Cadets from the U.S. Air Force Academy will have an opportunity this week to hear from a NASA astronaut aboard the International Space Station. The Earth-to-space call will air live at 11:05 a.m. EST Wednesday, Jan. 12, on NASA Television, the NASA app, and the agency’s website.

NASA astronaut Raja Chari will answer prerecorded video questions from academy cadets working to become officers and leaders in the U.S. Air Force and the U.S. Space Force. Chari graduated from the academy in 1999 with bachelor’s degrees in astronautical engineering and engineering science.

The event will be held virtually. Media interested in covering it should contact Dean Miller at 719-333-7647 or 719-238-0264, or email at

Linking students directly to astronauts aboard the space station provides unique, authentic experiences designed to enhance student learning, performance, and interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Astronauts living in space aboard the orbiting laboratory communicate with NASA’s Mission Control Center in Houston 24 hours a day through the Space Network’s Tracking and Data Relay Satellites.

For more than 21 years, astronauts have continuously lived and worked aboard the space station, testing technologies, performing science, and developing the skills needed to explore farther from Earth. Through Artemis, the agency will send astronauts to the Moon to prepare for future human exploration of Mars. Inspiring the next generation of explorers – the Artemis Generation – ensures America will continue to lead in space exploration and discovery.

See videos and lesson plans highlighting research on the International Space Station at: