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AIAA Statement on Design/Build/Launch Student Experiments Onboard Successful Blue Origin New Shepard Mission


December 19, 2023 – Reston, Va. – The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) issued the following statement from AIAA CEO Dan Dumbacher:

“Congratulations to the Blue Origin team on today’s successful return to flight for their New Shepard rocket. AIAA recognizes the countless industry professionals who support New Shepard. We applaud AIAA Corporate Member Blue Origin for its perseverance in addressing the findings from the NS-23 mission mishap to achieve this successful mission today.

We are thrilled that two AIAA-sponsored student experiments were conducted during today’s New Shepard flight. The two experiments are winners of the Design/Build/Launch (DBL) competition sponsored by AIAA and Blue Origin:

  • Improving Fluid Management Through A Novel Microgravity Slosh Mitigation Technique by Eleanor Sigrest, graduate and valedictorian of a dual program at Forest Park High School in Woodbridge, Virginia, and the Governor’s School at Innovation Park, Manassas, Virginia
  • Acoustic Levitation Under Variable G by Puneeth Bheesetty, Anna Porter Puckett, and Jaden Shawyer, graduates ofGranby High School, Norfolk, Virginia

The DBL program is targeted to high school students, giving them an opportunity to develop creative research proposals for experimental payloads designed to study short-duration microgravity effects. The winners received $1,000 grants to prepare their work for flight onboard New Shepard.

We are excited to witness these students conducting their microgravity experiments and we can’t wait to hear more about their results. Their enthusiasm and passion inspire us as we anticipate their remarkable career journeys toward shaping the future of aerospace.”

AIAA Media Contact: Rebecca B. Gray,, 804-397-5270 cell

About AIAA
The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) is the world’s largest aerospace technical society. With nearly 30,000 individual members from 91 countries, and 100 corporate members, AIAA brings together industry, academia, and government to advance engineering and science in aviation, space, and defense. For more information, visit, or follow AIAA on TwitterFacebook, or LinkedIn.

Banner photo: Blue Origin’s New Shepard rocket launches from its spaceport near Van Horn, Texas, Tuesday, 19 December 2023. | Credit: Blue Origin; video framegrab


Blue Origin New Shepard Mission Launch 19 Dec. 2023

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