Washington - August 25, 1999 - U.S. Secretary of Education Richard W. Riley is unveiling the Mars Millennium Project (MMP) Web site on August 26th at the California Science Center. This ambitious project will link hundreds of thousands of students across the United States in a multi-year effort to design a community for human inhabitants on Mars in the year 2030.
The Planetary Society has sponsored and built a major portion of the Web site, called "Artists, Scientists and Astronauts." That portion is hosted by Charles Kohlhase, a member of the Society's Advisory Council and a noted planetary mission designer and artist.
Kohlhase obtained the participation of 60 successful and influential people from 21 different fields, who contributed their own stories to the Web site. Contributors include Author David Brin, Architect Paolo Soleri, Designer Syd Mead, Internet Guru Vinton Cerf, Astronaut Kathy Sullivan, and Scientist Alex Filippenko.
Students and teachers visiting the site will discover what energizes these leading artists, scientists and astronauts, and what gets their creative juices flowing.
While the students are preparing to design their own Martian communities, they can gather ideas from the visionaries featured on The Planetary Society's section of the MMP Web site. Many of the contributors are on the cutting edge of their fields, and they have much to teach.
"What our contributors have to say will help young people in deciding what to do with their lives," according to Kohlhase, who further notes: "The secret to a fulfilling life is to get an education, discover what you love to do, and then live your dreams to the best of your ability."
The Mars Millennium Project encourages students to form small teams to think through the requirements for a community for 100 humans on Mars in the year 2030. These student teams will be led by teachers or professionals from the school's community. Already, 40,000 schools (K-12) and other youth organizations have signed up to participate during the 1999-2000 school year.
The MMP is jointly sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the National Endowment for the Arts, the J. Paul Getty Trust, and the White House Millennium Council.
The Planetary Society supported this initiative to help engage the public in the arts, sciences, technology, astronautics, and space exploration. The Society works vigorously to promote the robotic and human exploration of Mars.
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