Friday, April 2, 2010

Astronaut Buzz Aldrin Trades in Moonwalking Boots for Dancing Shoes

Buzz Aldrin in Dancing with the StarsFormer astronaut Buzz Aldrin, one of the original moonwalkers, is now working on other moves as a contestant on the show “Dancing with the Stars.” He’s been rehearsing his steps for more than five hours per day.

"My primary motivation for joining the show is to help bring NASA and the U.S. human spaceflight program to the front of popular consciousness. Until there's a spectacular success or failure, the space program is not on everyone's lips," Aldrin says. "’Dancing with the Stars’ has an audience of millions of followers and it would be great if those viewers became supporters of our space program. I’m hoping that all of my old friends and colleagues in the space community can tune in and cast their vote for the octogenarian on the dance floor!"

During the show’s March 22nd season premiere, Aldrin received a surprise message from more than 220 miles above the Earth. Fellow astronauts recorded a message to wish him good luck from aboard the International Space Station.

The International Space Station, a joint project of five space agencies, is the largest and most complicated spacecraft ever built. Upon completion of assembly later this year, the station’s crew and its U.S., European, Japanese and Russian laboratory facilities will expand the pace of space-based research to unprecedented levels. Nearly 150 experiments are currently under way on the station, and more than 400 experiments have been conducted since research began nine years ago. These experiments already are leading to advances in the fight against food poisoning, new methods for delivering medicine to cancer cells and the development of more capable engines and materials for use on Earth and in space.

Learn more about the space station and even learn when it’s flying over your city by visiting the Space Station section.

To learn more about Buzz’s new endeavor, visit his website.

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