May 8, 2008

NASA Starts Artifact Loan Project

The U.S. space agency has announced the start of a new artifact loan program for museums, planetariums and other organizations.

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration project is designed to help organizations borrow space exploration-related artifacts for educational and outreach purposes.

The first artifacts available are the main landing gear tires from space shuttles, including some flown on missions. The tires, as all other artifacts, will be loaned to organizations that NASA determines best meet its education and public outreach goals.

Officials said the new program gives organizations that aren't traditionally associated with the agency the chance to have access to NASA artifacts. Such organizations may include but aren't limited to, museums, schools and civic groups, NASA said.

The deadline for proposals on the initial opportunity is June 11.