VOYAGE to Spread Space Excitement Educator Newsletter
Editor: Talia Jurgens
Volume: 2, Issue: 57
Date: 10-4-2002

Table of Contents

Protein Crystal Growth Experiments in Space
Once in a lifetime opportunity for Teachers and Students
Deadline is October 15, 2002

The Texas Space Grant Consortium will offer students and teachers in Texas the opportunity to conduct protein crystal growth experiments in their class and load flight samples for space flight. While the teachers and students learn how protein crystals grow on earth and why growing crystals in space is important they will conduct experiments and research on the importance of biomedical studies. Selected teachers and students will load flight samples that will launch on the Space Shuttle and fly in the International Space Station. This is a first come, first served opportunity as supplies are limited. Information about the Protein Crystal Growth and a printable application can be downloaded at the above URL. The deadline is October 15, 2002.

Blast off to Mars

You and your crew are about to blast off to Mars! Now you must decide what to take on the long journey in space. The spaceship that will take you on the 9-month journey to Mars is already in a "parking orbit" around Earth. Everything you will need after you get to Mars has already been sent ahead to the red planet. The orbiting Mars spaceship already contains everything you need to stay alive: air, food, water, heaters. But you need to decide what else to take. For example, what favorite foods and beverages will you want to take? And, how will you pass the time? You will be allowed to take only 10 items. Just remember, some things that work fine on Earth will cause problems in zero gravity! When you are happy with what you've loaded in the rocket, you can blast off to Mars!

Space Day 2003

Space Day 2003 is here! The new Design Challenges are here! This year, as the nation prepares to commemorate the Centennial of Flight in the coming year, Space Day 2003 Celebrating the Future of Flight will honor the past 100 years of aviation and aerospace accomplishments while seeking to inspire the next generation of inventors, innovators, aviators and dreamers. The Space Day 2003 Celebrating the Future of Flight educational initiative is launching three new Space Day Design Challenges. These challenges are designed to inspire students in grades 4-8 to create innovative solutions to aviation and aerospace challenges. The three 2003Design Challenges are:Fly to the Future; Planetary Explorers; Watt Power! See the URL above for details.

National Student Rocket Competition

Do the students and teachers at your local or former school know about the Team America Rocketry Challenge, the first national model rocket competition for U.S. high school and junior high school students? Five winning student teams will share a total prize pool of $59,000. In addition, three of the top ten teams are eligible to win $2500 grants, including travel expenses, to launch an advanced rocket with NASA, and attend Space Camp. Each of the top 25 teams' schools will be invited to send one teacher on an all expenses paid trip to attend an advanced NASA rocketry workshop, meet with NASA scientists and engineers, and tour the Marshall Space Flight Center. This event is sponsored by the Aerospace Industries Association and the National Association of Rocketry. The deadline to enter the contest is November 15, 2002. Visit the URL above to enter.

Earth and Sky Young Producers Contest (K-12)

The Young Producers Contest is an annual event sponsored by the Earth & Sky radio series and the National Science Foundation. Each year, students around the world create their own science radio programs. Earth & Sky chooses the five best and airs them in the spring. All entries must be postmarked on or before Dec. 16. For more information, including guidelines and entry form, see above url for details and to enter.

Free Earth Science Poster series Offered (7-12)

Explore air, ice, land and water through informative posters from the Earth Observing System (EOS) project with these informative, eye-catching posters. Each poster takes a specific topic ranging from ice sheets to volcanoes and explains what NASA scientists are doing to understand that topic. Colorful and instructional satellite images, graphs, and pictures complement the fact-filled information making the posters ideal for the classroom. To download copies or order single sets for educational use, go to above URL.

At Home Astronomy

Whether in class or at home with family, this URL offers exciting hands on astronomy activities such as: Finding the size of the sun and the moon; Making a simple astrolabe; order of the planets; Building a lunar settlement.

West Texas science project to be launched toward outer space

Fort Stockton Texas (MRT) Ping pong ball "Satellites"loaded with scientific experimental material by students at Midland's Goddard Junior High will be flown to the edge of space from the space prot now under construction in Fort Stockton. Ping Pong balls are loaded with scientific experimental material, and hurled into the atmosphere, exposed to temperatures down to 180 degrees below zero Celsius. In the vast nothingness, near vacuum conditions exist and cosmic rays yield shocking blows. That was the scenario earlier this week at Goddard Junior High School. Eighth-grade students in the Honors Integrated Physics and Chemistry class loaded 12 ping pong balls with various substances like batteries, popcorn kernels, bubble wrap, magnets, a superball, plant seeds, photographic film, a small piece of bar ivory soap, a watch and a marshmallow. Fun activities like this are often a motivating factor for students. For more info, visit the url above.

Tips to Navigating NASA Sites

Are you having trouble locating specific items within NASA's on-line community? "Searching NASA," the latest article in Spacelink's Educator Focus can help. "Searching NASA" describes how to use Spacelink's search engine to make more effective searches. The article also provides tips for planning a search and how to interpret the results. "Searching NASA" can be found at the above URL.

Share Your Ideas

Do you have a science or math Web site you've found especially helpful to your students? Send us the URL address and the grade level it best serves. We'll pass it on. Ideas should be sent to

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Last Modified: Mon Oct 14, 2002