NASA has selected eight teams from middle and high schools across the country to participate in the 2014-2015 NASA Student Launch Challenge, April 7-12, organized by NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama.
The Student Launch Challenge engages students in a research-based, experiential exploration activity. Teams participating in the challenge must design, build and launch a reusable rocket, with a scientific or engineering payload, capable of reaching an altitude of one mile.
Eligible teams pre-qualified by successfully completing the NASA Advanced Rocketry Workshop, and either the 2012-2013 Student Launch Challenge, Team America Rocketry Challenge, or 2014 Rockets for Schools competition.
The 2014-2015 middle and high school teams who will compete are:
- Durham Area Rocketry, Durham, North Carolina
- Krueger Middle School, San Antonio, Texas
- Madison West High School (Land Imaging), Madison, Wisconsin
- Madison West High School (Muons), Madison, Wisconsin
- Plantation High School, Plantation, Florida
- Spring Grove High School, Spring Grove, Pennsylvania
- St. Vincent-St. Mary High School, Akron, Ohio
- Victory Christian Center School, Charlotte, North Carolina
“The NASA Student Launch – now in its 15th year – has engaged hundreds of students and educators in real-world scenarios that solve complex engineering challenges,” said Tammy Rowan, manager of the Academic Affairs Office at Marshall, which organizes the event. “Each team must meet rigorous standards and review processes, just like those applied in the NASA workplace.”
During the design and testing process, the student designs must undergo in-depth technical reviews and follow actual flight safety guidelines, mentored throughout the process by NASA scientists, engineers and educators. These technical reviews mirror current criteria in NASA’s engineering design lifecycle and safety protocol, including preliminary design, critical design, flight readiness and analysis of vehicle systems.
NASA Student Launch engages two target audiences – middle and high school students, and university and college students. Programs for middle and high school students focus on advancing education in science, technology, engineering and math and exposing the students to careers in aeronautics and aerospace.