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The Explore! Fun with Science program is developed. The Explore! program is designed to engage youth in space and planetary science in the library and other informal learning environments through video explorations, related hands-on activities, and supporting resources.

January 7
The Lunar Prospector mission launches from Cape Canaveral. One of NASA’s Discovery Program missions, Lunar Prospector is designed to perform a low polar orbit investigation of the Moon. The data gathered will improve the understanding of the origin, evolution, and current state of the Moon.


March 15
Helpful Hints on Running a Workshop for Teachers, held immediately prior to the start of the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, is the first in a series of LPI-sponsored workshops connecting scientists, educators, and media.


April 30–May 1
The Workshop on Using In Situ Resources for Construction of Planetary Outposts is held in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Convened by Michael Duke, the goal of the workshop is to bring together research scientists and engineers to address the possibility that significant savings can be found in the cost of early human planetary surface outposts through structural applications of in situ materials.


September 18–20

The Workshop on New Views of the Moon:  Integrated Remotely Sensed, Geophysical, and Sample Datasets is held at the LPI. The purpose of the workshop, convened by Brad Jolliff and Graham Ryder, is to bring together diverse areas of the lunar research community to review the current state of key lunar datasets such as those from Galileo, Clementine, and Prospector; discuss issues involved with the integration of such datasets, and foster integrated approaches to address fundamental questions of lunar evolution.


October 18–22
The First International Conference on Mars Polar Science and Exploration is held at the Episcopal Conference Center at Camp Allen near Navasota, Texas. Convened by Stephen Clifford, David Fisher, and James Rice, the purpose of the conference is to assess the current state of Mars polar research; discuss what is likely to be learned from upcoming missions; and identify potential science objectives, spacecraft platform options, and instrument suites for a Surveyor-, Discovery-, or Micro-class mission to the north polar cap within the next decade.


October 24
The Deep Space 1 (DS1) mission launches. The fist mission of NASA’s New Millennium program, the primary goal of DS1 is the testing of technologies to lower the cost and risk of future missions, with the secondary goals of conducting flybys of the asteroid Braille and of Comet Borrelly.


October 29
Thirty-six years after his history-making flight onboard Friendship 7 in 1962, 77-year-old veteran astronaut John Glenn return to spaceflight on space shuttle mission STS-95.


November 20
Assembly of the International Space Station (ISS) begins. ISS, a research facility assembled in space, is a joint project among the space agencies of the United States, Russia, Japan, Canada, and 11 European countries, and upon completion will be the most expensive object ever built by humankind.



Traces of Catastrophe, written by Bevan French, is published by the Lunar and Planetary Institute. Written for geoscientists of all kinds, the book provides a detailed introduction and overview of impact processes, crater formation, and shock metamorphism.


December 1–3
The conference on Origin of the Earth and Moon is held in Monterey, California. Co-sponsored by the LPI, Geochemical Society, and NASA, the conference is convened by Alex Halliday and Michael Drake, and results in the collaborative publishing agreement between the LPI and the University of Arizona Press for production of the Space Science Series volumes.