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  • B Madjaros

Science Giants Fly into KTS

Updated: Jun 14

Recently three large, innovative companies came together to wow students at staff at our favourite Baldock Comprehensive. B Madjoras reports

Aerospace is quite a broad term. Essentially, anything that flies or is in space falls under it. Since this means a lot of things, many students are interested in jobs to do with it. Exhibitors showed us Spot the robot dog from Boston Dynamics, the Airlander 10 from Hybrid Air Vehicles and Meta quest 3 headsets from Meta.

Jet planes are terrible right? Polluting the environment, super expensive, the list goes on and on. Well, Hybrid Air Vehicles have developed a plane called the Airlander 10. The Airlander is more like a blimp than anything, but a lot safer. It doesn't use hydrogen but helium which doesn’t explode - which is reassuring. They are slower than planes at only 130 mph but that would make them cheaper. It is even eco-friendly with no carbon emissions!

However, they don’t plan to stop just there. They will design a few more versions. One is a luxury class with only 13 passengers. They have bedrooms, better windows and even a bar! The blimp can stay in the air for five days at a time and they have big plans. Imagine, you are on the Airlander, you wake up and you look out of your glass wall to see the North Pole! They are planning to do scenic trips above many places. They are also developing a version for cargo and another one for the military.

We also saw Spot the Robot Dog, made by Boston Dynamics. It is a robot mimicking a dog in looks and has a built in speech function. You talk to it (saying Spot or it won’t work), and it then responds! It uses ChatGPT-4 to talk and isn’t the brightest apple, but it is one of the best! You can search for Boston Dynamics on Youtube and see videos of it dancing. However, it will be a while before you can buy one as it costs a whopping £120k! 

But that was just one of things we learnt about. Another is about VR! We all got to try Meta Quest 3 headsets, and be fully immersed in a plane flying tutorial. We also watched Leo Powell teach us how to use a VR app which makes any 3D object you want to, and then use the power of 3D printing to make it in real life so you can hold it. We even got to try drone flying tutorials on a huge screen with Airborne’s latest drone which gets to 300 mph!

Overall, it was very interesting and we learnt a lot! Aerospace is an amazing career choice and there are many areas for all from engineering to marketing to drone testing to even being an astronaut! It truly shows that somewhere, in the world there is always something perfect for you!

Photos: F Roper, Airlander


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