For Release: April 10, 2000

        Attention: Early Morning
              Thursday, April 13
                   6-10 a.m. EDT
        10 Minute Windows--With B-Roll

 Scientists look to crystals grown in space
 to help reduce dependency on petroleum
 and leap frog to fuel of the future

      The potential: More gasoline out of a barrel of oil or transition to a
      cleaner, cheaper, abundant fuel -- hydrogen -- to power vehicles,
      heat buildings or generate electricity.
      Zeolite crystals could reduce the cost and pollution associated
      with petroleum production.
      Zeolites are used in catalytic converters, kitty litter, water filters
      and laundry detergents.
      Their big pores absorb chemicals like a sponge -- without
      changing their crystal structure.
      Zeolites have been grown on three Space Shuttle missions, and
      more research is needed.
      Scientists may get much bigger crystals in the microgravity of
      space and increase their understanding of zeolite structure,
      possibly expanding their use on Earth.
      NASA’s Space Product Development Program encourages
      industry to use microgravity to create new products or improve
      existing ones.
      Interview a former astronaut who grew zeolites in space and who
      leads this research.

                                Dr. Al Sacco Jr.
                                Director, Center for Advanced
                                Materials Processing,
                                Northeastern University, Boston,
 Satellite Windows:
                                10 minutes
 Satellite Coordinates:
                                GE-2, Transponder 9C,
                                85 degrees west longitude,
                                Frequency: 3880 MHz, audio: 6.8
 Satellite Interview Information:
 Lindsey Rawl, Producer
 (256) 544-2228
 Beeper (256) 544-1183 PIN 0025
                                Story Information:
                                Steve Roy, Media Relations
                                (256) 544-0034