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France joins International Youth Rocketry Challenge

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Aerospace Industries Association (AIA)
: 22 June, 2009  (Company News)
The international youth rocketry competition is expanding to three contenders with the addition of France to the ranks of the UK and United States challengers.
GIFAS, the French Aerospace industry association and Planète Sciences announced today that France will field a rocketry competition this fall and will compete against the UK and U.S. teams next year at the Farnborough International Air Show. France also plans to host the international fly-off outside of Le Bourget in June 2011.

“Today’s ceremony demonstrates the tremendous global enthusiasm for programs that attract youth to our industry,” said Marion Blakey, president and CEO of AIA. “We’re delighted that France will be part of the international competition next year and look forward to other countries following in their footsteps.”

“In France, Planete Sciences has been organizing campaign launches for many years but the International dimension of the contest adds a new incentive for participating students” said Jean-Pierre Ledey, Chairman of Planète Sciences.

“And a new educational aspect” concurred Guy Rupied, managing director of GIFAS. “in the sense that nowadays all sizeable projects in our industry are undertaken through international cooperation.”

'The UK also welcomes the addition of further competition from our French colleagues. The inaugural tri-nation fly off at the Farnborough International Airshow in 2010 will be a tremendous event' said Ian Godden, chief executive of SBAC.
Marion Blakey, president and CEO of the Aerospace Industries Association; Guy Rupied, managing director of GIFAS; Ian Godden, chief executive of SBAC; and Jean-Pierre Ledey, chairman of Planète Sciences participated in a signing ceremony today. They pledged to support the rocketry program in their countries and work to expand the competition to other countries.

French students joined student rocketeers from Madison West High School in Madison, Wis., and the Royal Liberty School in Romford Essex, who competed in the second Annual Transatlantic Rocket Fly-Off in May. The five-member team from Royal Liberty School won the international fly-off.

The contest brings together teams of middle and high school students to design, build and launch model rockets with a raw-egg payload that must return to the ground unbroken. This year’s contest goals were an altitude of 750 feet and a flight time of 45 seconds with the egg situated horizontally to mimic the position of an astronaut.

Raytheon brought this year’s winning U.S. team to the Paris Air Show as part of their prize. Similarly, the U.K.’s Raytheon Systems Limited is a sponsor of the UKAYRoC competition and supported the winning U.K. team’s attendance at the Paris Air Show. The sponsorship of these students at the Paris Air Show is part of Raytheon’s ongoing commitment to math and science education. Raytheon truly believes that tomorrow's engineers and technologists need to be excited by and interested in math today.
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