Press Release

Challenger Center Joins Astronaut Parazynski on Return to Mt. Everest

By SpaceRef Editor
March 27, 2009
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Challenger Center Joins Astronaut Parazynski on Return to Mt. Everest

Challenger Center Board members Keith Cowing and Miles O’Brien support astronaut Dr. Scott Parazynski on journey

Alexandria, VA – Former Astronaut Dr. Scott Parazynski is returning to Mt. Everest the highest peak in the Himalayas with the support of the Challenger Center for Space Science Education and its network of Learning Centers. Two members of the Challenger Center’s Board of Directors, television journalist Miles O’Brien and web journalist Keith Cowing will be assisting Scott in his ascent by providing support both at Everest Base Camp and back in the U.S.

The first stop for Scott this year was Kathmandu. He is now trekking in to Everest Base Camp. After arriving at Everest, he will spend the next several weeks working his way progressively higher on the slopes of Mount Everest, with the goal of standing on its summit in the 2nd or 3rd week of May. Scott hopes that teachers and students will follow his adventures, enabled by base camp and stateside teammates Keith Cowing and Miles O’Brien. To help students to get engaged in the expedition, Scott plans to post responses to student questions, photos, videos, and scientific experiment information on his blogs. To link to websites to follow his journey, visit

Last year, before his first attempt to climb Mt. Everest, Scott gave an interview to Dr. June Scobee Rodgers, Challenger Center Founding Chairman. To listen to Dr. June Scobee Rodgers interview with Scott, visit The expedition will also be documented on the Discovery Channel for which Scott will serve as the climbing team doctor. He also plans to conduct biological and geological research high on the mountain for colleagues at NASA and perform some field testing of hardware, including a prototype lunar geological hammer and a hydration system he developed at NASA.

Scott will also be using a SPOT Satellite Personal Tracker that will track his movements throughout his trip. By visiting an online resource, students can see where Scott is on the mountain each day, all the way to the very summit. Scott plans to return to the U.S. in late May.

Challenger Center for Space Science Education was founded in 1986 by the families of the astronauts of the space shuttle Challenger 51-L mission and is dedicated to the educational spirit of that mission. Challenger Learning Center programs at 46 centers worldwide continue the crew’s mission of engaging teachers and students in science, mathematics, engineering and technology. To locate a Challenger Learning Center near you, visit

For Challenger Center information, please contact:

Rita Karl, Director of Education
Challenger Center for Space Science Education, Alexandria, VA

SpaceRef staff editor.