valley Christian schools brainstorm ideas.

Bay Area students' designs to be 3D printed in space

"Then we gauge the ideas on how useful they'd be to the public to people who can actually use them," said Nadir," said Andy Nadir, Valley Christian High School, San Jose.

And those experiments are launched on rockets to ISS.

"It's real life experience. It's not in the classroom. It was conducted like a real business," said Nadir.

In the next few weeks they'll find out if another launch will take place.

"Just because our hardware was lost doesn't mean what we learned was lost. We learned to work as a team and we learned to build these experiments all that knowledge is still with us we can use that knowledge in our futures and our careers as we go on," said Rahul Tewari, International Space Station Program.

Because rocket science, while advanced, is still itself an experiment.