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NASA Challenges 350 Rocketeers Nationwide to Aim a Mile High
Students participate in the student launch initiative
Students participate in the student launch initiative

Students participate in NASA's Student Launch Initiative. Image credit: NASA/MSFC
NASA has invited more than 350 student rocketeers from middle schools, high schools, colleges and universities -- 37 teams nationwide -- to take part in the 2009-2010 NASA Student Launch Projects. Their challenge is to build powerful rockets of their own design, complete with a working science payload, and launch them to an altitude of one mile.

On Tuesday morning, April 13, at 11 a.m. EDT, Julie Clift, a graduate co-op with the Marshall Academic Affairs Office and a longtime organizer of the rocket challenge, answered questions about the Student Launch Projects.

More About the Student Launch Initiative
NASA's annual rocketeering projects include the Student Launch Initiative for middle and high school teams and the University Student Launch Initiative for colleges and universities. Both challenges are designed to inspire students to parlay their interests in science, technology, engineering and mathematics into rewarding careers in fields critical to NASA's mission of exploration and scientific discovery.

The Student Launch Projects will culminate April 15-18, 2010, when the teams gather at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. Marshall manages the projects. NASA engineers will put the students' rockets through a professional design review similar to that undertaken for every NASA launch. The students then will embark on a two-day "launchfest" at Bragg Farms in Toney, Ala., where they are cheered on each year by hundreds of Marshall team members and North Alabama rocket enthusiasts.

For more information about the Student Launch Projects and a list of participating schools, visit:

For more information about other NASA education initiatives, visit:

Janet Anderson, 256-544-0034
Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Ala.