Astronaut Tim Peake's high praise for Sheffield student who corrected NASA data error

Sheffield schoolboy Miles Soloman - who corrected an error in NASA data - has received high praise indeed from none other than astronaut Tim Peake.

Thursday, 23rd March 2017, 8:18 pm
Updated Friday, 24th March 2017, 10:08 am
Miles Soloman.

The 17-year-old spotted that sensors on the International Space Station were giving false readings.

The Tapton School sixth former contacted scientists at NASA to report the fault, which had escaped their notice, and they asked him to help investigate by charting the anomalies.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

He has now been praised for his eye-catching work by British astronaut Tim Peake, who spent 186 days aboard the International Space Station.

He tweeted: "Brilliant work by student who helped fix an error in radiation monitoring analysis on #ISS - well done Miles!"

Miles had been looking at the readings as part of the TimPix project, run by the Institute for Research in Schools, which gets students to analyse data and look for patterns which could lead to scientific breakthroughs.

James O'Neill, head of physics at Tapton School, said: "Miles was looking at the data. He just suddenly perked up and said why does it say there's minus one energy here?

Tim Peake.

"He'd noticed that when nothing hit the detector it was giving a negative reading, but you can't have negative energy."

NASA was aware of the problem, it turned out, but thought it was only happening a few times a year rather than on a daily basis. A professor who works with scientists there said they 'appreciated' Miles' correction.

Miles said: "I've got to say it's pretty cool."

Tim Peake.