Space Raiders

This past March, the Space Raiders purchased a 9.25” refractor telescope with a computer-controlled motorized “go-to” mount and camera adapter. Thanks to the generous donations from the Perloff Family Foundation, The Lucas Spencer Passion Fund, and Sally and Jim Gibson of Fryeburg, the purchase was possible. The telescope purchase helps to further our mission for viewing and astrophotography of the planets, stars, galaxies, nebula, and comets. We will be having open viewing events on campus and at the OLRC barn as weather and schedules permit.

Fryeburg Academy’s Space Raiders Club was founded in 2018 by physics teacher Dr. Warren Ziegler for astronomy and space science students. Dr. Ziegler is currently engaged as a Space Scientist with the University of Southern Maine and continues to mentor students from Fryeburg Academy’s Space Raiders Club. He is now working with Mr. Tyler O’Keefe ’14 who has joined as a faculty co-advisor. Despite the pandemic, the Space Raiders have many successful activities and events to report. The Space Raiders contributed to a successful NASA CubeSat Launch Initiative (CSLI) proposal to have a Maine-built satellite launched into orbit by NASA (MESAT-1). The Raiders contributed sections on remote sensing, telemetry, and attitude control to the overall proposal. A small satellite launch is worth as much as $100,000, so this is a significant award. The Space Raiders will have an experiment included in MESAT-1, which will carry cameras that will image the earth in different colors. By doing so, it will be able to assess the state of the waters around Maine. For example, the ratio of reflected green light from the water surface to reflected infra-red light indicates the presence of plankton and the number of solids (turbidity) in the water. MESAT-1 is scheduled to be launched into a polar orbit in April of 2022.

The Space Raiders have proceeded to the next phase of the University of Southern Maine’s CubeSat Competition. Schools from throughout the State of Maine were invited to submit designs for a satellite launched on a high-altitude balloon capable of reaching an altitude of 20 miles or more. The balloon will be launched in late June 2021. The Space Raiders entry in the competition will be used to map the estuaries at the Wells National Research Reserve using cameras controlled by a computer. The Space Raiders are working with Dr. Jason Goldstein, the lead scientist at Wells, to create a baseline map of the salt pools within the estuary. It is hypothesized that the size and number of salt pools within the estuary may change as the climate changes. Mapping the current salt pools will provide a reference point in time to be compared to future mapping efforts.

This past November, Space Raider’s member Andrii Obertas created a unique Venus Rover design that entered in a NASA challenge. The challenge was to design a rover that could maneuver around obstacles using mechanical sensors and minimal electronics as the high temperatures at Venus’s surface are detrimental to electronic components; Andrii’s design involved using a wheel at the end of an articulated boom connected to the rover body. This was an open competition for all ages. Andrii’s entry was very clever though it did not win overall, still a significant achievement given that he competed against professional engineers and scientists from around the world.
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List of 5 news stories.

  • Space Raiders

    This past March, the Space Raiders purchased a 9.25” refractor telescope with a computer-controlled motorized “go-to” mount and camera adapter. Thanks to the generous donations from the Perloff Family Foundation, The Lucas Spencer Passion Fund, and Sally and Jim Gibson of Fryeburg, the purchase was possible. The telescope purchase helps to further our mission for viewing and astrophotography of the planets, stars, galaxies, nebula, and comets. We will be having open viewing events on campus and at the OLRC barn as weather and schedules permit.
  • FA Students Join UM Buddy Defranco and MMEA Maine State Jazz Festivals 

    This January, Fryeburg Academy’s after-school jazz groups were able to resume limited rehearsals (following specific CDC guidelines for spacing, ventilation, masking, instrument covers, and rehearsal length), which allowed us to begin preparation for the spring virtual jazz festivals.
  • FA Students Win 2021 Biomimicry Youth Design Challenge

    FA's Biology Club, led by Jennifer Richardson, was selected as the winner for the 2020-21 Youth Design Challenge, winning the Problem Definition Award for their MorphoBrick concept.
  • FA Senior’s Photography Recognized by the Maine College of Art Alliance for Young Artists & Writers

    Senior Julian Zhu’s photography skills are known by many in our community, and his stellar work graces the Academy’s walls and marketing publications. This year, Zhu was awarded the Gold Key Award from Maine College of Arts’ Scholastic Art & Writing Awards for his submitted photo entitled, “Graduation 2020-Under COVID-19.” 
  • FA’s Technical Art Students Enhance the Gibson Recreation Center with Benches

    For technical arts teacher Bob Pulito, creating innovative schedules to procure enough hands-on class time for his students has been one of the biggest challenges this year. “I’ve had to downsize the project choices due to the uncertainty of lab time if we have to work remotely,” says Pulito. “I’m still looking at two major wood projects from last year that need to be completed. Fortunately, the students have readily adapted and are more than happy to create [smaller-scale projects] for the school community.”

Fryeburg Academy

FRYEBURG ACADEMY
745 Main Street
Fryeburg, ME 04037
p. (207) 935-2001      
f.  (207) 935-5013      
admissions@fryeburgacademy.org
Fryeburg Academy is an independent boarding and day school, serving grades 9-12 and postgraduate. We invite you to explore our site and learn how students from around the globe find their place in the world through our exceptional academic, art, and athletic programs.