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01-075
For Release: September 25, 2001

Barbara L. Kakiris, InDyne, Inc.
Media Relations Office
216/433-2901

Lori J. Rachul
Media Relations Office
216/433-8806
Lori.J.Rachul@nasa.gov


NOTE TO EDITORS/NEWS DIRECTORS:

Educational Program Encourages Public to "Go Fly a Kite"

New meaning will be given to the old phrase "go fly a kite" when researchers from NASA Glenn Research Center, Cleveland, Ohio join students and community organizations nationwide in a unique partnership to celebrate Ohio's prominence in the centennial of flight.

On September 27, there will be two live webcasts from Glenn's hangar to kick off the Center's three-year celebration of the 100th anniversary of flight. Webcasts, each lasting one hour, will begin at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. During the webcasts, participants-primarily middle school students-will gain a comprehensive understanding of flight and its roots in Ohio.

The event's highlight is a 15-foot (actual size) replica of a Wright Brothers kite received by Glenn from a sixth grade class at the Orono Middle School, Orono, Maine, who built it as a science project in 2000 and will also participate in the event. The kite inspired collaboration amongst Glenn, Orono Middle School and the Ohio Society for the Elevation of Kites (OSEK). Technicians in Glenn's Prototyping and Outsourcing Branch reconstructed the kite to replace struts they gave students as mementos and to incorporate the Wright Brothers' wing warping technique for better kite control. The struts were made with spruce wood from Glenn's Icing Research Tunnel and the elevator with rip-stop nylon donated by OSEK. The Wright Brothers flew the original kite/glider in 1900 to understand the fundamentals of aerodynamics.

Other activities include presentations by Glenn experts on the Wright Brothers' initial use of kites to learn how things fly and the ways in which modern airplanes benefit from their first discoveries. The Wright kite will be placed on display at Glenn after the activities.

The broadcast is part of the "Re-Living the Wright Way" program, an educational event series revolving around the Wright Brothers Process of Invention and Centennial of Flight Celebration. This program will last through 2005. Objectives include increasing students' interest in mathematics, science, technology and engineering disciplines and inspiring participants by allowing all to experience the Wright Brothers' invention process through activities and interaction with NASA personnel, technology and resources.

Glenn is the lead Center for NASA's educational effort to celebrate the Centennial of Flight. The "Re-Living the Wright Way" program is led by the Center's Office of Educational Programs and includes the participation of the Learning Technologies Project and other Glenn organizations belonging to the Aerospace Educational Coordinating Committee.

Media representatives interested in attending the event should call ahead to Barbara Kakiris or the Media Relations Office (216-433-2901) in order to be cleared through security. Interested media representatives who are unable to attend may access the event on the Internet: http://www.grc.nasa.gov/WWW/OEP/KITE.

More information is available on the Internet:

                http://www.grc.nasa.gov/WWW/Wright
                http://centennialofflight.gov

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