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NASA Competition Invites Students to Imagine the Future of Aviation


WASHINGTON -- NASA announced Thursday its aeronautics competition for high school and college students during the 2007-2008 academic year. Students are asked to imagine and write an essay or design a next generation aircraft that could join the commercial fleet in 2058.

High school students should prepare a well-informed essay describing how transportation of goods and passengers might be revolutionized in the 21st century as it was in the 1930s and 1940s by the introduction of the DC-3. Essays are limited to 12 pages and should address environmental impacts, including reduced noise and emissions, improved operating costs, the use of alternative fuels, passenger and cargo loads, and use of existing general aviation runways.

College students are challenged to design the next generation aircraft. Design considerations should include environmental impact, daily operations on short runways, passenger and cargo limits, structure and materials, propulsion, and cost analyses for production and operation. Proposals should provide details on three or more valid operational scenarios. University-level research papers are limited to 25 pages.

Teams or individuals may enter in either category. Winners may be invited to a student forum sponsored by NASA’s Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate and receive offers of student internships or other prizes, including cash, depending on available funds. Only U.S. citizens are eligible for cash prizes or NASA-funded internships.

NASA uses this competition to foster the next generation of skilled scientists and engineers critical to the future of NASA aeronautics and the broader aeronautics community. For contest information and submission, visit:


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