NASA Opens a 4-mile Solar System Exhibit

On Saturday, April 9, scientists at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland are unveiling a 4.6-mile long model of our solar system.  The exhibit lies along the Baltimore & Annapolis Trail in Maryland, and features an educational station for each of the nine planets and the sun.  Each of these stations is placed proportionally to their actual distances in outer space, and features NASA scientists, astronomy club members, and local college representatives to present information about each planet and to answer questions.  The sun station even provides visitors the opportunity to use modern observation equipment to try sun gazing.  The day concludes with a series of lectures from Goddard researchers as well as a “star-gazing party” held at local Anne Arundel Community College.

NASA has taken a prominent role in public scientific education recently, and this newest demonstration, called Planet Walk, is only one of their many current outreach programs.  NASA’s Mission X program is a competition of over 2,700 international students to complete 6-weeks of physical training based on what NASA astronauts do to prepare for space travel.  Officials hope this type of program can both promote healthy lifestyles for students, as well as interest them in NASA and current STEM fields.  In addition, NASA scientists recently spoke to a crowd of over 200 New York students in an attempt to interest young students, especially girls, in STEM career fields, and has begun streaming NASA TV online to provide the public with 24-hours of space-related programming.

To learn more about Planet Walk, check out the article from NASA

To keep track of Mission X, go to http://www.trainlikeanastronaut.org

Information about NASA’s New York STEM presentation can be found here,

And a schedule of NASA TV can be found here.

Written by: Bud Palmer

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