ISS Golf Shot Awaits NASA Approval
by Brad Bartz
Toronto, Canada (SPX) Apr 13, 2006
Element 21 Golf Company said Wednesday although it continues to receive media attention for its proposed “Golf Shot around the World,” NASA has not yet given its approval for one of the Russian crew members aboard the International Space Station to hit an E21 golf ball this fall using one of the company’s patented clubs.
E21 said the story has circulated in hundreds of articles appearing in the United States, Canada, the European Union, Russia, South Africa, Australia, Japan and other places.
The company said in a statement that its feasibility studies have shown the proposed golf shot would pose no risk to the station, and Roscosmos, the Russian space agency - which is proposing to execute the shot for a commercial fee - has confirmed its safety. The parties are now awaiting an assessment by NASA engineers.
“Hopefully, Golf Shot in Space will become what it was intended for, and will be easy to relate to, yet sophisticated enough to light up the imagination of millions of golfers in an entertaining and positive way,” said Nataliya Hearn, E21’s president and chief executive officer.
“Our technology platform and this one golfing event may give our customer base a point of reference and a point of difference through a very powerful, yet understandable image.”
E21’s plan is to mark the 35th anniversary of the first golf shot in space - by Apollo 14 Alan B. Shepard Jr., who took a swing from the lunar surface in 1971 - by lofting a ball into low-Earth orbit.
If its stunt succeeds, the company said, “just about every single record for distance in the golf industry will be shattered.”
The alloy used in E21 clubs also is used aboard the station for its high strength and fatigue resistance, the company said.