Milky Way Trailblazers

Mission: Galactic Cartography

2-week Residential Camp
Ages: 14-17
When: July 16-27, 2023
Cost: $3,960


At space camp, you will…

  • Investigate the composition & motion of our galaxy with giant radio telescopes
  • Create images with radio data to plot a path through the Milky Way for future explorers
  • Collaborate with fellow cartographers to complete your trailblazing mission
  • Conduct individual research on techniques used to communicate with space mission
    – Propose your own communication techniques for future missions!
  • Build a rocket, blast it off, observe, learn, repeat. Engage in team competitions for the highest, most powerful rockets with the biggest boom
  • How do you move when you have no fuel? You build a mass driver!
    – Team investigations to explore variables that impact accuracy, force, and destructive power of projectiles
  • Design and test safe landing crafts for future space missions

Tentative Schedule:

Sunday, July 14th

  • Campers arrive at PARI
  • Orientation, safety, house sorting, and ice breakers

Monday, July 15th

  • Satellites and spacecraft systems
  • Research basics and standards
  • Satellite and spacecraft research topic selection
  • Scavenger hunt and PARI ball

Tuesday, July 16th

  • Spectroscopy, invisible space rainbows, & distant universes
  • Galactic astronomy & anatomy of a galaxy
  • Marshmallow astronaut drop
  • PARI ball
  • Independent research

Wednesday, July 17th

  • Hiking on the Blue Ridge Parkway
  • Tubing down the river
  • Individual research (satellite and spacecraft)
  • Game night

Thursday, July 18th

  • Celestial coordinates and planetarium show
  • Individual research presentations (set 1)
  • Radio Astronomy/Radio Telescope training
  • PARI Ball
  • Research time
  • Telescope observing (condition dependent)

Friday, July 19th

  • More on radio telescopes (spectrographic analysis, continuum analysis, doppler shift)
  • Individual research presentations (set 2)
  • Training on tools you will need to map the Milky Way (image synthesis & astronomical software)
  • Group research (Mapping the Milky Way Galaxy)
  • Campfire

Saturday, July 20th

  • Meteorites
  • Group research (Mapping the Milky Way Galaxy)
  • Individual research presentations (set 3)
  • PARI Ball Tournament

Sunday, July 21st

  • Guest Speaker
  • Group research (Mapping the Milky Way Galaxy)
  • Individual research presentations (set 4)
  • Rocketry Challenges

Monday, July 22nd

  • Clemson Field Trip
  • Waterfall & hike
  • Free time/ game room

Tuesday, July 23rd

  • Guest speaker
  • Group research (Mapping the Milky Way Galaxy)
  • Individual research presentations (set 5)
  • Trivia Night

Wednesday, July 24th

  • Guest speaker
  • Group research (Mapping the Milky Way Galaxy)
  • Design and make your own spacey t-shirt
  • Scavenger Hunt Finals

Thursday, July 25th

  • Guest speaker
  • Group research (Mapping the Milky Way Galaxy)
  • Final preparations for group presentations
  • Space drama night

Friday, July 26th

  • Group presentations (Present your maps of the Milky Way and explain your findings!)
  • Celebration
  • Campfire

Saturday, July 27th

  • Departure