Corbin Cooper is a 5th year Mechanical Engineering Co-op student that joined AlbertaSat in September 2013. Corbin’s main goal has always been to one day become an astronaut, AlbertaSat became a way for him to gain experience in space missions. He was also intrigued by AlbertaSat’s ambitious goals in the industry, Corbin joined at a time when the team didn’t yet have much experience and he really enjoyed becoming a part of that. He started as Assistant Project Manager, then became a MechE team member and is now currently the Deputy Project Manager for Ex-Alta 2. Corbin prides himself in his support of friends in the work that they’ve done, he humbly sees himself as a support role. He has been very busy and involved with his school work but still finds time to be involved in all the workings of the project.
In his personal life, he is most proud of his accomplishments in baseball. He has played 9 season of competitive baseball and represented Alberta at Westerns in Junior. Some other cool accomplishments of his include having worked for Defense Research and Development Canada (DRDC) where he gained 12 months of work experience and assisted a defense scientist in the study of improvised explosive device threats (IED). He also tested counter IED technology and got to blow some stuff up.
After he graduates, Corbin has multiple different career paths that he could follow. His main goals are not necessarily restricted to engineering related disciplines. Corbin hopes to become a fighter pilot and/or an astronaut. Basically everything he does is to acquire skills to one day become an astronaut. Through all the time Corbin has spent at AlbertaSat his favorite part of the team is the ambitious goals of the group as well as the comradery. He also really loves the stickers. The group has become really close and gotten to a level of friendship while working towards such a big project.
If faced with the decision of launching 1000 1U CubeSats or one 1000U CubeSat, Corbin would choose 1000 1U CubeSats. At first he was skeptical, as he decided it would be amazing if he could build the 1000U and make a spaceship out of it or at least a zero gravity dodgeball pit, however after doing the math, he decided that it just wouldn’t be big enough for a spaceship and therefore decided to go with 1000 1U CubeSats.
Corbin is very excited to be a part of the Ex-Alta 2 from day 1, he is able to be there from the early stages and see Ex-Alta 2 unfold from the beginning. Unlike the average engineering student, Corbin really enjoys documentation and the writing regarding the mission, being there from the beginning has really given him the opportunity to do all the documentation that he enjoys. He is very proud to be a part of AlbertaSat, and loves that Ex-Alta 1 was Alberta’s first satellite to be launched.
One of main things that I took away from meeting Corbin was his true passion for the work he’s doing to pursue his dream job of becoming an astronaut. He has had this dream since he was in junior high and has continued to push for it. He has met a Canadian astronaut, and has gotten his open water scuba diving course. Currently, Corbin is working on a MechE 460 project designing a cube satellite and hopes that it will be a design that one day AlbertaSat can use and relate it to real world problems. Some more cool experiences of Corbin’s include attending CaNoRock 11 XI which is a mini week long exchange where students from the University of Alberta, Saskatchewan and Calgary go to Norway to the University of Oslo’s rocket range ANDOYA satellite rocket mission.
Corbin always expresses empathy and understanding for others and really loves to learn and go through the process or learning from experience, even experiences that aren’t necessarily his. He is always willing to learn more and to learn about the approach of a project or idea form parents, friends, and professors.
Author: Casia McLeod