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Two Canyons District science teachers will be flying high with NASA

NASA's SOFIA observatory (NASA)

SALT LAKE CITY– Two Utah teachers are boarding a flight to see space with NASA soon. Science teachers Clief Castleton from Hillcrest High School and Milo Maughan from Corner Canyon are among 30 teachers selected as NASA Airborne Astronomy Ambassadors.

Sometime during the coming school year, they’ll be flying aboard NASA’s SOFIA airborne observatory, a modified 747 with a 100-inch telescope on board.

Castleton says students will be able to participate in the flights virtually.

“While I’m on the aircraft, my students will be able to watch what I’m doing, which is really cool,” Castleton said. “Then once I get back, NASA has a curriculum that they’ve developed.”

Maughan hopes the students will get excited about their adventure. “It’s gonna make a big difference because it will make it real for them,” said Maughan. “Not just something the teacher’s spouting out. It’s something the teacher has actual experience in.”

The SOFIA observatory specializes in infrared astronomy. Its discoveries include verifying the presence of water on the moon.

Related: NASA rover lands on Mars to look for signs of ancient life