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RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Next, we report on one small text for man, one giant leap for text messaging.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Some young scientists were paying close attention to a rocket bound for space last night. The control center at NASA's Wallops flight facility in Virginia did the countdown.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Five, four, three, two, one.

MONTAGNE: The successful launch from Virginia's Atlantic coast was visible in the night sky, up and down the Eastern Seaboard. And as NASA flight control explained, the rocket carried a special cargo.

The launch tonight will be carrying several payloads that are developed by university students from across the country, and the first high school-built satellite coming from Thomas Jefferson High School in Alexandria, Virginia.

INSKEEP: That's right: a satellite built by Virginia high school students. It's a cubed-shaped device, we're told, and it's going to communicate in a way that many a teenager will find normal: text messages. The satellite is designed to receive text messages from Earth, turn them into voice signals, and transmit them back to Earth by radio.

Just remember guys: Your parents may be listening.

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