In the footsteps of Thomas Pesquet, young engineers dream of the stars

Passing through the door of the Estaca engineering school workshop, one would think you were entering Professor Tournesol’s workshop. Tools are everywhere, wheels, boxes, computers are scattered around every corner. A boy dons a neoprene suit in the middle of a boathouse, while three meters from him, a small group bustles around a futuristic rounded automobile. Farther on, a cheerful bunch of bikers examine the V4 of an ageless Honda.

This is where the students of the “new mobility” school work and have fun developing their skills. Everything is the order of the day: aerodynamics, consumption, resistance of materials, mechanics, electronics, IT… Suddenly, the engine of a motorcycle screams, pushed to more than 10,000 rpm, twisting the eardrums. Chloé Pasquier, 23, does not blink. We ask him:

– “The noise does not bother you to work? “

– “No, in terms of noise, it is rather our team that holds the rope. “

– ” What are you doing ? “

– ” A rocket. “

Space students from Estaca. From left to right: Hugo Da Silva, Chloé Pasquier, Benjamin Wurgler, Etienne Montier and Martin Noble.

“He shifted the field of possibilities”

While astronaut Thomas Pesquet left command of the International Space Station to return to Earth on November 9, future “aerospace” engineers keep their gaze fixed on the sky with the firm idea that their turn will come. “For a generation of French engineering students, Thomas Pesquet made space exploration go from a distant dream to something concrete. It was built like us, in a high school, a preparatory class, an engineering school. For us, he shifted the field of possibilities ”, testifies Benjamin Wurgler, 21, in 4e year at Estaca. Becoming an astronaut was a childhood dream. ” I kept it. “ he continues.

Read also Thomas Pesquet back on Earth: what to take away from the mission? Our answers to your questions.

If the career of Thomas Pesquet, graduate of the Higher Institute of Aeronautics and Space, Isae-Supaéro, is a source of inspiration, the passion of his potential successors is often built well upstream. “I have always been fascinated by astronomy, says Alysée Lecleve, 20, in 3e year of aerospace engineering at IPSA, the place of the earth in the immensity of the universe and what man will be able to achieve there. There is so much to discover ”, enthuses the young woman. Ditto for Hugo Da Silva, in 4e year at the Estaca: space conquered him by surprise, as a child. “My mother took me to the planetarium at the Cité des sciences in Paris, I saw the stars, the vastness of the universe, there was a wow effect. “ His path is marked out.

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