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Buckley officer aids in win at first space competition

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- The Rangeview Space Raiders won the first StellarXplorers space competition April 15, 2015 at the Space Foundation Discovery Center in Colorado Springs, Colo.

Five teams of high school students assembled to tackle a problem of orbital design.

Rangeview High School competed with three Colorado Springs, Colo. schools and one from Grand Junction, Colo. The Rangeview Space Raiders consisted of Si Hien K Son, Gage T. Niles, Herman Solis and Dave Nuttall and the team was coached by L. Thomas Brown one of four science, technology, engineering and mathematics teachers. Brown was assisted by Sean R. Kassube of the Rangeview teaching staff and the team mentor: 2nd Lt. Christopher L. Dong, Buckley Air Force Base.

Each team was given a common problem in orbital design and were challenged to choose an orbit which would meet the contest's objectives, while working within the contests constraints. The teams used a software package to design their orbit, check the constraints and explain the rationale for their decision.

Each team briefed their results to the judges, Col. Martin French, Air Force Academy Astronautics Department head and Capt. Gregory R. Frey, AFA Astronautics Department, in the Area 51 conference room within the discovery center.

Maj. Gen. Steve Denker, Air Force Space Command, announced the results of the competition with Rangeview High School in first and Vista Ridge High School of Colorado Springs, Colo. being the runner up.

To learn more about Space Foundation STEM education outreach and programs at www.spacefoundation.org/education. See details about the 31st Space Symposium at www.spacesymposium.org.
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