Rocket Launch 2010


Contact: Evangeline Lyu


Future Engineers and Scientists Compete in Rocket Launch

Discovery Science Center’s competition set for Saturday, May 1 at The Boeing Company, Huntington Beach


SANTA ANA, Calif., April 15, 2010 –Taco Bell Discovery Science Center, is hosting a free event, “Launch 2010,” at The Boeing Company’s Huntington Beach site on Saturday, May 1.

The public is invited to design, build and launch rockets made of two-liter plastic soda bottles. Using a combination of pressurized air and water for propulsion, the rockets launch and deploy a parachute. The parachute with the longest “hang time” in the air wins. The grand prize is the opportunity to view a real rocket launch at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.

Co-hosting this year’s event are Boeing executives Rick Baily and Steve Oswald, a former NASA astronaut.

“We’re always looking for exciting ways to engage students in hands-on math and science learning,” said Rick Baily, Boeing vice president of Engineering and Mission Assurance, and Discovery Science Center board member. “Launch 2010 is a great partnership that connects Boeing employees with our future engineers and scientists. We’re excited to be a part of this great event.”

“Through our partnership with Discovery Science Center and FSEA, Boeing seeks to encourage young people everywhere to explore careers in science and technology and help define the future,” said Steve Oswald, vice president and general manager of Boeing’s Intelligence and Security Systems.

Students will have the chance to meet some of the scientists and engineers who have made a career of building rockets, spacecraft and airplanes.

Registration begins at 8:30 a.m., and pre-registration is available online HERE. The competition begins at 9 a.m. and concludes at 2 p.m. There will be multiple categories.

“It is an honor to be hosting FSEA’s rocket launch competition on the grounds of the Boeing Huntington Beach site that has an extremely rich space heritage having supported the Apollo, Skylab, space shuttle, International Space Station, and Delta rocket programs,” said Janet Yamaguchi, vice president of education at Discovery Science Center. “Being able to meet talented engineers who are making a difference in the U.S. space program and other Department of Defense programs will serve as a great inspiration to these students.”

The FSEA Rocket Launch Competition is one of many FSEA programs that seek to impassion fourth through twelfth grade students in the fields of science and engineering. The aim is to encourage greater numbers of young people to pursue higher education and a career in these fields. FSEA clubs engage the students in innovative, hands-on, content-rich projects and real-world investigations. These long-term projects develop teamwork, leadership, and problem-solving skills – all enviable traits as future employees and responsible citizens.

For more information on the event, including rules, regulations and information on how to reserve your spot in the competition, visit Registration is available online or on the day of the event, Saturday, May 1. No fees. Bring your own 2-liter bottle. Other supplies are provided.

About Steve Oswald, former NASA Astronaut


Oswald joined NASA in November 1984 as an aerospace engineer and instructor pilot and was selected as an astronaut candidate in June 1985. His technical assignments within the Astronaut Office have included: flight crew representative to Kennedy Space Center; flight software testing with the Shuttle Avionics Integration Laboratory; crew representative to the Marshall Space Flight Center on solid rocket booster redesign; and spacecraft communicator (CAPCOM) in the Mission Control Center during Space Shuttle missions. He was also the Chief of the Operations Development Branch within the Astronaut Office and served as Assistant Director of Engineering at Johnson Space Center.

Oswald has piloted two missions aboard the Space Shuttle Discovery: STS-42, the International Microgravity Laboratory-1 mission, flown in January 1992, and STS-56, the second Atmospheric Laboratory for Applications and Science (ATLAS-2) mission, flown in April 1993. Oswald commanded STS-67, the second flight of the Astro observatory (Astro II), which flew on the Space Shuttle Endeavour in March, 1995. This mission established a mission duration record for Space Shuttle at 17 days. With the completion of his third space flight, Oswald has logged over 33 days in space.

After STS-67, Oswald was assigned to NASA Headquarters in Washington, DC as Deputy Associate Administrator for Space Operations. In this capacity, he was responsible for Space Shuttle, Expendable Launch Vehicles, and Space Communications for the Agency. After nearly two and a half years in Washington, Oswald returned to the Astronaut Office in July 1998.

Oswald retired from NASA in January 2000.

About Future Scientists and Engineers of America

Future Scientists and Engineers of America is a national program of Discovery Science Center. FSEA gives students an opportunity to experience real engineering and science with a practical, hands-on method which uses projects that challenge student teams to creatively solve problems. With Future Scientists and Engineers of America, while students are building a rocket, ROV, or pendulum clock, they’re building teamwork, knowledge, and a really sweet future.

About Discovery Science Center

Orange County’s only Smithsonian Affiliate, Taco Bell Discovery Science Center is better than ever! If you haven’t been lately, it’s been too long! Walk through the belly of a giant dinosaur in Dino Quest, feel the winds of a hurricane in a simulator and gear up for flying pucks in The Science of Hockey. Make sure to stop by our newest, permanent exhibit, Planetary Research Station. It’s out of this word!

Hundreds of thousands of students and families experience science, Southern California-style at Discovery Science Center each year. What will you discover? 2500 N. Main St., Santa Ana, Calif., open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. most days. For more information on annual memberships, group rates, special events, teacher workshops, sleepovers and more, call 714-542-CUBE or visit us online:

About Boeing Defense, Space & Security

A unit of The Boeing Company, Boeing Defense, Space & Security is one of the world’s largest defense, space and security businesses specializing in innovative and capabilities-driven customer solutions, and the world’s largest and most versatile manufacturer of mility aircraft. Headquartered in St. Louis, Boeing Defense, Space & Security is a $34 billion business with 68,000 employees worldwide.

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