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Feb. 4, 2005

NASA physical scientist Dr. Marco Giardino (center) confers with field guides and crew members on a recent research trip to Cross Bayou in Southeast Louisiana. Giardino, who works at NASA's Stennis Space Center in South Mississippi, was chosen by the national JASON Project to be one of six host researchers for its 2004-05 expedition, "Disappearing Wetlands," which kicked off Jan. 31. Giardino was chosen for Disappearing Wetlands because of his role in the Coast 2050 program, which is working to restore 20,000 square miles of Louisiana wetlands over the next 50 years. He uses NASA satellite imagery to identify threatened archeological sites and provide data to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for evaluation.

Allie Ciaccio (left) of Covington and Erin Maher of Mandeville sift through a sample of water taken from the East Pearl River during a field lab study at NASA's Stennis Space Center (SSC) in South Mississippi. The girls and fellow students from Tchefuncte Middle School in St. Tammany Parish, La., were conducting the study at SSC as part of their participation in the JASON Project's 2004-05 expedition, "Disappearing Wetlands." The expedition welcomed more than 350 fourth- through eighth-graders from Louisiana, Alabama and Mississippi to SSC. In addition to the field labs, they watched live broadcasts from JASON Expedition Louisiana research sites: Barataria Preserve in Jean Lafitte National Historic Park, and Louisiana Universities Marin Consortium at Cocodrie and Port Fourchon.