NASA is offering opportunities for schools and educational groups to speak with astronauts aboard the International Space Station to learn about living and working in space. Crew members will be available for question and answer sessions in 2013.
NASA offers two options for students to interact with astronauts — in-flight education downlinks and Amateur Radio on the International Space Station opportunities. Proposals for both downlinks and ARISS are being accepted now for opportunities next year.
Downlinks are 20-minute multimedia events where participants see and hear crew members live from space, but the crew has only audio connectivity. The downlinks are broadcast live on NASA Television and streamed on the agency’s website. ARISS events are 10-minute sessions during which participants speak with the crew through amateur radio. Because of the nature of human spaceflight operations, organizations must demonstrate the flexibility to accommodate changes in dates and times.
U.S. educational organizations such as museums, science centers, local school districts, national and regional education organizations, and local, state and federal government agencies are eligible to participate. NASA provides these opportunities through the Teaching from Space and ARISS projects at no cost to the host organization and will work with the host institution to plan the events. Proposals for in-flight education downlinks are due Jan. 18. Proposals for ARISS are due Jan. 28.