Press Release

Challenger Center for Space Science Education Infuses Sound Environmental Practices

By SpaceRef Editor
August 18, 2009
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August 18, 2009, Alexandria, VA — Challenger Center for Space Science Education, best known for its Earth and space science simulations for students across the nation, has been going green for the past decade. Green technologies introduced within the network of 45 Challenger Learning Centers include moving to green energy-efficient Mac mini computers that use less energy. Challenger Learning Centers have also upgraded to energy efficient LCD monitors and televisions that use 50% less energy than the old CRT monitors and televisions. Through the use of the Mac mini’s operating system’s auto shutdown and startup function, simulator computers now automatically shutdown in the evening and startup in the morning, saving on energy usage.

Challenger Center for Space Science Education is working to incorporate environmentally friendly building solutions for future Challenger Learning Center constructions to reduce material usage and to use recycled energy efficient steel construction methods. New Challenger Learning Centers have more energy efficient lighting installed throughout the center, reducing power consumption by almost 50%, and use Internet protocol-based audio visual systems, reducing hardware and cabling requirements by 40%, saving even more on power consumption.

The latest local green initiatives for Challenger Learning Centers include conducting Earth science and environment-themed workshops for teachers and afterschool programs for students aligned with their Earth and space science missions. Challenger Learning Centers’ highly trained science educators are uniquely poised to offer workshops in carbon footprint reduction, recycling and alternative energy. The 45 Challenger Learning Centers are encouraged to work with their network of more than 6,000 local schools to look at paper reduction, energy use reduction, recycling and other methods to help reduce costs and conserve resources in the environment.

Challenger Learning Centers’ educators impact more than 40,000 teachers and 300,000 students each year, supporting school-based and informal Earth and space science programs and are the appropriate choice for leading new green initiatives for communities and schools, such as planting trees, cleaning up watersheds and improving organizational practices.

Using space exploration as a theme and simulations as a vehicle, Challenger Center creates positive educational experiences that raise students’ expectations of success, fosters a long-term interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, and inspires students to pursue studies and careers in these areas. To learn more, visit

SpaceRef staff editor.