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For Release: January 22, 2004

Sallie A. Keith
Media Relations Office


The next generation of explorers will get the chance to flex their imaginations during two live distance learning events sponsored by NASA's Glenn Research Center on Friday, January 23 at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Middle school students from around the country will be able to learn about the past, present and future of Mars exploration, compare conditions on Mars and Earth and discuss barriers to manned space exploration.

Several Glenn engineers involved in the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission will contribute to a discussion on what a manned mission to Mars would entail. Some subjects they will address include what humans would need to survive on Mars, how astronauts would get to the red planet and what yet needs to be done to prepare for the journey. Sharing their knowledge will be Joe Kolecki, physicist who consulted on the MER mission, Jerry Carek, who oversaw testing of the airbags used to successfully land on Mars and Stan Borowski, senior research engineer, who is working on a propulsion system concept for a space vehicle to reach Mars.

To log on to the Webcast and for more information on this event visit:

This event is being produced by Glenn's Educational Programs Office. For more information about other NASA educational programs on the Internet, visit



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