Cosmic coding challenge for kids launches Raspberry Pi computers into space

Cosmic coding challenge for kids launches Raspberry Pi computers into space

Press release from: Raspberry Pi Foundation
Posted: Monday December 20th 2021

Two groundbreaking Raspberry Pi computers will launch from Cape Canaveral today aboard SpaceX 24 to allow children and teens to conduct their own experiments on the International Space Station (ISS).

the Astro Pi European Challenge: Mission Zero from the Raspberry Pi Foundation and the European Space Agency (ESA) inspires young people to discover and develop a love of coding and digital creativity with a truly “out of this world” experience.

He guides them step-by-step through coding a sensor check aboard the ISS and puts their creativity into action by designing digital artwork and writing a personal message for astronauts orbiting 408 km above Earth.

Young explorers don’t need any previous coding experience or specialized equipment, just a computer with an internet connection and their imagination. It is completely free to participate in up to March 18, 2022 and is suitable for children from the age of six.

Philippe Colligan, CEO, Raspberry Pi Foundation said: “The Astro Pi Challenge inspires kids to discover coding, explore digital creativity, and participate in an ‘out of this world’ learning opportunity by coding an experience on the International Space Station. We put the power of computing in the hands of children with one of the best educational opportunities out there”.

All eligible participant of an ESA member or associate country that follows the simple advice is guaranteed to have its experience, its message and its image executed on the ISS and will receive a certificate to mark when it is launched into orbit.

The new Raspberry Pi computers launched today replace older models – Ed and Izzy – that have been on the space station since 2015. Since then, 54,000 young people across Europe and Canada participated in the Astro Pi Challenge. Participants in this year’s challenge will also have the opportunity to name the new computers.

The Raspberry Pi Foundation is a UK-based charity working to put computing and digital creation into the hands of young people around the world. It aims to empower young people to harness the power of community and digital technology to solve problems that matter to them and to express themselves creatively.

In addition to Mission Zero, the Astro Pi Challenge Mission space laboratory is aimed at teams of young people who already have some coding experience. Teams are developing more detailed experiences in schools and coding clubs. Registration for this year’s Mission Space Lab is already closed. A record 800 teams from 23 countries participated in experiments such as monitoring forest health, plant erosion, forest fires and climate change – 49% using machine learning. The most promising teams will be supported to advance their ideas, before the best experiments take place on the ISS.

To learn more about the Astro Pi Challenge and participate in Mission Zero today, go to

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