EXPLORE – EXpeditionary Program for Learning OppoRtunities in analog space Exploration – is an exciting initiative designed to engage students in space exploration experiences while aligning with their STEAM curriculum requirements.

Artist's impression of astronaut and child walking on Mars.

The project is supported by the Erasmus + KA2 educational program and invites students to participate in activities that simulate Moon or Mars environments, providing a hands-on experience of international space missions.

The EXPLORE kit, specifically developed for this project, will encourage students to embrace their inner explorer and embark on a simulated mission to Mars. The kit will be integrated into formal educational settings, empowering educators to deliver STEAM-related content through innovative methodologies.

The project will provide comprehensive training and support for educators to integrate the kit into their curricula and involve their classrooms in preparing for these captivating missions.



Using the context of an exploratory mission to Mars, EXPLORE is a project to bring the future of space exploration closer to the reality of schools and bring the competence profile of educators and learners closer to the real need for emerging economic and societal challenges.


This project addresses a number of growing needs in education, particularly to raise interest and awareness of the importance of STEAM fields among young students; to upgrade educators’ competence profile and learning in various fields; to bring innovation into the classroom and to the student’s learning experience; to improve educators’ and learners’ digital literacy; and to bridge the digital divide ensuring an inclusive environment where the students’ background will be respected, differentiated and personalized. These are areas that are crucial for society’s future needs.


Austrian Space Forum is coordinating the project, leading the partnership of COSPAR, NUCLIO, Ellinogermaniki Agogi and BioSky.

For whom?

30 teachers of STEAM subjects and 360 students (60 upper high school students per country – per year).


An EXPLORE toolkit will provide the tools and instruments for integrating the analog field mission in schools. A carefully selected set of classroom-compatible activities relevant to analog research will be defined and distributed. The activities will cover various curriculum STEAM subjects, including communication and intercultural training, analog space mission operations, geoscience exploration, robotics, and safety and will require minimal training for teachers. The concept will accommodate different learning styles, abilities, and cultural backgrounds to promote inclusivity and diversity. The analog EXPLORE missions will also be conceptualized and designed, preparing the experiments and overseeing arrangements for the on-site analog mission experience. Summer schools to support STEAM subject teachers will also be organised, where the toolkit and program will be presented and discussed. A group of selected students will visit a planetary surface analog site where they will simulate an international space mission and collaborate with peers and professionals from participating countries.


In high schools in Austria, Greece and Portugal. The analog missions will be undertaken in a real scenario in the Lake Alqueva Observatory (Portugal).


36 months, starting 1 September 2023