Blast of glory for outback six-year-old
First nbn™ satellite named ‘Sky Muster’ by Alice Springs students
The mind of a six-year-old girl from the Northern Territory has been sent into a galactic spin today as she was given the opportunity to name one of the world’s largest commercial satellites and decorate the nose cone of the rocket launching it.
Boldly going where no Aussie student has gone before, six-year-old Bailey Brooks from Lilla Creek station, 400km south of Alice Springs, was selected from hundreds of entries as the winner of the nationwide competition that called on school children to illustrate how fast broadband will make Australia a better country.
Run by nbn™, the company building Australia’s new broadband network, the Shoot for the Stars competition invited children aged 5-12 to submit their own painting or drawing, competing for the chance to have their artwork displayed on the side of the rocket launching a communications satellite 36,000km into space.
Bailey and her remote classmates from School of the Air in Alice Springs also won the opportunity to name the satellite, calling it Sky Muster. Referring to the gathering of cattle, the name captures how the satellite will help ‘round-up’ and connect Australians together.
One of Australia’s most prolific children’s authors and competition judge Morris Gleitzman said the quality of entries demonstrated that the Aussie traditions of cheekiness and creative thinking are alive and well.
“Kids’ imaginations have always operated at millions of megabytes a second, so it’s very exciting for them to see that communications technology is finally catching up. Their illustrations show how much they relish being connected to a wider world of ideas and possibilities as well as to their fellow Australians.
“All kids deserve the best education we can manage, regardless of their postcode, and high speed broadband is going to lend an important hand in the classroom and at home. Thanks to Sky Muster, fewer kids will miss the digital bus.”
Schooled remotely over satellite internet, Bailey Brooks was excited to win the nationwide competition.
“I felt special when I found out I won. My drawing is me with a satellite dish on my house and all the stars in the sky. The satellite helps me and my friends do our school work.”
Sky Muster will be the first of two satellites which nbn™ will send into space, with the launch currently scheduled within the next year – it will play a crucial part in levelling the playing field between city and bush by helping to deliver fast broadband services to more than 200,000 homes and businesses.
As well as a national winner, the competition judges chose winners from each state who will be awarded with a commemorative plaque for their school and will receive a trip to Questacon, The National Science and Technology Centre.
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Notes to editors
About nbn’s™ Long Term Satellite Service (LTSS):
- nbn’s™ first satellite is expected to launch from the Guiana Space Centre in Kourou, French Guiana later this year followed by the expected commercial availability of its wholesale Long Term Satellite Service (LTSS) in 2016.
- The LTSS will deliver wholesale broadband speeds of up to 25 Mbps download and 5 Mbps upload.
- The exact number of premises covered as well as the regions covered in by LTSS may vary once nbn™ has finalised its construction planning.
- We’re designing the nbn™ network to provide these speeds to our wholesale customers, telephone and internet service providers. Your experience including the speeds actually achieved over the nbn™ network depends on the technology over which services are delivered to your premises and some factors outside our control like your equipment quality, software, broadband plans and how your service provider designs its network.
About nbn’s™ Shoot for the Stars competition:
- Timings: The Promotion commenced at 9am EST on 9 February 2015 and closed 5pm EST on 15 March 2015 and the winner was announced on nbn’s™ website on 1 May 2015. Entry was open to Australian residents aged 5 – 12 years old excluding immediate family members of nbn™ employees.
- Mechanic: Australian school children aged 5 – 12 years were asked to provide an original painting or drawing they have created that shows how the nbn™ network will make Australia a better country. The valid entry judged to be the most creative and original in each state and territory received a State prize. The valid entry judged to be the most creative and original in Australia received the grand national prize.
- Morris Gleitzman – Australian Author
- Julia Dickinson – nbn™ Satellite Architect
- Jennifer Kernahan – Teacher and Australian Family Editor
- Prize: The State prize includes a trip to Questacon with one of the entrant’s parents for each of the eight state and territory winners. The grand national prize winner chosen from the finalists will also have their illustration displayed on a rocket which will transport an nbn™ satellite into orbit and their school worked with nbn™ to name that satellite.
- National winner:
- NT – Bailey Brooks, age 6, Lilla Creek (Alice Springs School of the Air)
- State and Territory winners:
- QLD – Amelia Ryan, age 7, Holland Park (Saint Joachim’s Primary School)
- NSW – Mackenzie O’Connor, age 10, Kellyville (Sherwood Ridge Public School)
- VIC – Kayla Feldman, age 8, Bentleigh East (Beth Rivkah Ladies College)
- TAS – Heidi Cook, age 11, Newstead (St. Leonard’s Primary School
- WA – Isaiah McManus, age 12, Jurien Bay (Home Educated)
- ACT – Thaineo Chamtaprieo, age 5, Ngunnawal (Mother Teresa School)
- SA – Haley Michos, age 5, Beaumont (Linden Park Primary School)
- For more information and to view the winning entries visit nbnco.com.au/stars