ESA Online Workshop – Code your mission to Mars: from simulation to reality
Wednesday 23 March 2022, 15:30 to 17:30
Primary & Post Primary Level

By using challenges and a game-based learning approach, the activities aim at developing  pupils’ problem solving and critical thinking skills, and at reinforcing their subject knowledge in science and programming.

In 2022 the first European rover will be launched for its journey to explore the surface of planet Mars and search for traces of past life. In this training, you will be introduced to the secrets of a mission to the Red Planet. How do scientists operate a planetary exploration vehicle on planet Mars? What are the challenges that programmers must overcome for a successful mission?

You will use satellite images of the Martian surface to analyse its characteristics and select a landing site for your rover. Then, you will program a number of missions, using the Open Roberta Lab online simulation tool. The tool utilises a block-based programming language and supports connectivity to a wide variety of educational robotic kits.

Mars is more than 50 million km away from us, which means that a communication signal will need more than 2,5 minutes to reach its destination! You will experience a similar situation, as your code will be uploaded on an educational robot in our e-technology lab, in the ESA/ESEC facilities, to actually drive on the Martian Terrain simulation table.

Closing of applications: 

  • on 16 March (midday, 12:00 CET) . 11.00am Irish time. Apply here.