The latest on ISS
As U.S. astronauts and Russian cosmonauts prepare to head to space, NASA gives school children a chance to name a space-station component.
October 19, 2006
NASA and the Russian Federal Space Agency have appointed the International Space Station's (ISS) Expedition 15 crew: astronauts Clayton C. Anderson and Daniel M. Tani and cosmonauts Fyodor N. Yurchikhin and Oleg V. Kotov.
The cosmonauts will reach the space station in March 2007 aboard a Soyuz spacecraft. Yurchikhin will command Expedition 15, and Kotov will serve as station flight engineer and Soyuz commander. Yurchikhin served aboard the space station in 2002.
Anderson will ride to the ISS aboard the space shuttle Endeavour, which is scheduled to launch in June 2007. Until Anderson arrives, astronaut Sunita L. Williams will serve as Expedition 15's third crew member and flight engineer. She will fly to the station on Discovery in December. Tani will replace Anderson in August 2007 after reaching the space station aboard Atlantis. Tani will return to Earth in October 2007.
In other ISS news, NASA wants U.S. school children to name Node 2 the next U.S. pressurized module scheduled for installation on the space station in late 2007. This component will connect international science labs and space supply vehicles. It also will operate as a work platform for the station's robotic arm.
In this contest, students from kindergarten through grade 12 will work together as a class or school to build a Node 2 model and select a name for the module. A panel of NASA scientists, engineers, and educators will review the submissions. The deadline to enter is December 1, and the winner will be named in early 2007.
To register your class or school in the Node 2 challenge, send an e-mail to this address: NASA-ESC@nasa.gov.