International Software Developer Visits Fulneck

An American-based software developer has dropped into a Pudsey school to check on one of his “space age” inventions.

Fulneck School is the first educational establishment in the region to have installed “ISS-Above”, a computer programme and “light box” which monitors the progress of the International Space Station on its journey across the sky.

Created by Dr Liam Kennedy – one of the world’s foremost video and live streaming experts – his device provides the school with live alerts and updates on the International Space Station as it orbits the Earth.

The ISS-Above was a gift from Louis Lyell, a friend of Dr Kennedy to Fulneck School physics teacher Dr Caroline Neuberg, after she collaborated with him on an exchange of seismological data, as both Mr Lyell and the school own a TC1 seismometer.

In a single day, the ISS passes over the same area of the Earth between five and eight times, and is most visible at night when the solar panels on its body catch the sunlight.

The ISS-Above allows Fulneck School to find out when this happens and where to look in the sky.

The small box that the “ISS-Above” programme is enclosed in is giving Fulneck school teachers and pupils a wealth of information about the ISS and its scientific mission.

The programme box flashes when the space station is nearby and when it is directly above the school.

Besides providing immediate information on the ISS’ location, Fulneck pupils are also learning about who is on board the space station, what mission they are performing and what scientific experiments are being completed, as well as real time footage of the Earth from space.

Speaking about the new programme at the school, Dr Neuberg said: “We are delighted to have received the ISS-Above programme for our school and it was wonderful to welcome Dr Kennedy to Fulneck School.

““We had been listening to the murmurs of the Earth, using our seismometer and now we are paying attention to the whispers in the sky!

“It’s a fantastic addition to our school’s science department, and our pupils will doubtless learn a great deal about cutting-edge science and space, all due to the new programme.

“Students will now be able to find out about the radical new changes in science being conducted and tested aboard the International Space Station, some of which are submitted by students their age!

“During his visit, Dr Kennedy also met with Fulneck teaching assistant Claire Newman, as both share a passion for astronomy, and the pair spoke about their interest, both in the UK and the USA.

“ISS-Above is also available for the local community to view, as the monitor displaying the information can be viewed from the road by passing Fulneck residents.”

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