NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology

More than 1,200 boy scouts from Southern California packs will be participating in JPL's first Boy Scout Day on Sunday, March 16, from 1 to 5pm.

Sponsored by the JPL Public Services Office, Boy Scout Day will give scouts a firsthand opportunity to interact with male JPL scientists and engineers. The event is designed to introduce different applications of scientific principles into the scouts' academic regimen, and to give them role models with careers they may someday choose to follow themselves.

Activities for younger cub scouts include building and launching air-propelled bottle rockets and sodium bicarbonate- propelled paper rockets to help demonstrate the principles of propulsion and physics. Completion of these and other activities will go toward the Cubs' earning their "scientist" badge or belt loop and "arrow points."

Older boy scouts will be building model rockets, which will later be equipped with functioning solid propellant-fueled model rocket engines and launched independently by participating scouts. The scouts will also construct a model Earth orbiting space station which, in conjunction with the construction of a model rocket, will go toward earning their space exploration merit badge.

"This is going to be a fantastic opportunity to raise the scouts' enthusiasm for space exploration and science," said Phillip Harley, Cub Scout leader of Pack 304. "These kids will be in high school six or seven years from now, and the exposure they'll get on Boy Scout Day will help them discover career opportunities they may never have known of before." Forty of the 72 scouts in Harley's pack will be participating in Boy Scout Day at JPL.

Other activities include interactive discussions with JPL astronomers covering topics in aeronautics, astronomy and planetary sciences. Scouts will be introduced to the many careers in aerospace and related sciences open to them at places like JPL.

This event follows the highly successful Girl Scout Day, held at JPL in February. More than 400 girls attended the event, each successfully building their own sodium-bicarbonate powered rocket and learning more about careers in aeronautics and astronomy.

News Media Contact