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Students Grapple with Robotic Design Challenge

Press Release From: Canadian Space Agency
Posted: Tuesday, October 23, 2001

Saint-Hubert, October 23, 2001-Today, the Canadian Space Agency launched the Next Generation Space Robot Design Challenge, a learning-based contest open to all intermediate and senior secondary school students enrolled in Canadian schools. The challenge is for students to take their knowledge of science and technology concepts and translate them into a feasible space application-the new generation of space robot used to move payloads on the International Space Station. With the guidance of an adult mentor, students will combine teamwork, creativity, and science to develop ideas for the next generation of space robot. By producing feasible blueprints and business plans, team members will apply knowledge and acquire practical skill sets, which are essential for success in the new knowledge-based economy of the 21st century.

Engineers and academics from the Canadian Space Agency, MD Robotics (Ontario) and York University will review the submissions. These engineers and academics will share their knowledge and expertise about robotic, science and technology applications by responding to questions from student participants via the CSA website at: www.space.gc.ca/kidspace. In February 2002, one team of students and their mentor will be invited to the Canadian Space Agency for a full day of robotics simulation training-the same training that astronauts from all over the world take as they prepare to manipulate Canadarm2 in space. Team members will also have the opportunity to discuss the details of their submission with a select group of engineers during a student/professional exchange. Finally, students will have the opportunity to visit one of the private sector contractors that contributed to the development of Canadarm2.

The deadline for submissions is January 4, 2002. For more details on the robotics challenge and on entry requirements, please see the CSA's KidSpace website at: www.space.gc.ca/kidspace.

About the Canadian Space Agency

Established in 1989 with its headquarters situated in Saint-Hubert, Quebec, the Canadian Space Agency coordinates all aspects of the Canadian Space Program. Through its Space Knowledge, Applications and Industry Development business line, the CSA delivers services involving: Earth and the Environment; Space Science; Human Presence in Space; Satellite Communications; Generic Space Technologies; Space Qualification Services and Awareness. The Canadian Space Agency is at the forefront of the development and application of space knowledge for the benefit of Canadians and humanity, and is committed to encouraging youth, through the unique theme of space, to heighten their level of science literacy, develop a life-long interest in the study of science and technology and pursue careers in science, technology and mathematics.

About MD Robotics

MD Robotics is the world's leading space robotics company, committed to offering hi-tech, sophisticated robotic and engineering solutions for space and terrestrial applications. MD Robotics is a business partner of the Canadian Space Agency.

About York University

York University's YES I Can! Science project is a resource database designed specifically for K-12 teachers in Canada. Containing over 5 000 curriculum-specific lesson plans, activities, background information, and assessment rubrics, the YES I Can! project delivers outstanding classroom materials online at: www.yesican.yorku.ca.

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For more information:
Carole Duval
Media Relations Office
Tel.: (450) 926-4451
Cell.: (514) 914-5453

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