From 400 km above the surface of Earth, ESA astronaut Luca Parmitano talked with high-school students during the finals of the Volare Space Robotics Challenge.

Seven teams entered remote-controlled robots that battled on a mock-up of the International Space Station. Their mission: to unload cargo from ESA’s Automated Transfer Vehicle as quickly as possible while avoiding objects.

Students at ‘ground control’ gave instructions wirelessly from the control centre next door. Multipliers added more strategy to the competition.

The two-day event was the culmination of lots of hard work from the seven teams of high-school students. The highlight for many students was visiting ESA’s laboratories and of course a live call with ESA astronaut Luca Parmitano straight from the International Space Station.