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JP Aerospace: Benjamin Franklin Citizen Scientist Award

Published by Sigurd De Keyser on Sat Sep 9, 2006 10:30 pm
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John Powell, President of JP Aerospace, was honored with the 2006 Benjamin Franklin Citizen Scientist Award at the fourth annual National Citizen Science Conference in Providence, Rhode Island. He won for his years of effort and achievements in space science, including space education through his PongSat program, where thousands of students have been able to fly their experiments, called PongSats, to the edge of space at no charge.

Dr. Shawn Carlson, Founder and Executive Director of the Society for Amateur Scientists, presented the award during the Franklin Awards Banquet on August 26, 2006.

“JP has been leading quite a revolution in space science for over 27 years and has an extraordinary record of success,” said Carlson. “His commitment to inspiring the next generation through his PongSat program was cited in particular by the selection committee.”

The award was created to recognize and promote excellence in citizen science, for important contributions to science without an earned Ph.D. Previous winners include astronomer David Levy, paleontologist Jack Horner, and electronics author/writer Forrest M. Mims III. A panel of some of America’s most distinguished scientific talent chooses the winner from a list of candidates.

Powell’s acceptance speech and lecture discussed his research working at the edge of space, flying student experiments on the company’s high altitude platforms, and a call to action in regards to the current state of science education. The company is also known for its high altitude airship research.

JP Aerospace, “America’s OTHER Space Program,” is volunteer-based research organization dedicated to achieving cheap access to space “by just doing it.” The group has flown 87 missions to date.

The mission of the Society for Amateur Scientists is to remove the roadblocks that prevent ordinary people, of all ages, from participating in extraordinary science. Run by a unique consortium of professional and amateur scientists, the 12-year old organization is the only non-profit research and education organization dedicated to helping people enrich their lives by following their passion to take part in scientific adventures of all kinds.

PongSat is a registered trademark of JP Aerospace.

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