NASA: New Names for Twin Lunar Probes To Be Announced Jan. 17


image NASA will host a news conference at 1 p.m. EST, Tuesday, Jan. 17, to announce the names selected from a nationwide student contest for twin spacecraft that will study the Moon in unprecedented detail. The event will be held in the James E. Webb Memorial Auditorium at NASA Headquarters, located at 300 E Street SW, in Washington.

Nine hundred schools and more than 11,000 students from 45 states, as well as Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia, participated in the contest that began in October 2011.

The agency's twin Gravity Recovery And Interior Laboratory (GRAIL A/B) spacecraft successfully achieved lunar orbit on New Year's Eve and New Year's Day, respectively. The status of the spacecraft and upcoming plans for science operations also will be discussed.

NASA Television and the agency's website will broadcast the live event. Journalists can participate from NASA centers or join by phone. To obtain dial-in information, media representatives must contact Steve Cole at stephen.e.cole@nasa.gov, by noon EST, Tuesday, Jan. 17.

Participants:

-- John Grunsfeld, associate administrator, Science Mission Directorate, NASA Headquarters, Washington
-- Leland Melvin, associate administrator for Education, NASA Headquarters
-- Maria Zuber, GRAIL principal investigator, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Mass.
-- Sally Ride, president and CEO, Sally Ride Science, San Diego
-- Teacher and students submitting the selected names

The event will be carried live on Ustream, with a live chat box available:
http://www.ustream.tv/nasajpl2

More information about GRAIL:
http://www.nasa.gov/grail
http://grail.nasa.gov

NASA TV streaming video, downlink and schedule information:
http://www.nasa.gov/nasatv

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