Christa McAuliffe

New Hampshire's U.S. senators have introduced a bill for the creation of a coin in recognition of the 30th anniversary of the space shuttle Challenger disaster and honoring Christa McAuliffe, who was picked to be the first teacher in space.

Proceeds from the sale of the coins would support FIRST programs that inspire young people to pursue opportunities in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. The program is founded by inventor Dean Kamen.

NASA

It's our Sky Guys: the hunt for 'planet nine' continues, with evidence of a huge, but unseen mass beyond Pluto. The mars rover Opportunity celebrates its twelfth birthday, exploring the red planet long beyond expectations.  And this week, it's your best chance to see Mercury, Venus, Saturn, Mars, and Jupiter lined up across the early morning sky.

Thursday marks 30 years since the break-up of the space shuttle Challenger, which claimed the life of Concord High School teacher Christa McAuliffe.

She was among the seven crew members on board who were killed.

McAuliffe had been selected from more than 11,000 applicants to be the first participant in the NASA Teacher in Space Project.

Jim Van Dongen was news director for New Hampshire Public Radio at the time, filing reports from Cape Canaveral for the station.

He now works as an adjunct professor of English at New Hampshire Technical Institute.