01/17/2012 04:37 EST | Updated 03/18/2012 05:12 EDT

YouTube SpaceLab Contest: Canadian Teams Still In The Running

TORONTO - Four Canadian teams are still in the running in a Google-run contest that's encouraging young students to dream up experiments to be performed in space.

Students in two age groups, 14 to 16 and 17 to 18, are competing for a number of prizes, including a chance to undergo real astronaut training in Star City, Russia, where Russian cosmonauts are schooled.

The two winning experiments will also be conducted about 400 kilometres above Earth aboard the International Space Station and streamed live on YouTube.

Projects designed by Katie Gwozdecky from Ottawa, Michael De Lazzari and Jenny Zhang from Vancouver, Habeeb Ahmed and Annas Khan from Waterloo, Ont., and Jesse Bettencourt, Alexandra Kasper and Mackenzie Richardson from Hamilton were among 60 selected from more than 2,000 entries.

In February, six regional winners will be announced and awarded a trip to Washington, D.C. in March, where they'll get to experience a Zero-G flight simulating a weightless environment.

Cirque du Soleil founder Guy Laliberte and Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield are among the judges of the contest.