The University of York’s Astronomy Society have created a YuStart campaign to raise money to send their mascot, a rubber duck named AstroDuck, into space.
The duck will be launched using a weather balloon and accompanied by a black box so that information about altitude, temperature, air pressure and magnetic fields can be collected.
It is hoped that this data, along with footage obtained using a GoPro camera that will be built into the weather balloon, will allow Astronomy Society to conduct a thorough analysis of the rubber duck’s flight. A parachute will be used to return it to Earth.
The society need to raise a minimum of £540 to buy the equipment needed for the launch. They have currently raised £520.
If fundraising targets are met, it will take place during Science Week in November. However, the YuStart page suggested that “further launches” were a possibility in the future.
Astronomy Society are offering rewards for supporters of their project. These include advertising, depending on how much they donate.
Cameron Spence, Chair of Astronomy Society, told Nouse: “The University of York is home to hundreds of great societies, and we at the Astronomy Society are doing our part to maintain that reputation.
“We have an action-packed year ahead of us, with our planned event to launch our mascot AstroDuck into space being one of the most exciting.
“This perilous adventure would not be possible without the help of our kind sponsors, so a huge thank you to everyone who has donated money towards AstroDuck’s maiden voyage. We’ll see you all on the launch pad!”