Astronaut Fincke calls on NE youths to dream big

  NASA astronaut Edward Michael Mike Fincke, left, is decorated with Assamese traditional souvenirs - Japi (cap) and Sarai. His Assamese wife Renita Saikia looks on.AP

The NASA astronaut, who is also Assam's 'jowain' or son-in-law hail from the state, was speaking at a function organised to felicitate him here yesterday.

"If you have a dream , work on it. Have the desire to show that if we work in a planned and coordinated manner we can accomplish what we want to do," he said.
The astronaut said that nothing is impossible.

"When I was a young child, I dreamt of going to space. I was the eldest of nine children, it was not easy to achieve my dreams but with my parents support and my hard work I succeeded to go to space -- not once but twice," said Fincke, whose wife Renita Saikia is also an engineer with NASA.

Fincke was the commander for Expedition 18 and had talked live to students of the North East while aboard the ISS in January about his experiences in space.
"I have come here to continue my conversation with the student community of the region, to share my experiences with the people - especially the young so that they can have big dreams," he said.
Prior to his felicitation by Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi at the function organised by a non-voluntary organisation Friends of Assam and Seven Sisters, a film was shown highlighting Fincke's experiences aboard the ISS.

Fincke, who has been selected by NASA to go to space for the third time in 2010 as mission specialist, said the ISS is a major aerospace endeavour and is the largest and most complex international scientific project in history.
It is a research facility being assembled in outer space by the scientific and technological resources of 16 countries led by the US to maintain a long term human presence in outer space.
After 10 years and USD 100 billion, the ISS is now poised to become a top research laboratory.
When completed in 2010, it will weigh over 800,000 pounds, measure 356 feet across and 290 feet long with the inside volume of the orbiting laboratory larger than a four-bedroom house and have a crew of six, he said.
It provides a special microgravity and radiation environment that Earth-based laboratories cannot replicate.
Research in the station's six state-of-the-art laboratories would lead to discoveries in medicine, materials and fundamental science, space exploration and developments that could enhance many industries on earth, he added.

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