Lockheed Martin Engineers Inspire Florida High School Students with Launch of New Military Communications Satellite

Merritt High School_2195-460 John Diedenhofen of Lockheed Martin explains the importance of the MUOS program to warfighters around the world

MERRITT ISLAND, Fla., February 14, 2012 –  Employees from Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] visited with approximately 70 students from Merritt Island High School (MIHS) to discuss the Feb. 16 launch of the U.S. Navy’s new cutting-edge military communications satellite known as the Mobile User Objective System (MUOS)

The students are enrolled in the High School’s da Vinci Academy of Aerospace Technology and CubeSat program. The visit was part of an ongoing mentor program Lockheed Martin has had with MIHS since 2009, serving as da Vinci Academy of Aerospace Technology advisory team members and student mentors to encourage the study of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).

“At MIHS, the da Vinci Academy of Aerospace Technology and the CubeSat program offer teens real-world, hands-on engineering experiences that help shape their future careers as STEM leaders,” said Gary Shiffrin, Merritt Island High School principal. “A recent study found that over half of today’s youth are more likely to consider STEM careers after learning about the breadth of what engineers actually do. It is our responsibility, therefore, to let these students experience STEM now, so that later, they will enter STEM careers important for our country and our world.”

To help MIHS with this mission, and as part of the company’s Engineers in the Classroom program, several Lockheed Martin engineers are mentoring the students as they develop their CubeSat project. The CubeSat will be integrated with the Atlas 531 rocket that will launch Lockheed Martin’s second Advanced Extremely High Frequency satellite this spring. To help the students prepare for their CubeSat’s launch, Lockheed Martin engineers visited the students to educate them on the MUOS mission and upcoming launch, and to address questions related to satellite and launch vehicle integration.

 “Lockheed Martin has an enduring tradition of working with educators and students to inspire and prepare our next generation of engineers, scientists, and space explorers,” said Kevin Bilger, Lockheed Martin Space Systems vice president and general manager of Global Communications Systems.  “We are proud to support MIHS students and we encourage their continued pursuit of engineering, science and technology learning.  We look forward to the launch and mission success of their CubeSat experiment.”

Lockheed Martin’s Engineers in the Classroom (EITC) education outreach initiative is designed to identify, develop and inspire students toward entering careers that have their foundation in STEM.  Engineers in the Classroom supports a wide-range of best-practice programs that contain STEM content that aligns with local, state or national standards of learning.  Through EITC’s portfolio of programs, events and campaigns, Lockheed Martin is reaching students and educators at various levels of engagement – large audience awareness, small group participation and one-on-one interaction.

Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security company that employs about 123,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The Corporation's net sales for 2011 were $46.5 billion.

For more information please visit MUOS program,  EITC,  da Vinci Academy of Aerospace Technology

Merritt High School_3660-220 After the formal presentation, several MIHS students stay back to discuss their CubeSat program with Lockheed Martin employees.
Merritt High School_2165-220 Gurkirat Kainth, MIHS student in the CubeSat program, discusses the technical challenges of his project with Lockheed Martin engineers Eric Talley, left, and Jason Phelan.
Merritt High School_2125-220 Kenneth Bullock, left, and Eugene Leong of Lockheed Martin Space Systems discuss their technical expertise and background at Lockheed Martin with Merritt Island High School students in the da Vinci Academy of Aerospace Technology.