"Sally Ride Science is an innovative science content company dedicated to supporting girls' and boys' interests in science, math, engineering, and technology. Sally Ride Science manages the Sally Ride EarthKAM program.
Sally Ride EarthKAM (Earth Knowledge Acquired by Middle school students) is a NASA educational outreach program that enables students, teachers, and the public to learn about Earth from the unique perspective of space. During Sally Ride EarthKAM missions (periods when the Sally Ride EarthKAM camera is operational), middle school students around the world request images of specific locations on Earth. The entire collection of Sally Ride EarthKAM images is available in a searchable Sally Ride EarthKAM image archive. This image collection and accompanying activities are extraordinary resources to engage students in Earth and space science, geography, social studies, mathematics, communications, and art.
The project was initiated by Dr. Sally Ride, America’s first woman in space, in 1995 and called KidSat. The KidSat camera flew on three space shuttle flights (STS 76, 81, and 86) to test its feasibility. In 1998, the program was renamed EarthKAM. The EarthKAM camera flew on two more shuttle flights (STS 89 and 99) before moving to the International Space Station (ISS) on Expedition 1 in 2001. Sally Ride died in 2012, and in 2013, NASA renamed the program Sally Ride EarthKAM. The Sally Ride EarthKAM camera remains a permanent payload on the ISS, supporting about four missions annually."
The Sally Ride EarthKAM Mission Operations Center (MOC) is located at UCSD, the University of San Diego, in California. The students had to learn how to apply for a picture using this computer Before that they had to search for a certain location the picture should be taken from the orbit. High quality knowledge in geography and maths were necessary to apply for the expected photo and to focus on the corselett the picture usually shows. The accepted picture requests will be delivered to the NASA - Johnson Space Centre in Houston, Texas. They uplink the requests to the Sally Ride EarthKAM. The NASA - Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena is responsible for the image processing and the image archive. All pictures taken by this camera are stored at this archive and available for all paticipating students.
Several students from my classes took part to the November 2014 mission this year and got their certificates of completion this morning.
They hope to reinforce their vocational applications later when they are school's finalists. Congratulations to all participants.
The next mission is actually dated for 27th January - 31st January 2015.