Hubble Space Telescope, the Space Shuttle Servicing Mission and the International Year of Astronomy Educator Conference

Join NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory Education Office for an education conference being held May 30-31, 2009, near Pasadena, Calif. The conference will celebrate the Hubble Space Telescope, the STS-125 space shuttle mission to Hubble and the International Year of Astronomy.

The Hubble Space Telescope launched on a 15-year mission to explore the universe. Now, just past its 19th birthday, the telescope is getting a new lease on life. Space shuttle mission STS-125 is slated to replace and repair Hubble’s science instruments, computers, batteries, gyroscopes and blankets. This final Hubble servicing mission should allow the telescope to operate as a fully operational, enhanced astronomical observatory for many more years.

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory is taking this opportunity to revisit the Hubble mission and the work of JPL’s Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2, Hubble’s workhorse science instrument. The camera has taken most of the revolutionary images attributed to Hubble. A recap of the shuttle mission activities will take place as well.

2009 is also the International Year of Astronomy. This event is a global celebration of astronomy and its contributions to society and culture. IYA marks the 400th anniversary of the first use of an astronomical telescope by Galileo Galilei. The aim of IYA is to stimulate interest, especially among young people, in astronomy and science under the central theme “The Universe, Yours to Discover.” Conference attendees will learn about IYA 2009 events and activities and about ways to promote a greater appreciation of the inspirational aspects of astronomy.

The conference is designed for all formal and informal educators and students in high school and above. Students under 18 years of age must be accompanied by a registered adult. Registration is due by May 22, 2009. Pre-registration is required.

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