United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs

United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) DropTES Fellowship Programme for International Students 2018

 In collaboration with the Center of Applied Space Technology and Microgravity (ZARM) and the German Aerospace Center (DLR), the fellowship programme offers a selected research team the opportunity to conduct its own microgravity experiments at the Bremen Drop Tower. The series of experiments will consist of four drops or catapult launches during which approximately 5 or 10 seconds of microgravity, respectively, are produced.

Application Deadline: 31st January 2018

Eligible Countries: UN Member Nations

To Be Taken At (Country): Bremen, Germany

About the Award: The Drop Tower Experiment Series is a fellowship programme of the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) in which students can learn and study microgravity science by performing experiments in a drop tower. The Bremen Drop Tower in Germany is a ground-based laboratory with a drop tube of a height of 146 meters, which can enable short microgravity experiments to be performed in various scientific fields, such as fluid physics, combustion, thermodynamics, material science and biotechnology.

Type: Fellowship


  • The DropTES Fellowship Programme is open to research teams from entities that are Member States of the United Nations. Teams should consist of up to four Bachelor, Master and/or PhD students who must be endorsed by an academic supervisor.
  • It is further required that the proposed experiment be an integral part of the students’ syllabuses, that is, part of a Bachelor thesis, a Master thesis, a PhD thesis, or another form of research project associated with the applicants’ studies at the respective university.

Number of Awards: Not specified

Value of Award: The selected research team will be offered financial support exclusively for travel purposes. This may include the provision of most economical economy class round-trip air tickets between the participants’ international airport of departure and Bremen. En-route expenses or any changes made to the air tickets must be the responsibility of the participants.

Duration/Schedule of Program:

February 2018:

  • Selection of the winning research team by the Selection Board
  • ZARM contacts the selected research team to initiate the experiment preparation once the team confirms its participation

February – October 2018:

  • Experiment preparation in close cooperation with ZARM experts
  • Submission of the first Experiment Progress Report(EPR) at the beginning of May
  • Critical Design Review (CDR) soon afterwards
  • Submission of the second EPR at the beginning of September
  • Transfer of the experiment and further required equipment to the Bremen Drop Tower in Germany in October or November depending on customs issues

November 2018:

  • One week of experiment integration at the Bremen Drop Tower prior to the series week
  • One week drop tower experiment series with four drops or catapult launches

December 2018-January 2019:

  • Submission of ZARM’s Feedback Report to the Selection Board
  • Submission of the Final Experiment Report (FER)

February 2019-…:

  • Publications of results in journals, proceedings, and others by the research team if possible
  • Presentations of results at conferences, workshops, and others by the research team – if possible
  • Part of a Bachelor thesis, a Master thesis, a PhD thesis, or another form of research project associated with the drop tower experiment series

How to Apply: 

  • The fully completed Application Form (.doc), properly endorsed by the applicant’s institution, should be emailed to hsti-droptes@unoosa.org both in PDF format (.pdf) containing the signature page, and in MS WORD (.doc), no later than 31 January 2018.Please note that our email accounts only accept emails with a size limit of up to 10 MB. 
  • The applicants should also mail the fully completed original application form to the following address: Office for Outer Space Affairs, United Nations Office at Vienna, Vienna International Centre, P.O. BOX 500, A-1400 Vienna, AUSTRIA.
  • UNOOSA will then proceed to evaluate each submission. At UNOOSA’s sole discretion, additional information may be requested from applicants, if necessary, to assist in the evaluation of an application. Selected applicants will then be notified with the results of the selection process. All awards are final and made at the sole discretion of UNOOSA, not subject to challenge or review.

Visit the Program Webpage for Details

Award Providers: UNOOSA

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