An aeronautical engineer aiming to become the first Irish person to travel to space is set to make a guest appearance at The STEM Village at Air Waves Portrush.

Dr. Norah Patten from County Mayo will attend the two-day event, organised by Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council, on September 1st and 2nd where she will share her inspiring plans for space exploration and answer questions from any buddings scientists.

Last year Dr Patten became Ireland’s first scientist-astronaut candidate with Project PoSSUM (Polar Suborbital Science in the Upper Mesosphere), a unique space training programme in Florida.

The Deputy Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council Councillor Trevor Clarke said: “Since its successful debut at Air Waves Portrush in 2016, the STEM Village has doubled in size and is now a highlight of the ground attractions.

“We are very excited to welcome Dr Patten whose exciting aeronautical experience will bring the industry to life and showcase the vast opportunities which STEM subjects can offer. I have no doubt our visitors will be inspired by her enthusiasm and we are looking forward to welcoming her to Portrush and hear her story so far.”

Dr Patten’s journey to space began with a visit to NASA as an 11-year-old girl. This sparked a life-long fascination with what lies beyond the stars which has shaped both her academic life and career path.

The STEM Village, sponsored by MJM, is bigger than ever with 20 exhibitors alongside the Education Authority’s STEM Module mobile laboratory and workshop. Located in East Strand car park, it provides a bespoke space for employers and education providers to showcase their facilities, projects and skills in an engaging and interactive way.

The line-up of exhibitors includes the Royal Aeronautical Society, Bombardier, Sentinus and Survitec and promises visitors an inspiring and interactive experience.

Make sure to get involved with our exciting competitions throughout the weekend, including a very special opportunity to design a Mission Patch for Dr Patten available exclusively inside the Air Waves Portrush souvenir programme. All winners will receive a Portable Astronomy Telescope which organisers hope will inspire our future space travellers.

Air Waves Portrush is organised by Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council with support from Tourism NI and a range of other local sponsors.

Keep up to date with the latest information by following @AirWavesPortrush on Facebook and @PortrushAirshow on Twitter

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