Historic Zero-Gravity Flight with Professor Stephen Hawking On Schedule for April 26, 2007
CAPE CANAVERAL, FL - April 25, 2007 - Zero Gravity Corporation, the provider of weightless flight experiences for the general public, will host renowned British cosmologist and best-selling author, Professor Stephen Hawking, aboard a historic zero-gravity flight on April 26, 2007 from Kennedy Space Center, Florida. In preparation for the flight, Zero Gravity Corporation scheduled a test flight on Wednesday, April 25, 2007.
Space Florida, the organization charged with promoting commercial space in the state of Florida, is a sponsor of Professor Hawking's flight. Space Florida's latest venture with the Zero Gravity Corporation - the creation of Florida's Microgravity Education and Research Center - has allowed a Florida teacher and student the opportunity to be involved in Professor Hawking's zero gravity experience.
Ted Straight (center), an 8th grader at Stone Middle School in Melbourne, FL, served as a stand-in for Hawking on the test flight held yesterday. On board the flight, coaches and ZERO-G co-founders Peter H. Diamandis (left) and astronaut Byron Lichtenberg (right) conducted flight protocols planned with Professor Hawking. Pictured here, they helped to guide Straight from both sides as he floated up from the floor of the aircraft during a zero-gravity parabola.
Susan Harris, a teacher at Hill-Gustat Middle School in Highlands County, FL, also participated in the test flight in preparation for her flight coach duties on Hawking's zero-gravity flight scheduled for later today, Thursday, April 26. The corporate sponsor for the Hawking flight is The Sharper Image.
Note to editors: Please find the attached photo of 8th grade student Ted Straight (center). Photo courtesy of Zero Gravity Corp. Video footage of the Hawking test flight with Ted Straight is available upon request.
Rosalie Huerta/Lourdes Diaz
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