Noosphere’s 2021 Year in Review

29 Dec 2021

In 2021, we all learned to exist in new conditions. Despite the trials, we had a productive year: we held the long-awaited engineering startup competition finals, worked toward organizing archeological expeditions and model rocket events. We implemented a new format for sporting events, held a PR training, and kicked off a long-term art and charity event. For the fifth time, we were the regional face for the NASA Hackathon. And we dazzled at the 30th anniversary of Independence of Ukraine celebrations, setting a new rocket-model record!

Let’s look back at some of our favorite memories. To affirm that it is possible to be active, effective, and proactive in all situations.

PR 2.0

The first in-person event in 2021 was an open course from our experts in public relations.

During the week our team shared experiences on event and content management and SMM. We also discussed the specifics of working with journalists, contractors, and partners. The course covered a wide range of issues, from the theory of communication strategies to practical advice on organizing events and orders.

Our Noosphere PR experts prepared understandable and useful lectures for everyone from beginners in communications to those with some established experience.

The 5th final of the Vernadsky Challenge

In June, we held the long-awaited finals of the engineering startup competition Vernadsky Challenge. The fifth anniversary of the event was held in Kiev, as part of the international aerospace show “AVIASVIT-XXI”.

The winners were:

1st place — Medicsen from Spain. The Medicsen team created a smart patch for non-invasive medication administration

2nd place — Provizio, Ukraine. The team developed a device to measure intraocular pressure to help delay vision loss.

3rd place — BOROSPACE, Slovakia. A project for an innovative design of lithium-ion batteries that convert to hybrid rocket fuel after depletion.

More than just awarding new competition winners, the grand final featured lectures from previous years Vernadsky Challenge finalists, a panel discussion on the main components of successful startups, and an exhibition of children’s space drawings from the Noosphere Space Art Challenge.

Noosphere Space Art Challenge 2021

Speaking of Noosphere Space Art Challenge. This year the competition of young artists gathered a record number of drawings – almost 15,000!

Participants from 2,200 Ukrainian municipalities joined the Noosphere Space Art Challenge. The youngest of the artists was only 3 years old!

The theme of the contest in 2021 was an intentional nod: “30 Years of Space Independence”.

We can say that the Noosphere Space Art Challenge kicked off festive events on the 30th anniversary of Ukraine’s independence.

Noosphere BE-IN (Birthday Events Ukraine 30th Independence)

And in August, Noosphere planned full-scale in-person events continuing the celebrations for Independence Day.

The celebration began on August 22 at Kamenka Airport in the Dnipropetrovsk region. Our team, in cooperation with the Federation of Rocket Modeling Sports of Ukraine, organized an all-Ukrainian record, a mass launch of rocket models.

The environmentally friendly rockets, brightly colored yellow and blue, were prepared by rocket modelers from five regions of Ukraine.

At a set time, 447 rockets of the 500 prepared were successfully launched simultaneously in the Kamenka sky. The record was officially recorded by the National Records of Ukraine.

Noosphere BE-IN (Birthday Events Ukraine 30th Independence) festivities continued on the banks of the Dnipro River on August 23 and 24.

The guests had an opportunity to join a variety of Noospherean activities: master classes in robotics and rocket science, coloring contests and speed-puzzle assembly, and much more.

An event highlight was one of the stages of our art initiative Noosphere Art Rocket Park – a contest, an exhibition, and a charity auction.

Guests of the festival born in 1991 had the chance to leave palmprints in the colors of the national flag on a rocket sculpture, which was later named “Palms of the Independent Generation”. And of the 23 sculptures it gained a place in the Gagarin Park exhibit in Dnipro, and then was added to the charity auction.

The Noosphere Art Rocket Park: country-wide art initiative

The Noosphere Art Rocket Park exhibit opened at Gagarin Park on October 2. The exhibition was preceded by an art competition, where 500 concept designs for the rockets by artists from all over the country were considered.

From the 500, 23 rockets were chosen for development and implementation. Each artist worked in his or her own style: “petrovka”, prima-chunk motifs, neo-cubism, street art, and even the technique of “scrawlgraphy”. In their works, the artists reflected their unique vision of our cultural symbols, history, and images with which our country is connected.

The next stage of Noosphere Art Rocket Park was a charity auction, which raised money for the further renovation of Gagarin Park.

The local stage of the NASA Space Apps Challenge – 2021

In October, Noosphere again successfully unified art and science.

On October 2-3 we organized (for the fifth time) the local stage of the NASA Space Apps Challenge in Dnipro.

This year, the 48-hour online hackathon had participants from 160 countries solve tasks from NASA experts under the guidance of mentors.

The hackathon brought together people of all ages and backgrounds, from working scientists to amateur students.

When Noosphere first curated Dnirpo’s stage of the event in 2017, 60 space enthusiasts joined. In 2021 there were already 156, and the geography of participants covered 5 regions of Ukraine!

The local tournament winners this year were:

1 place – OSTE S TEAM.

Project: an application that reproduces the environment of an asteroid and simulates how its surface reflects light. This program can be used in the field of education.

2nd place – Aerospace Technologies Corp.

Project: a system of stratospheric vehicles made from available materials.

3rd place – SPACE HEALERS.

Project: a Telegram bot where you can test your knowledge of the risks associated with human spaceflight and experience being a captain of a spaceship.

Subsequently, Aerospace Technologies Corp made it to the global list of finalists and got a chance to compete for a visit to a rocket launch in the US and a chance to present their project live to NASA experts.

Our sporting events

Autumn with Noosphere delighted us with sports experiments and achievements.

In September we held the Noosphere Games – a new format of sporting event. Simultaneous competitions were held in several disciplines. We combined kayaking races for IT specialists in doubles and individual classification, as well as an open beach soccer tournament.

Then the Noosphere soccer team won 3rd place. And in November, our players won the IT Championship!

Students rocket and archaeological researches

Other stellar events of 2021 were the launching of student rockets by the Rocketry Agency team working out of the Noosphere Engineering School. For the first time in Ukraine, there was a successful launch of an ultralight rocket to 6,500 meters, and an attempt to launch a suborbital rocket to an altitude of 40,000 meters.

Additionally, the archaeological branch of Noosphere Engineering School has been quite active. Last year they carried out a range of field research projects (Bielskoe ancient settlement, Kanzerka gully) using innovative technologies: georadar, drone- and LIDAR sensing. More details about these innovative technologies and all Noosphere Archaeology events are available here.

Participation in friendly events

Finally, yet just as importantly, Noosphere expanded the educational realm and participated in the book festival “BookSpace”. And from page to screen,  we participated in the innovative film festival KINNOVATION, where we presented our new ambitious STEM film project. 

Next year, we will have so many more innovative, interesting things to check out!