Science and Technology News

Monday, January 23, 2012

Virginia Students to Speak Live With Space Station Astronauts

Ann Marie Trotta
Headquarters, Washington

Rachel Kraft
Johnson Space Center, Houston

WASHINGTON -- Students gathered at The University of Virginia College at Wise will speak with Expedition 30 Commander Dan Burbank and Flight Engineer Don Pettit aboard the International Space Station at 9:20 a.m. EST on Thursday, Jan. 26. Media representatives are invited to attend.

Approximately 2,500 students from southwestern Virginia will ask questions about life, work and research aboard the space station. NASA Associate Administrator for Education and former astronaut Leland Melvin will attend, and Gov. Robert McDonnell and U.S. Sen. Mark Warner will connect virtually with the event. It will be broadcast live on NASA Television.

To attend the event, news media must contact Jennifer Maggard at or 276-328-6111 no later than noon on Wednesday, Jan. 25. The university is located at One College Avenue in Wise.

Students from Wise County Public Schools will participate in science, technology, engineering and mathematics learning activities before and after the event. A temporary space museum set up at the university Jan. 25 - 26 will display a moon rock, a spacesuit like those worn by Apollo astronauts and an inflatable replica of NASA's Curiosity rover currently en route to the Red Planet.

This in-flight education downlink is one in a series with educational organizations in the United States and abroad to improve STEM teaching and learning. It is an integral component of NASA's Teaching From Space program, which promotes learning opportunities and builds partnerships with the education community using the unique environment of space and NASA's human spaceflight program.

For NASA TV downlink, schedule and streaming video information, visit

For information about NASA's education programs, visit

For information about the International Space Station, visit

To follow Twitter updates from Burbank and Pettit, visit and

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