After School Program
Touch Space is our premier year round program which incorporates all our José M. Hernández Reaching for the Stars Foundation education outreach and Tierra Luna Engineering, LLC university research programs, into one comprehensive ever-expanding vision to improve the quality of life among the under served and under represented population by allowing them the resources to design, construct, launch and share results using systems engineering processes.
The Touch Space Program partnership is committed to bringing space science STEM related projects to the under served and under represented students of San Joaquin Valley, California.
Phase One of the Touch Space program will allow students the opportunity of constructing and launching small “satellites” (PongSats, MiniCubes and CanSats) to the edge of space via high altitude balloons in order to collect environmental data and to understand the effects of a space environment. To accomplish this task, students will experience firsthand the importance of taking precise scientific measurements while introducing them to the system engineering processes related to space flight. By establishing an industry-university-school district pipeline, students will discover and experience the development of a satellite related subsystem while working in collaborative environments; preparing them for the complexity of space systems, while encouraging the establishment of a diverse workforce our Nation strives to achieve.
Phase Two of the Touch Space program takes analog satellite construction and testing to the next level. University and college students will not only participate in the program as mentors, but will also be required to develop and integrate the more complex subcomponents in preparation for construction and launching small satellites called CubeSats. These 10cm x 10cm x 10cm (also termed a 1 unit (1U) design) nanosatellites, weighing less than 10 kilograms and only orbiting the earth from one to nine months, collect and transmit data back to a university designed ground station, allowing students to participate in authentic research. All these learning experiences will then be passed down to younger students by the university mentors leading small satellite related activities at Science Blast. Mentors, STEM Academy and school district teachers will all receive professional development based on small satellite and systems engineering development.