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For Release: Immediately

Release No. 97-006

NASA Langley Story Opportunities - January 1997

Robotics Helicopter May Offer New Option For Public Safety. NASA and the U.S. Army have developed a remote-controlled helicopter that could be used for a wide range of tasks, such as precision crop spraying, border patrol, hazardous spill inspection, fire surveillance, crowd security and emergency medical delivery. Called the Free Flight Rotorcraft Research Vehicle, the robotic helicopter can carry a movie camera, a still camera, video downlinks, night vision or infrared cameras. The prototype helicopters are powered by a modified gasoline engine, are about six feet long, including the rotor diameter, and can fly at speeds up to 60 mph. Interviews, video and photos are available.
Public Affairs Contact: Nicole Forest (757) 864-5036

X-33 Wind Tunnel Testing Continues at NASA Langley. A composite model of the next generation of space transportation, the X-33 reusable launch vehicle, is being tested in NASA Langley’s 22-Inch Mach 20 Helium Tunnel. These tests will give Lockheed Martin engineers high Mach number entry aerodynamics that are necessary to design an aerospace vehicle for hypersonic flight. The helium tunnel was chosen because models can be fabricated of wood or plastic. Interviews and photos are available.
NASA HQ Public Affairs Contact: Jim Cast (202) 358-1779
NASA Langley Public Affairs Contact: Ann Gaudreaux (757) 864-8150
Lockheed Martin Public Affairs Contact: Jerry Rising (805) 572-3190

NASA Langley Supports Local School in National Robotics Competition. Students at Phoebus High School, Hampton, are building a robot for a national competition with help from NASA. NASA has given the group of 32 students $30,000 to participate in the high school robotics competition, and NASA Langley engineers will mentor the students for seven weeks. Students must build the robot from a given set of materials and put it through a series of obstacle courses during the competition. The Sixth Annual For Inspiration Recognition of Science and Technology competition is designed to revitalize American youths' interest in science and technology. The Phoebus robot will compete regionally March 20 at Rutgers University in New Jersey. The national competition will be held April 10 at Epcot Center, Orlando, Fla. Interviews, video and photos are available.
Public Affairs Contact: Nicole Forest (757) 864-5036

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