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For Release: November 30, 1995

Catherine Watson
(804) 864-6122

Release No. 95-111


NOTE TO EDITORS/NEWS DIRECTORS
Astronaut Thagard to Visit Hampton Roads, Discuss 115 Days Aboard Mir

QUICK LOOK:

Astronaut Norm Thagard will visit Hampton Roads Dec. 5 to discuss his 115 days aboard the Russian space station Mir. Thagard will speak to children at the Virginia Air and Space Center (VASC) from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. and meet with students at Phoebus High School at 3:30 p.m. The Phoebus students are building a one-story high model rocket that will be launched from Wallops Island in mid-December. Thagard also will be available for interviews at 1:15 p.m. at the NASA Langley H.J.E. Reid Conference Center. In addition, Thagard will present a free lecture to the public on his Mir mission at 7:30 p.m. at the VASC.

Astronaut Norman Thagard, America's longest-flying space traveler, will visit Hampton Roads Dec. 5 to talk about his 115 days aboard the Russian space station Mir. Thagard will share his life in space with children at the Virginia Air and Space Center from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. At 2 p.m., Thagard will speak to NASA Langley employees at the H.J.E. Reid Conference Center, and will be available for media interviews at 1:15 p.m.

At 3:30 p.m., Thagard will visit students at Phoebus High School, Hampton, who are building a one-story high model rocket. The students plan to launch the rocket from NASA's Wallops Island Flight Facility in mid-December. The Phoebus rocket will carry two instruments that will make measurements of the atmosphere as the rocket parachutes to earth after ascending to 2,000 feet.

Thagard will speak extensively throughout the day about life aboard the Mir and give a first-hand account of what it's like to readapt to gravity after prolonged periods in space. Thagard also will discuss what was learned about the mental and physical well-being of culturally diverse crews such as those who will live together on the future international space station.

Thagard has bachelor's and master's degrees in engineering science and is a doctor of medicine. He was selected as an astronaut in January 1978 and is a veteran of five space flights, logging a U.S. record of 140 days in space.

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