NASA Artifacts Land At Clovis North High School

Clovis North High School gets a piece of{}NASA history. {} Artifacts from the space shuttle landed Friday. {}{}

"It's crazy but it's here today. {} It's surreal."{} Cliff Nitschke has waited three and a half years for his{}NASA moment.{} He got the idea to write{}NASA and ask for hardware from space after learning the shuttle program was coming to an end. {}

He decided to name drop.{}{}"I used our local connection of commander Rick Husband who went to Fresno State as sort of motivation and also to help us get the grant. {} And they started approving us for items."

Items like a million dollar robotic arm, used to retrieve satellites. {} There's also a tool box used to work on the Hubble telescope.{} "Take off the cover and put it over there and see what a $750-thousand dollar space refrigerator freezer looks like."

Students at Clovis North High School were impressed with the hardware large and small.{} "It's so cool. {} I'm trying to picture it in space. {} It's almost unreal just to see oh my gosh that was in space," said Senior Morgan Larson.

Clovis North{}was competing against Boeing, the National Air and Space Museum and other air museums for{}NASA artifacts. {} Teacher Cliff Nitschke{}believes Clovis North is one of few high schools in the country to receive items.{}{}

There's an unusual brand on every item that's been in space.{}{}{}Nitschke says each item has a burnt smell.{} "If you smell the robotic arm you get that smell of space. {} How many kids and how many people will get to smell what space smell is like."

Nitschke's next goal is to create a first class air and space research center on campus.{} He wants students from Central California to be able to get their own snap shot of space shuttle history.{}

Clovis North is expecting a second shipment of space shuttle hardware next week.