Raphael Schilling, V3PO young scientist

For Raphael, it’s obvious how important agriculture is, since it provides people around the world with fresh, nutritious food. It's something he sees every day in his work on the family farm. But how can we feed people who are travelling in space and not living on Earth? That’s the question this ambitious young scientist is investigating together with his friends in the V3PO project. As Raphael sees it, to answer this unique experimental question you need ambition, perseverance and a creative mind for new ideas. That researchers must be willing to persevere is something the 19-year-old has learnt first-hand: The initial attempt to find financing for the V3PO project didn't work out. It wasn't until the second try that they received the money they needed – experiences that were for Raphael both a low and a high point of the project. Another high point was the week-long internship at BASF's laboratory, where he got a real look into the world of research. Raphael was able to draw on the experience he gained there and put it to work in the school laboratory. In general, what he enjoys most is working together with his teammates in the lab. Now he's eagerly looking forward to getting the results once the cuttings return from their trip into space – which will also mark the conclusion of the project. But Raphael will still have his agricultural work back on Earth to keep him busy because he is now studying agriculture at university, and will then go into farming. But maybe if a farmer is ever needed to work onboard a space station in the future, then Raphael would have all the necessary skills.