Aerospace Education-Related Activities


Aerospace Education Excellence Program (AEX)
Aerospace Excellence Textbook
Have you ever been sitting around pondering the way Goddard came up with a rocket? What about how an airplane flies? Well, we have just the thing for you!

The Civil Air Patrol is offering a very popular program free to its members that involves doing hands-on aviation and space-related activities. It is called AEX, and the acronym stands for “Aerospace Education EXcellence.”

Participants receive full-color books that feature national standards-based aerospace hands-on activities (one set of books per squadron). The requirements are simple: complete six aerospace activities and one two-hour or longer field experience (space day, trip to the airport or museum, etc.) to earn a beautiful wooden instructor plaque plus color certificates for your students. The activities are designed to fit into any curriculum. Schools’ state-approved curriculum may replace or supplement the AEX activities created for this program. (Lesson plans for supplemental activities need to be attached to final reporting form.) All of the projects featured in AEX I (Volumes 1 and 2) (grades K-5) or AEX II (Volumes 1 and 2) (grades 6-12) are very “teacher-friendly” and involve readily available, low-cost materials.

To register: Go to eServices at Click on “AEX” in the right column under the heading “My Favorites.” Then, click “Apply for AEX” in the left column.

Model Rocketry (MR)

CAP’s Model Rocketry program is an achievement program for cadets interested in the science, technology, and flight of model rockets. The guide (available below) builds on the foundation of Aerospace Dimensions, Module 4 Rockets, to introduce cadets to the hobby and science of model rocketry. The guide begins with simple alternative-power models and progressively challenges cadets with more advanced models.

Cadets who complete the written and performance requirements for each of the 3 stages, as certified by their unit commander, will be awarded the Cadet Model Rocketry Badge. For more details about the requirements for the model rocketry badge, go to CAPR 50-20.

Satellite Tool Kit (STK)

Satellite Tool Kit
The CAP-STK Aerospace Education Program is designed to educate cadets and seniors on the exciting aspects of satellites, satellite orbits, the types and locations of orbits, and satellite missions using Analytical Graphics Incorporated (AGI) state of the art computer application, Satellite ToolKit (STK). STK is the same software that space companies use to determine where to place satellites on orbit and to find their satellites once launched.

Satellites and their missions play a critical part in our everyday lives. Everything we do somehow is now connected to satellites in space. We use satellites to communicate, conduct banking transactions, tell the time, navigate our way around a city – or the country for that matter, forecast the weather, protect our national security, create precise maps, examine the oceans, analyze the sun, map the galaxy, the list is practically endless! The more we know about how satellites work and the environment they operate in, the better we will be in determining additional ways we can use these unique assets in the future. STK will excite cadets about space and space operations, and should motivate them want to learn more about this critical part of our infrastructure.

Cadets and seniors will be educated on, and come to understand these important aspects of space and satellite operations using STK:

— Orbital mechanics and the six orbital (Keplerian) elements used to find or place a satellite in orbit.
— The altitudes satellites operate in and the missions satellites perform at those altitudes.
— Linking different segments of a space system together and how we communicate with and operate spacecraft from the ground.
— Creating satellite constellations.
— Launching rockets into space and have them join up with orbiting spacecraft
— Determining when a satellite will overfly your location
— Linking ground, airborne, and space segments together, and creating linkages around the world.

Introduction to Robotics

Our AE Team has launched a new STEM related program that provides beginning robotics activities that are low-cost and high-interest. The activities progress into challenges that will require more resources and ingenuity to perform.

The Introduction to Robotics can be found in eServices with the other AE resources and there is a description on the Aerospace Education Excellence page.

Introduction to building and understanding robotics; 21 lessons that start with basic, easy activities and progress into increasingly more difficult lessons, great for cadets and seniors!

Model Aircraft Remote Control (MARC)

This program promotes and supports aviation as an educational tool and focuses on providing model aviation education opportunities and hands-on experiences for CAP cadet, senior, and teacher members. This introduction page begins a journey to a more comprehensive understanding of building and flying all types of flying and model aircraft. These aircraft include anything that is Free Flight (FF), such as Hand Launched Gliders (HLG) or Catapult Launched Gliders (CLG), and it also includes any powered aircraft (rubber band, electric, or gas) and remote control (RC) flight.


To establish a viable and effective model airplane program that will assist unit Aerospace Education Officers (AEOs) in promoting an interest in flight and model aviation. This program will offer a myriad of opportunities and activities designed to excite and motivate CAP members to learn more about flying and model aviation.


1. Nurture the partnership with The Academy of Model Aeronautics (AMA) to share CAP and AMA ideas and resources.
2. Present AEOs with a unit model aircraft program to encourage CAP senior members and cadets to experience building, learning and doing something together.
3. Promote model aviation as a worthwhile interest and hobby.
4. Develop a model airplane knowledge database for CAP membership.
5. Develop a parent/guardian and cadet project program.
6. Cooperate with other organizations to expand model aviation.
7. Reinforce Aerospace Dimensions and Aerospace Education Excellence Award programs.


The Virginia Department of Aviation is a state transportation agency whose mission is to cultivate an advanced aviation system that is safe, secure, and provides for economic development; promotes aviation awareness and education; and provides executive flight services for the Commonwealth leadership. Their website contains information about Virginia Airports, Communications, Education and a Calendar of events. Their link is:

The Virginia Aeronautical Historical Society’s mission is to prepare, collect, and preserve documents, aircraft, aerospace vehicles, and other items which relate to the history of aviation and aerospace in Virginia, from its beginning to the present and educate the public on Virginia’s history of aviation. Their link is:

There are several exciting aviation related museums in the Commonwealth:

Virginia Air & Space Center located in Hampton, VA

Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center (National Air and Space Museum)located in Chantilly, VA

Military Aviation Museum located in Virginia Beach, VA

Virginia Aviation Colleges

Virginia Aviation Ambassadors Program

Virginia Aviation Ambassadors

Visit your local public-use airport and request a Virginia Aviation Ambassador’s Program passport.

Each time you visit a Virginia public-use airport, aviation museum, or safety seminar, have your passport stamped in the appropriate block. The airport fixed-base operator will have the appropriate stamp. It is always wise to call before visiting, to ensure that someone will be there to stamp your passport.

As you plan your trips, keep in mind that you need to visit at least one airport from each of Virginia’s seven airport regions. Fill in the page at the front of your passport with the name of the airports and when you’re done sign at the bottom.

When you have received the proper number of stamps entitling you to a bronze, silver, or gold level award, submit your completed passport to the Virginia Department of Aviation.