Home Borrisoleigh St. Josephs College Borrisoleigh CanSat Team with some Space Themed Vocabulary

St. Josephs College Borrisoleigh CanSat Team with some Space Themed Vocabulary


We here at St. Josephs College Borrisoleigh CanSat team want to inform you about space and teach you about space exploration. As members of the team we need to know a lot about space. We want to educate you, our community about different things in space and clear up any misconceptions.

Firstly, we’ll explain some terminology you maybe used to hearing but not fully understand.


We’ll begin first with satellites since that is what we are supposed to make for our project. A natural satellite is any body that orbits a planet. That makes the moon our natural satellite. Artificial satellites are objects placed into orbit around the earth or other bodies in space by humans.  Satellites are usually self-independent, robot-controlled or computer-controlled systems. The first artificial satellite was Sputnik 1 which was launched by the Soviet Union in 1957. Since then, thousands of satellites have been launched into orbit around the earth.

Satellites are used for collecting information, taking pictures, communications and to provide real time data such as GPS – Geostationary Positioning Satellite.

A meteor is a small rocky or metallic body travelling through space. Most are fragments from comets or asteroids, whereas others are collision impact debris ejected from bodies such as the Moon or Mars. A meteorite are the pieces of the meteor that survive the collision into our atmosphere and can land on earth.

A telescope is an instrument that aids in the observation of remote objects by collecting electromagnetic radiation (such as visible light). The first known practical telescopes were invented in the Netherlands at the beginning of the 17th century, using glass lenses. They found use in terrestrial applications and astronomy.

Within a few decades, the reflecting telescope was invented, which used mirrors. In the 20th century many new types of telescopes were invented, including radio telescopes in the 1930s and infrared telescopes in the 1960s. The word telescope now refers to a wide range of instruments detecting different regions of the electromagnetic spectrum, and in some cases other types of detectors.

The Solar System is the gravitationally bound system comprising the Sun and the objects that orbit it, either directly or indirectly. Of those objects that orbit the Sun directly, the largest eight are the planets, with the remainder being significantly smaller objects, such as dwarf planets and small Solar System bodies. Of the objects that orbit the Sun indirectly, the moons, two are larger than the smallest planet, Mercury.

And that’s a few of the space vocabulary that you might here on a daily basis explained!


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