GREENBELT, Md. - The wonder and science of the search for extrasolar planets will come 'down to Earth' in a unique way on Tuesday evening, June 5, when a new artistic installation is unveiled at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. The exhibit is part of a new educational initiative to educate and stimulate student interest in planetary science.
'Worlds Beyond' is a hands-on educational project that merges the search for planets outside our solar system with the creativity of an interactive art installation. Middle school students from around the Washington area have participated in this pilot education program and will present their finished projects at the special opening event.
The opening will take place at the NASA Goddard Visitor Center, on Tuesday, June 5, from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm EDT. The visitor center is located off of Rt. 193, Greenbelt Rd., in Greenbelt, Md.
In addition to the art exhibition, NASA scientists and engineers will be present to interact with the students and the public to share the wonders of the discovery of extrasolar planets, those that orbit stars other than our sun.
The event will continue into the early evening when the Worlds Beyond exhibition will come alive with an LED light display, representing the Earth's local Galactic region.
George Whitesides, executive director of the National Space Society, remarked, "Worlds Beyond will give students and the public a remarkable personal connection to our celestial neighborhood, and to these special extra-solar systems."
As part of the opening, a new model of the James Webb Space Telescope will be unveiled at the visitor center. The Webb Telescope, managed by the Goddard Space Flight Center and designed and built by prime contractor Northrop Grumman Corp., Los Angeles, Calif., will play a key role in the discovery and study of extrasolar planets.
In addition, noted musician Marty Quinn will perform a new composition inspired by actual scientific data from newly-discovered extrasolar planets.
Worlds Beyond was organized by the National Space Society in partnership with the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, and was sponsored by Northrop Grumman.
For information on Worlds Beyond, please visit on the web:
For more information on NASA's science programs, visit: