NASA and Peanuts Worldwide to Collaborate on Deep Space Learning Activities

Headed for the launch pad, Apollo 10 Commander Tom Stafford pats the nose of a stuffed Snoopy held by Jamye Flowers (Coplin), astronaut Gordon Cooper’s secretary. (Credit: NASA)

HOUSTON (NASA PR) — NASA and Peanuts Worldwide are joining forces to collaborate on educational activities that share the excitement of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) with the next generation of explorers and thinkers. The collaboration, formalized though a Space Act Agreement, provides an opportunity to update the Snoopy character by Charles M. Schulz, for space-themed programming with content about NASA’s deep space exploration missions, 50 years after its initial collaboration began during the Apollo era.

The agency’s Silver Snoopy award is given by NASA astronauts to employees and contractors for outstanding achievements related to human flight safety or mission success. (Credit: NASA)

“NASA’s venturing to the Moon and beyond with new missions that will push humanity’s reach farther into deep space,” said Mark Geyer, director of NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston, who signed the agreement on the agency’s behalf. “Engaging the public and sharing what we’re doing through partnerships with organizations that have a unique way of reaching people helps generate interest and curiosity about space in the next generation.”

With NASA’s involvement, Peanuts will work on content for Astronaut Snoopy, including a STEM-based curriculum for students about America’s deep space exploration objectives and interactive ways to celebrate next year’s 50th anniversary of humans first setting foot on the Moon. Peanuts will begin sharing its updated space-themed activities at the Comic-Con International: San Diego conference in July.

NASA has shared a proud association with Charles M. Schulz and his American icon Snoopy since Apollo missions began in the 1960s. Schulz created comic strips depicting Snoopy on the Moon, capturing public excitement about America’s achievements in space. In May 1969, Apollo 10 astronauts traveled to the Moon for a final checkout before lunar landings on later missions. Because the mission required the lunar module to skim the Moon’s surface to within 50,000 feet and “snoop around” scouting the Apollo 11 landing site, the crew named the lunar module Snoopy. The command module was named Charlie Brown, Snoopy’s loyal owner.

The agency’s Silver Snoopy award is given by NASA astronauts to employees and contractors for outstanding achievements related to human flight safety or mission success. Receiving one is regarded as a high honor for outstanding performance.

Astronaut Tom Stafford, wearing his spacesuit, is being shown a pennant bearing Snoopy. The Apollo 10 Lunar Module was named Snoopy and the command module was named Charlie Brown. (Credit: NASA)

NASA is leading the next steps of human exploration into deep space where astronauts will build and begin testing the systems near the Moon needed for lunar surface missions and exploration to other destinations farther from Earth, including Mars. Exploration Mission-1 will be the first integrated test of NASA’s deep space exploration systems: the Orion spacecraft, Space Launch System (SLS) rocket and the ground systems at Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida. The first in a series of increasingly complex missions, Exploration Mission-1 will be an uncrewed flight test that will provide a foundation for subsequent missions with crew, and demonstrate our commitment and capability to extend human existence to the Moon and beyond.

  • echos of the mt’s

    If I recall correctly… After Apollo 9’s “Spider & Gumdrop” and 10’s “Charlie Brown & Snoopy” NASA caught flak from politicians over the names so they took a little control over the naming.

  • Paul451


    Apollo 9: Gumdrop and Spider
    Apollo 10: Charlie Brown and Snoopy
    Apollo 11: Columbia and Eagle
    Apollo 12: Yankee Clipper and Intrepid
    Apollo 13: Odyssey and Aquarius
    Apollo 14: Kitty Hawk and Antares
    Apollo 15: Endeavor and Falcon
    Apollo 16: Casper and Orion
    Apollo 17: America and Challenger

    Yeah, that went downhill real fast.

    “We, who vote on your existence, are concerned at the lack of seriousness in the vehicle names…”
    “Eagle! Yankee! America! (and a bunch of Aircraft Carriers!)”

  • echos of the mt’s

    I won’t say it went downhill but it was a bit less fun. I love the story about Gemini 3 and how Grissom wanted to name it ‘Molly Brown’. When they refused to let him, he said he would name it ‘Titanic’. After that, astronauts could no longer name their ships.

  • Michael Halpern

    I wonder if SpaceX will name crew dragons,