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NOTE TO EDITORS: #J04-057
 
 
December 16, 2004

James Hartsfield
Johnson Space Center, Houston
281/483-5111



NOTE TO EDITORS: #J04-057

MEDIA INVITED TO INTERVIEW ASTRONAUT, TOUR SIMULATED SPACE STATION

Media may tour a simulated Space Station and interview a veteran astronaut who has lived aboard the International Space Station on Tuesday, Dec. 21, at Space Center Houston, the visitors' center adjacent to the Johnson Space Center.

The opportunities kick off the International Space Station Trailers exhibit, Space Station Imagination, which will be at Space Center Houston throughout the holidays, Dec. 21-Jan. 2. On Tuesday, the exhibit and Astronaut Peggy Whitson, who lived aboard the Station in 2002, will be available from 6 a.m.-8 a.m. CST for media interviews, tours and live remote feeds. The exhibit normally travels throughout the country and is rarely available in Houston.

Space Station Imagination provides a glimpse of how astronauts live and work aboard the International Space Station. Assembly of the Station and the long-duration spaceflight research that is conducted on the complex are a crucial stepping stone in plans to return humans to the Moon and journey on to Mars. The exhibit is housed in two 48-foot trailers that form two Station-like modules: a living quarters, or Habitation Module, that shows how astronauts sleep, eat and tend to personal hygiene aboard the Station and a Laboratory Module that offers examples of various experiments performed in orbit.

The exhibit is free and will be open 10 a.m.-7 p.m. daily. It will close at 5 p.m. CST on Christmas Eve and be closed on Christmas Day. The exhibit is located in the parking lot of Space Center Houston, 1601 NASA Parkway.

Whitson logged 184 days in orbit during her flight to the International Space Station on the Expedition 5 mission. During her stay, Whitson helped install the Mobile Base System and truss segments and performed a spacewalk to install shielding on the Zvezda Service Module. She was named the first NASA Station Science Officer, conducting 21 investigations in human life and microgravity sciences.

Media who want to arrange an interview with Whitson and a tour of the exhibit should contact the JSC Newsroom by 5 p.m. CST Monday, Jan. 21.

For Whitson's complete biographical information, visit:

http://www.jsc.nasa.gov/Bios/htmlbios/whitson.html

For more information on NASA and its programs, visit:

www.nasa.gov

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