Science. Technology. Arts. Engineering. Maths (STEAM)
Astronaut in Training
Performer | Theatre maker
Niamh is passionate about all things Space and plans to be a future space colonist, to contribute to human space exploration as artist and communicator. In this capacity as Astronaut-in-Training, she recently returned from a simulated Mars mission, as artist and journalist for Crew 173, a team of six international analogue astronauts at the Mars Desert Research Station in the Utah desert. Later this summer she embarks on a Zero gravity flight at Star City, Moscow (see further details in the movie below), exploring weightlessness on Earth and the frailties of human in the extremes. And she continues to plan her next analogue mission to extreme terrains on Earth. She is Core Lectures Associate Chair and lecturer at the International Space University’s 2017 annual Space Studies Programme in Cork, is an 2015 alumnus of this same programme and lectured in 2016 in Humanities department activities.
Niamh promotes STEM (science, technology, engineering & maths) careers and women in STEM in her public speaking activities and her contributions on national TV, radio, and press. She speaks at InspireFest this July about her dream to contribute to human space exploration as an artist and communicator. Other speaking events include TEDxUCD and & World Science Festival, Brisbane and Scintillating Science with Dara O’Briain during Science week 2016.
She hosts STEM-related events for corporate clients, the general public and families including ‘My Place in Space’Bright Club, Dream Big- an evening with Astronaut Al Worden and space tourist Cyril Bennis, Shakespeare Lives in Science: Can Shakespeare make you fall in Love? at Cheltenham Science Festival (2017, 2016) Northern Ireland Science Festival (2017), Science week (2015, 2016), Space week (2016), Festival of Curiosity (2014, 2015). She brings a number of Space-themed family events to Cork this summer as part of the Space Studies Programme Summer of Space programme.
Her other work in science art & technology and public engagement includes Memory of Place (Festival of Curiosity, 2016, 2015), ’To Space’ (Edinburgh Science Festival 2016, Adelaide Fringe 2016, Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2015), Dream Big (Int. Space University, 2015) ‘Speaking with Plants’ (UCD Science Expression, 2014), That’s About The Size Of It (Dublin City of Science 2012, Dublin Fringe Festival 2011), Boys of Foley Street (ANU productions, Dublin Theatre Festival 2012). Her work has been supported by the European Space Agency (2015), Science Foundation Ireland (2014), The Arts Council of Ireland (2014, 2011), Arts@CERN (2011), Show in A Bag (2011), Dublin City Council Drama Bursary (2011), and is an alumnus of MAKE (2011), The SPACE Programme (2011), The Festival of Curiosity Residency (2013), and The Robert Wilson Watermill International Spring Residency, New York (2010).
She is a member of function(core), a transdisciplinary and international collective composed of scientists, musicians, engineers, entrepreneurs, actors, architects, physicists, chemists, futurists, writers, and creative technologists, who form teams called cores around unsolvable problems. She co-founded STEAMakers a global initiative to provide quality public engagement events incorporating creative technologies. Recently voted one of Ireland’s leading science communicators, she is a Science Gallery Leonardo, the Dublin point of contact, on behalf of Blackrock Castle Observatory for Ireland’s national Space week and is the Space Ambassador to Northern Ireland for the ESA’s education and resource office (ESERO UK). She contributes to BBC’s monthly Sky at Night magazine and writes a multimedia column aimed at adults to encourage new ways to engage with STEM, for the online journal Headstuff .
Niamh believes that we can be many things at the same time. She is curious, always and embraces failure every day.
STEAM Art |Theatre | Events
Speaking | Presenting | Media
Dave Fanning Show- talking TED talks
Moderated (and created ) by the brilliant Dr Niamh Shaw, the evening began when the two special guests were both asked what made them decide they wanted to dedicate their lives to space exploration. Unfortunately all good things must come to an end as the night had to come to a close.. with everyone already smiling from ear-to-ear after hearing such wonderful stories and adventures.Cian O'Regan
Astronaut In Training | Explorer
Here are some images and videos from my recent simulated Mars mission at The Mars Society’s Mars Desert Research Station in the Utah desert in the USA. I was a member of Crew 173 along with Michaela Musilova (Crew Commander, Slovakia), Roy Naor (Crew Geologist, Israel), Idriss Sisaid (Crew Engineer, France) and Richard Blake (Greenhab Officer, Australia).
If you would like to know more about our mission, here are my daily journal entries which were published by Headstuff science editor:
Sol 0- Introduction to Life on Mars
Sol 1- my first EVA
Sol 2-Culture night on Mars
Sol 3-Trouble sleeping
Sol 4- Snow on Mars
Sol 5- Irish night on Mars
Sol 6- your money’s no good here
Sol 7- why we are all on Mars
Sol 8 & 9- getting in to the swing of Mars
Sol 10- when the French TV crew came
Sol 11-our time is almost up
Sol 12- someone’s eating all our data
Sol 13- when Crew 174 arrives
Sol 14 and beyond- Life after Mars