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U.S. Space & Rocket Center Launches Campaign to Land Shuttle Training Aircraft

Center kicks off first crowd-funding campaign to install STA exhibit

HUNTSVILLE, Ala., March 17, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A team including Space Camp alumni from around the world and the U.S. Space & Rocket Center Foundation is raising awareness and embarking on their first 60-day crowd-funding campaign to bring a Grumman Gulfstream II Shuttle Training Aircraft to the center's Shuttle Park, home of the world's only full-stack shuttle display, Pathfinder. The STA was used by astronaut pilots and commanders to train for flying landing approaches in the orbiter vehicle.

When installed, the STA will complete what USSRC spokesperson for the campaign Trevor Daniels has called a "shuttle trifecta," consisting of Pathfinder, the NASA T-38 Talon and the STA.  

According to John Ramsey, chairman of the Space Camp Alumni Advancement Board, the USSRC will use the aircraft as a museum exhibit and immersive classroom. "I'm a first generation Space Camp alumnus from the 1980s. Shuttle, to current and future Space Camp trainees, is what Apollo and the Saturn V represented to us. Those programs helped inspire imagination and build anticipation for what was yet to come." According to Ramsey, the campaign represents a passing of the torch and a way to help engage the next generation of space travelers and supporters.

The $70,000 crowd-funding goal addresses site preparation and structural supports needed to establish the aircraft on the USSRC site. The "Land the STA," campaign is being run on the crowd funding website Indiegogo. http://igg.me/at/STANASA945/x/4320824 

"The USSRC has a two-part plan for displaying the STA," said Daniels. "Phase one includes installing the aircraft, building a mock runway leading to the display, raising a canopy to protect the aircraft from the elements and adding a staircase for public access. The exhibit's second phase calls for an amphitheater to be built beneath the STA's wingspan for Space Camp graduations and public lectures."

About U.S. Space & Rocket Center
The U.S. Space & Rocket Center, a Smithsonian Affiliate, is home to Space Camp®, Aviation Challenge®, the Apollo 16 capsule, the Saturn V Rocket—a National Historic Landmark and world-class traveling exhibits.  It is also the official visitor's information center for NASA'S – Marshall Space Flight Center.  To learn about all of the exciting programs and activities at the USSRC, go to www.rocketcenter.com.

Trevor Daniels, Community and Government Relations Manager
(256) 721.7192 • [email protected]

SOURCE U.S. Space & Rocket Center

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