Jun 222021

Citadel Youth Centre, EH6 6JE

Black and white portrait of Helen Sharman in her space suit with a sketch of the MIR Space Station in the background painted on the wall of the Citadel Youth Centre
Helen Sharman, OBE, by Shona Hardie. The young people of Citadel Youth Centre prepared the site and created the additional stencil artwork around this portrait. Image by Chris Scott Photography

Helen Sharman was the first British Astronaut. She was chemist from Sheffield working for Mars Confectionery when Project Juno, a partnership between the Soviet Union and the UK to send a British national to space, began. After hearing about the opportunity to go space on the radio, Helen applied and was one of four selected from a group of 13,000 applicants. In 1991, after 18 months of intensive training, Helen flew on a Soyuz rocket up to the Soviet Mir Space Station. During her eight days in space, Helen conducted medical, agricultural, materials, and Earth observation work. She also worked with school children, communicating with them via an amateur radio link and bringing seeds on board to be used for a student-led experiment on the effects of space travel on seeds. Helen now works for the National Physics Laboratory and as a UK Outreach Ambassador for Imperial College London. She has spent many years sharing her experiences and passion for space to inspire the next generation of budding scientists, technologists, engineers, and mathematicians.

Jun 222021

Dynamic Earth, EH8 8AS

Portrait of Dr. Kathy Sullivan in her flight suit with a background that merges space and the ocean displayed at the entrance of Dynamic Earth
Dr. Kathy Sullivan by Shona Hardie; image by Chris Scott Photography

Dr. Kathy Sullivan was the first American woman to complete a spacewalk, the first woman to travel to the bottom of the ocean, and the first person to do both. In 1984, Kathy crewed the Space Shuttle Challenger and completed a historic spacewalk that proved it was possible to refuel satellites in orbit. Kathy’s crucial work on satellites continued in 1990 when she was part of the crew that launched the Hubble Space Telescope. In 2020, Kathy travelled to the Challenger Deep, the deepest known part of the ocean in the Marianas Trench, seven miles below the surface. After the dive, Kathy made a phone call to the International Space Station, marking the two extremes of human exploration. Through these landmark milestones, Katy is fulfilling her lifelong passion to understand the world around her and inspiring others to follow their dreams.