Press Release

An Out of This World Learning Experience

By SpaceRef Editor
August 6, 2007
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Longueuil, Quebec, August 2, 2007 – The Canadian Space Agency (CSA) is sending five Canadian high school students, two educators and a CSA space scientist on an Arctic learning expedition with Students on Ice.

This summer, the students and educators aboard the Students on Ice ship will be exploring the Arctic basin from Churchill, Manitoba to Iqaluit, Nunavut with CSA space scientist Dr. Denis Lacelle. On their voyage they will learn about the geological structures of Canada’s north and how those structures compare with what scientists believe to be the geological evolution of Mars, the red planet.

For a number of years, space scientists have been using sites across the world that provide analogous environments to prepare for long duration missions to other planets, specifically Mars. Canada’s north is home to a number of these sites, from Devon Island to Axel Heiberg Island. Teams of scientists flock to the Martian-like terrain during the limited field season to study the evolution of the geological and biological structures of these sites in order to get a better understanding of what they might look for when exploring the red planet.

To top off this unique learning experience, the Students on Ice participants will receive a very special long distance call. Canadian Space Agency astronaut Dr. Dave Williams will contact the ship to speak to the students from the International Space Station, while orbiting approximately 400 km above the Earth. Dave Williams will be establishing a Canadian record with three spacewalks in his second mission to space aboard STS-118.

For more information about Students on Ice:

About the Canadian Space Agency

Established in 1989, the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) coordinates all civil, space-related policies and programs on behalf of the Government of Canada. CSA directs its resources and activities through four key thrusts: Earth Observation, Space Science and Exploration, Satellite Communications, and Space Awareness and Learning. By leveraging international cooperation, the CSA generates world-class scientific research and industrial development for the benefit of humanity. For more information, please visit the Agency’s website:

For more information, please contact:

Julie Simard
Media Relations
Canadian Space Agency

SpaceRef staff editor.