SPARC program will fly again next week

North­east High’s space pro­gram, whose wings seemed per­man­ently clipped just a few months ago, will be fly­ing again next week.

The kids who par­ti­cip­ate in the Space Re­search Cen­ter in North­east’s Med­ic­al, En­gin­eer­ing and Aerospace Mag­net School will headed — vir­tu­ally speak­ing — to the moon for their an­nu­al two-day mis­sion on Thursday, May 22, and Fri­day, May 23.

“Our mis­sion is to es­tab­lish a per­man­ent colony on the moon,” said Joseph Con­nelly, Pro­ject SPARC pro­gram dir­ect­or. 

The mis­sion will have two launches, Con­nelly told the North­east Times  in a May 11 email.

“A Delta 4 rock­et with an Or­i­on cap­sule at­tached will carry our crew of four as­tro­nauts. The oth­er rock­et will be an Ar­ies rock­et that will carry six months of crew sup­plies to the hab­it­at on the moon,” Con­nelly stated.

Two as­tro­nauts will stay be­hind when the oth­ers head home, he said.

This will be a fi­nal flight for many of the SPARC stu­dents. They’ll be gradu­at­ing this year.

Con­nelly said the school’s SPARC wing will re­main open after school from 3 to 5:30 p.m. so vis­it­ors can see the new equip­ment and tech­no­logy up­grades made pos­sible by North­east High alums and by North­east res­id­ents. The mag­net school is loc­ated on the Sum­mer­dale Av­en­ue side of North­east High, 1601 Cottman Ave.

SPARC, like all non­s­ports ex­tra­cur­ricular activ­it­ies, was cut for fin­an­cial reas­ons earli­er this year. Fun­drais­ing on­line and off helped bring in the money to keep it go­ing. ••

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