Friday, September 03, 2010
Here is an example of good public relations from NASA. The space agency had to get rid of a satellite that lived past its time by crashing it into the ocean. What better way to get that done than to give the job to a class of college students as a problem in orbital mechanics? The students had to calculate the satellite's position, when to fire the rockets on the craft and meet all the other safety measures that go into bringing a satellite down without injury to life or property. Then they did it. NASA could have done this work itself -- and in fact, it did the last time it decommissioned a satellite in 2002 -- but it used a necessary task as a way to interest students in the agency and in space. That's smart PR and a great educational tool.