Press Release

Media Invited to See Solar Sail – Developing Technology to Propel Spacecraft of the Future – at NASA Glenn Research Center April 27

By SpaceRef Editor
April 27, 2005
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What:

The In-Space Propulsion Technology Project at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., will host a Media Opportunity to showcase testing of a 20-meter solar sail system design. Solar sails use sunlight to propel a spacecraft through space. This continuous sunlight, reflecting off the giant, reflective sails, provides sufficient thrust to perform such maneuvers as hovering at a fixed point in space and rotating a craft’s position in orbit.

The 20-meter tests are a critical milestone in the development of the unique propulsion technology that could lead to more ambitious inner Solar System robotic exploration. ATK Space Systems of Goleta, Calif., is conducting a series of tests in the Space Power Facility — the world’s largest space environment simulation chamber — at NASA Glenn Research Center’s Plum Brook facility in Sandusky, Ohio. Media are invited to view the solar sail hardware and interview managers of the project.

  Who:  

On hand for interviews will be Les Johnson, manager of the In-Space Propulsion Technology Office at NASA’s Marshall Center; Edward E. Montgomery, technology manager of Solar Sail Propulsion at Marshall; and Jerry Carek, manager of the Space Power Facility at Plum Brook.

When:

Wednesday, April 27

11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. EDT

Where:

The Space Power Facility at NASA Glenn Research Center’s Plum Brook Station

To attend:

News media interested in covering the event should contact Glenn Research Center’s Community and Media Relations Office at (216) 433-2037 no later than Monday, April 25, for security clearance and directions to Plum Brook’s main gate. Media must report to the gate by 10:45 a.m. EDT and will be escorted to the Space Power Facility. Vehicles are subject to security search at the gate.

For supporting materials for this news release – such as photographs, fact sheets, video and audio files and more – please visit the NASA Marshall Center Newsroom Web site at http://www.nasa.gov/centers/marshall/news

SpaceRef staff editor.