Press Release


Can You Play Sports … In Space?

Red Knight partners with Challenger Center, former NFL pro Ken Harvey and Richard Garriott with new interactive game for students.


JUNE 17, 2008


Alexandria, VA. and Richardson, TX – What happens when you block an opponent on Mars, leap for a reception on the Moon, or throw a tight spiral on the space station? Students will soon be able to test and predict the physics of these sports moves in space. Red Knight Learning Systems, based in Dallas, Texas and the Challenger Center for Space Science Education are teaming up to provide a fun interactive learning game to support Richard Garriott’s upcoming trip to the International Space Station (ISS). Garriott will be America’s first second-generation astronaut; his father, Owen Garriott, is a former NASA astronaut who flew on the Skylab in the 1970s. Richard is scheduled to fly to the ISS this October and during his 10-day trip he will conduct a number of educational activities, several of which will demonstrate sports moves in the zero-g environment of space.


The web-based educational game will challenge students to try out these three basic football actions in the 1G environment of Earth, the 1/3 gravity of Mars, and the 1/6 gravity of the Moon, then have them predict what will happen in zero-g. Richard will videotape his results for posting on Challenger Center’s web site, along with a new version of the game that will include the zero-g moves. The game will feature Richard as the main player with former 4 time pro bowler and NFL linebacker Ken Harvey, as they demonstrate how football actions in space, such as throwing, jumping, and blocking occur. To help students predict how these sports moves will work in space please visit where you can view Ken Harvey demonstrating the physics of these actions on earth.


“We are enthusiastic supporters of space science education and games, so what better partners could we ask for than the Challenger Center and Richard Garriott?” stated John Purdy, president of Red Knight Learning Systems. Red Knight is providing visual design, game design, physics and game programming, and is collaborating with the Challenger Center on the learning design. Challenger Center will host the game and videos on the web for access by teachers and students by September 2008.


The Challenger Center for Space Science Education was founded in 1986 by the families of the astronauts of the space shuttle Challenger 51-L mission. 50 Challenger Learning Centers across the U.S. reach more than 25,000 teachers and engage 300,000 students each year. To learn more about Challenger Center for Space Science Education, visit:


Red Knight creates innovative learning solutions. Their focus is on helping people learn through highly immersive and interactive games, simulations, and explorations. For more information about Serious Games, Immersive Learning Simulations, Virtual Learning Worlds,  Digital Exhibits, and Video Learning, please visit


Shannon Rush, Development and Communications Associate Challenger Center for Space Science Education, Alexandria, Va.
(703) 683-9740;

John A. Purdy, President
Red Knight Learning Systems
(972) 424-7557;

If you are a member of the media and would like to request an interview with Ken Harvey, please contact Allen Herbert, JAKA Consulting Group
(703) 307-4709;

If you are a member of the media and would like to request an interview with Richard Garriott, please contact:
Stacey Tearne, Space Adventures
(703) 894 2192;