Intergalactic super judges join SpaceApps @mLab





With the International Space Apps Challenge approaching we had a challenge of our own. Who on earth would be worthy to judge your awesome #SpaceApps solutions?

So after searching the known galaxy (ok so only as far as our e-tag budgets would take us for the month) we found our intergalactic-super-hero-gravity-defying-planet-exploring judges for the #SpaceApps challenge on 11 & 12 April.

*drum roll!!*

The Astronaut – Judge #1:

MandlaMandla Maseko is a 25 year old future generation Astronaut, credit to winning the Axe Apollo Space Academy competition that is under the SXC (Space Expedition Corporation).

His dream is to do Aeronautical Engineering and qualify as a Mission Specialist. He aspires to be the first African to walk on the Moon and hopefully put the South African flag there. And in the process of doing all of that, he wants to inspire and motivate the youth of South Africa and the rest of the continent, and discover other young aspiring future astronauts.

Axe Apollo Space Academy® has revealed the final crew from around the world that will launch into space, and we are proud to announce that Mandla Maseko from South Africa has been selected among the Next Generation of Space Explorers.

After receiving one million submissions from hopefuls across the globe, 107 brave guys and girls were selected from 60 countries to gather in Cape Canaveral, Florida for the final stage of the Axe Apollo Space Academy® to prove they have what it

takes to be an astronaut.

Under the stewardship of A.A.S.A. head and astronaut legend Buzz Aldrin, 23 extraordinary recruits, including Mandla, have been selected to complete the final crew that will journey into suborbital space.

While at the AXE Apollo Space Academy®, Mandla challenged his mental and physical limits during a series of missions that gave all recruits a taste of the thrills and trials faced by real astronauts. Among the series of training missions, Mandla mastered piloting an Air Combat USA® aircraft and braced himself for the strength of blast off in a G-Force Simulator at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex.

Mandla is among an international team of A.A.S.A space travelers. The A.A.S.A. team includes men and women representing countries around the globe, some of whom will make history as the first from their nations to go to space. Some of these history-making winners include the first Filipino, Thai and New Zealander to go to space. In total, the A.A.S.A. international team represents Canada, Brazil, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Netherlands, Spain, Slovakia, Russia, Turkey, Egypt, India, Japan, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, Australia, New Zealand, Norway, South Africa and China.

The Planetary Scientist – Judge #2:

ThroopDr. Henry Throop, PhD
Throop is a Senior Scientist with the Planetary Science Institute in Tucson, Arizona, USA, and a Senior Lecturer at the University of Pretoria. He received a PhD in Planetary Science from the University of Colorado, USA, in 2000.
His work focuses on the outer solar system, and he has published over 40 articles in scientific journals, on topics ranging from to rings of Saturn and Jupiter, to planet and star formation, to astrobiology and the origins of life, to searching for (and co-discovering) Pluto’s smallest moon, Styx, in 2012.
He is a frequent consultant to the US’s NASA and the National Science Foundation. While working at NASA, he was responsible for the oversight and management of two of the NASA’s major scientific research programs. Throop’s work has been featured in Science, Nature, Time, The Washington Post, and on the History Channel and National Geographic TV. He has been featured in the Times on Sunday and on SABC Morning Live.
Both Mandla and Henry will be welcoming participates at mLab in Pretoria on 11 April, so make sure you register to participate and learn a whole lot about our awesome planet and the universe.
Register for Pretoria & Cape Town