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Sample records for nasa astrobiology institute

  1. Assessment of the NASA Astrobiology Institute

    Science.gov (United States)

    2008-01-01

    Astrobiology is a scientific discipline devoted to the study of life in the universe--its origins, evolution, distribution, and future. It brings together the physical and biological sciences to address some of the most fundamental questions of the natural world: How do living systems emerge? How do habitable worlds form and how do they evolve? Does life exist on worlds other than Earth? As an endeavor of tremendous breadth and depth, astrobiology requires interdisciplinary investigation in order to be fully appreciated and examined. As part of a concerted effort to undertake such a challenge, the NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI) was established in 1998 as an innovative way to develop the field of astrobiology and provide a scientific framework for flight missions. Now that the NAI has been in existence for almost a decade, the time is ripe to assess its achievements. At the request of NASA's Associate Administrator for the Science Mission Directorate (SMD), the Committee on the Review of the NASA Astrobiology Institute undertook the assignment to determine the progress made by the NAI in developing the field of astrobiology. It must be emphasized that the purpose of this study was not to undertake a review of the scientific accomplishments of NASA's Astrobiology program, in general, or of the NAI, in particular. Rather, the objective of the study is to evaluate the success of the NAI in achieving its stated goals of: 1. Conducting, supporting, and catalyzing collaborative interdisciplinary research; 2. Training the next generation of astrobiology researchers; 3. Providing scientific and technical leadership on astrobiology investigations for current and future space missions; 4. Exploring new approaches, using modern information technology, to conduct interdisciplinary and collaborative research among widely distributed investigators; and 5. Supporting outreach by providing scientific content for use in K-12 education programs, teaching undergraduate classes, and

  2. The NASA Astrobiology Institute: early history and organization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blumberg, Baruch S.

    2003-01-01

    The NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI) was established as a means to advance the field of astrobiology by providing a multidisciplinary, multi-institution, science-directed program, executed by universities, research institutes, and NASA and other government laboratories. The scientific community and NASA defined the science content at several workshops as summarized in the NASA Astrobiology Roadmap. Teams were chosen nationwide, following the recommendations of external review groups, and the research program began in 1998. There are now 16 national Teams and five international affiliated and associated astrobiology institutions. The NAI has attracted an outstanding group of scientific groups and individuals. The Institute facilitates the involvement of the scientists in its scientific and management vision. Its goal is to support basic research and allow the scientists the freedom to select their projects and alter them as indicated by new research. Additional missions include the education of the public, the involvement of students who will be the astrobiologists of future generations, and the development of a culture of collaboration in NAI, a "virtual institute," spread across many sites nationally and internationally.

  3. The NASA Astrobiology Roadmap.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Des Marais, David J; Nuth, Joseph A; Allamandola, Louis J; Boss, Alan P; Farmer, Jack D; Hoehler, Tori M; Jakosky, Bruce M; Meadows, Victoria S; Pohorille, Andrew; Runnegar, Bruce; Spormann, Alfred M

    2008-08-01

    The NASA Astrobiology Roadmap provides guidance for research and technology development across the NASA enterprises that encompass the space, Earth, and biological sciences. The ongoing development of astrobiology roadmaps embodies the contributions of diverse scientists and technologists from government, universities, and private institutions. The Roadmap addresses three basic questions: how does life begin and evolve, does life exist elsewhere in the universe, and what is the future of life on Earth and beyond? Seven Science Goals outline the following key domains of investigation: understanding the nature and distribution of habitable environments in the universe, exploring for habitable environments and life in our own Solar System, understanding the emergence of life, determining how early life on Earth interacted and evolved with its changing environment, understanding the evolutionary mechanisms and environmental limits of life, determining the principles that will shape life in the future, and recognizing signatures of life on other worlds and on early Earth. For each of these goals, Science Objectives outline more specific high priority efforts for the next three to five years. These eighteen objectives are being integrated with NASA strategic planning.

  4. The NASA Astrobiology Roadmap

    Science.gov (United States)

    Des Marais, David J.; Allamandola, Louis J.; Benner, Steven A.; Boss, Alan P.; Deamer, David; Falkowski, Paul G.; Farmer, Jack D.; Hedges, S. Blair; Jakosky, Bruce M.; Knoll, Andrew H.; hide

    2003-01-01

    The NASA Astrobiology Roadmap provides guidance for research and technology development across the NASA enterprises that encompass the space, Earth, and biological sciences. The ongoing development of astrobiology roadmaps embodies the contributions of diverse scientists and technologists from government, universities, and private institutions. The Roadmap addresses three basic questions: How does life begin and evolve, does life exist elsewhere in the universe, and what is the future of life on Earth and beyond? Seven Science Goals outline the following key domains of investigation: understanding the nature and distribution of habitable environments in the universe, exploring for habitable environments and life in our own solar system, understanding the emergence of life, determining how early life on Earth interacted and evolved with its changing environment, understanding the evolutionary mechanisms and environmental limits of life, determining the principles that will shape life in the future, and recognizing signatures of life on other worlds and on early Earth. For each of these goals, Science Objectives outline more specific high-priority efforts for the next 3-5 years. These 18 objectives are being integrated with NASA strategic planning.

  5. Report on a NASA astrobiology institute-funded workshop without walls: stellar stoichiometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desch, Steven J; Young, Patrick A; Anbar, Ariel D; Hinkel, Natalie; Pagano, Michael; Truitt, Amanda; Turnbull, Margaret

    2014-04-01

    We report on the NASA Astrobiology Institute-funded Workshop Without Walls entitled "Stellar Stoichiometry," hosted by the "Follow the Elements" team at Arizona State University in April 2013. We describe several innovative practices we adopted that made effective use of the Workshop Without Walls videoconferencing format, including use of information technologies, assignment of scientific tasks before the workshop, and placement of graduate students in positions of authority. A companion article will describe the scientific results arising from the workshop. Our intention here is to suggest best practices for future Workshops Without Walls.

  6. The Living Universe: NASA and the Development of Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dick, Steven J.; Strick, James E.

    2004-01-01

    In the opening weeks of 1998 a news article in the British journal Nature reported that NASA was about to enter biology in a big way. A "virtual" Astrobiology Institute was gearing up for business, and NASA administrator Dan Goldin told his external advisory council that he would like to see spending on the new institute eventually reach $100 million per year. "You just wait for the screaming from the physical scientists (when that happens)," Goldin was quoted as saying. Nevertheless, by the time of the second Astrobiology Science Conference in 2002, attended by seven hundred scientists from many disciplines, NASA spending on astrobiology had reached nearly half that amount and was growing at a steady pace. Under NASA leadership numerous institutions around the world applied the latest scientific techniques in the service of astrobiology's ambitious goal: the study of what NASA's 1996 Strategic Plan termed the "living universe." This goal embraced nothing less than an understanding of the origin, history, and distribution of life in the universe, including Earth. Astrobiology, conceived as a broad interdisciplinary research program, held the prospect of being the science for the twenty-first century which would unlock the secrets to some of the great questions of humanity. It is no surprise that these age-old questions should continue into the twenty-first century. But that the effort should be spearheaded by NASA was not at all obvious to those - inside and outside the agency - who thought NASA's mission was human spaceflight, rather than science, especially biological science. NASA had, in fact, been involved for four decades in "exobiology," a field that embraced many of the same questions but which had stagnated after the 1976 Viking missions to Mars. In this volume we tell the colorful story of the rise of the discipline of exobiology, how and why it morphed into astrobiology at the end of the twentieth century, and why NASA was the engine for both the

  7. Second Annual NASA Ames Space Science and Astrobiology Jamboree

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dotson, Jessie

    2014-01-01

    The Space Science and Astrobiology Division's researchers are pursuing investigations in a variety of fields, including exoplanets, planetary science, astrobiology, and astrophysics. In addition division personnel support a wide variety of NASA missions. With a wide variety of interesting research going on, distributed among the three branches in at least 5 buildings, it can be difficult to stay abreast of what one's fellow researchers are doing. Our goal in organizing this symposium is to facilitate communication and collaboration among the scientist within the division and to give center management and other ARC researchers and Engineers an opportunity to see what scientific missions work is being done in the division.

  8. Sixth Annual NASA Ames Space Science and Astrobiology Jamboree

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hollingsworth, Jeffery; Howell, Steve; Fonda, Mark; Dateo, Chris; Martinez, Christine M.

    2018-01-01

    Welcome to the Sixth Annual NASA Ames Research Center, Space Science and Astrobiology Jamboree at NASA Ames Research Center (ARC). The Space Science and Astrobiology Division consists of over 60 Civil Servants, with more than 120 Cooperative Agreement Research Scientists, Post-Doctoral Fellows, Science Support Contractors, Visiting Scientists, and many other Research Associates. Within the Division there is engagement in scientific investigations over a breadth of disciplines including Astrobiology, Astrophysics, Exobiology, Exoplanets, Planetary Systems Science, and many more. The Division's personnel support NASA spacecraft missions (current and planned), including SOFIA, K2, MSL, New Horizons, JWST, WFIRST, and others. Our top-notch science research staff is spread amongst three branches in five buildings at ARC. Naturally, it can thus be difficult to remain abreast of what fellow scientific researchers pursue actively, and then what may present and/or offer regarding inter-Branch, intra-Division future collaborative efforts. In organizing this annual jamboree, the goals are to offer a wholesome, one-venue opportunity to sense the active scientific research and spacecraft mission involvement within the Division; and to facilitate communication and collaboration amongst our research scientists. Annually, the Division honors one senior research scientist with a Pollack Lecture, and one early career research scientist with an Outstanding Early Career Space Scientist Lecture. For the Pollack Lecture, the honor is bestowed upon a senior researcher who has made significant contributions within any area of research aligned with space science and/or astrobiology. This year we are pleased to honor Linda Jahnke. With the Early Career Lecture, the honor is bestowed upon an early-career researcher who has substantially demonstrated great promise for significant contributions within space science, astrobiology, and/or, in support of spacecraft missions addressing such

  9. 3rd Annual NASA Ames Space Science and Astrobiology Jamboree

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dotson, Jessie

    2015-01-01

    The Space Science and Astrobiology Division at NASA Ames Research Center consists of over 50 civil servants and more than 110 contractors, co-­-ops, post-­-docs and associates. Researchers in the division are pursuing investigations in a variety of fields including exoplanets, planetary science, astrobiology and astrophysics. In addition, division personnel support a wide variety of NASA missions including (but not limited to) Kepler, SOFIA, LADEE, JWST, and New Horizons. With such a wide variety of interesting research going on, distributed among three branches in at least 5 different buildings, it can be difficult to stay abreast of what one's fellow researchers are doing. Our goal in organizing this symposium is to facilitate communication and collaboration among the scientists within the division, and to give center management and other ARC researchers and engineers an opportunity to see what scientific research and science mission work is being done in the division. We are also continuing the tradition within the Space Science and Astrobiology Division to honor one senior and one early career scientist with the Pollack Lecture and the Early Career Lecture, respectively. With the Pollack Lecture, our intent is to select a senior researcher who has made significant contributions to any area of research within the space sciences, and we are pleased to honor Dr. William Borucki this year. With the Early Career Lecture, our intent is to select a young researcher within the division who, by their published scientific papers, shows great promise for the future in any area of space science research, and we are pleased to honor Dr. Melinda Kahre this year

  10. A concept for NASA's Mars 2016 astrobiology field laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beegle, Luther W; Wilson, Michael G; Abilleira, Fernando; Jordan, James F; Wilson, Gregory R

    2007-08-01

    The Mars Program Plan includes an integrated and coordinated set of future candidate missions and investigations that meet fundamental science objectives of NASA and the Mars Exploration Program (MEP). At the time this paper was written, these possible future missions are planned in a manner consistent with a projected budget profile for the Mars Program in the next decade (2007-2016). As with all future missions, the funding profile depends on a number of factors that include the exact cost of each mission as well as potential changes to the overall NASA budget. In the current version of the Mars Program Plan, the Astrobiology Field Laboratory (AFL) exists as a candidate project to determine whether there were (or are) habitable zones and life, and how the development of these zones may be related to the overall evolution of the planet. The AFL concept is a surface exploration mission equipped with a major in situ laboratory capable of making significant advancements toward the Mars Program's life-related scientific goals and the overarching Vision for Space Exploration. We have developed several concepts for the AFL that fit within known budget and engineering constraints projected for the 2016 and 2018 Mars mission launch opportunities. The AFL mission architecture proposed here assumes maximum heritage from the 2009 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL). Candidate payload elements for this concept were identified from a set of recommendations put forth by the Astrobiology Field Laboratory Science Steering Group (AFL SSG) in 2004, for the express purpose of identifying overall rover mass and power requirements for such a mission. The conceptual payload includes a Precision Sample Handling and Processing System that would replace and augment the functionality and capabilities provided by the Sample Acquisition Sample Processing and Handling system that is currently part of the 2009 MSL platform.

  11. Astrobiology and Society: Building an Interdisciplinary Research Community

    OpenAIRE

    Race, Margaret; Denning, Kathryn; Bertka, Constance M.; Dick, Steven J.; Harrison, Albert A.; Impey, Christopher; Mancinelli, Rocco

    2012-01-01

    This paper reports recent efforts to gather experts from the humanities and social sciences along with astrobiologists to consider the cultural, societal, and psychological implications of astrobiology research and exploration. We began by convening a workshop to draft a research roadmap on astrobiology's societal implications and later formed a Focus Group on Astrobiology and Society under the auspices of the NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI). Just as the Astrobiology Science Roadmap and var...

  12. NASA Virtual Institutes: International Bridges for Space Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, Gregory K.

    2016-01-01

    NASA created the first virtual institute, the NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI), in 2009 with an aim toward bringing together geographically disparate and multidisciplinary teams toward the goal of answering broad questions in the then-new discipline of astrobiology. With the success of the virtual institute model, NASA then created the NASA Lunar Science Institute (NLSI) in 2008 to address questions of science and human exploration of the Moon, and then the NASA Aeronautics Research Institute (NARI) in 2012 which addresses key questions in the development of aeronautics technologies. With the broadening of NASA's human exploration targets to include Near Earth Asteroids and the moons of Mars as well as the Moon, the NLSI morphed into the Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI) in 2012. SSERVI funds domestic research teams to address broad questions at the intersection of science and human exploration, with the underlying principle that science enables human exploration, and human exploration enables science. Nine domestic teams were funded in 2014 for a five-year period to address a variety of different topics, and nine international partners (with more to come) also work with the U.S. teams on a variety of topics of mutual interest. The result is a robust and productive research infrastructure that is not only scientifically productive but can respond to strategic topics of domestic and international interest, and which develops a new generation of researchers. This is all accomplished with the aid of virtual collaboration technologies which enable scientific research at a distance. The virtual institute model is widely applicable to a range of space science and exploration problems.

  13. NASA-ESA Joint Mission to Explore Two Worlds of Great Astrobiological Interest - Titan and Enceladus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reh, K.; Coustenis, A.; Lunine, J.; Matson, D.; Lebreton, J.-P.; Erd, C.; Beauchamp, P.

    2009-04-01

    Rugged shorelines, laced with canyons, leading to ethane/methane seas glimpsed through an organic haze, vast fields of dunes shaped by alien sciroccos… An icy moon festooned with plumes of water-ice and organics, whose warm watery source might be glimpsed through surface cracks that glow in the infrared… The revelations by Cassini-Huygens about Saturn's crown jewels, Titan and Enceladus, have rocked the public with glimpses of new worlds unimagined a decade before. The time is at hand to capitalize on those discoveries with a broad mission of exploration that combines the widest range of planetary science disciplines—Geology, Geophysics, Atmospheres, Astrobiology,Chemistry, Magnetospheres—in a single NASA/ESA collaboration. The Titan Saturn System Mission will explore these exciting new environments, flying through Enceladus' plumes and plunging deep into Titan's atmosphere with instruments tuned to find what Cassini could only hint at. Exploring Titan with an international fleet of vehicles; from orbit, from the surface of a great polar sea, and from the air with the first hot air balloon to ride an extraterrestrial breeze, TSSM will turn our snapshot gaze of these worlds into an epic film. This paper will describe a collaborative NASA-ESA Titan Saturn System Mission that will open a new phase of planetary exploration by projecting robotic presence on the land, on the sea, and in the air of an active, organic-rich world.

  14. Make Astrobiology Yours

    Science.gov (United States)

    Domagal-Goldman, Shawn

    2012-01-01

    In this talk, I will give the AbGradCon attendees an overview of astrobiology activities ongoing at NASA as well as a brief description of the various funding programs and careers that they can pursue. After this, I will present to them the case that the future of the field is theirs to determine, and give input on how to effectively make astrobiology and NASA responsive to the needs of the community. This presentation will leverage my experiences leading various efforts in the early career astrobiology community, where I have served as a conference organizer, primer lead editor, community blogger, and unofficial liaison to NASA headquarters.

  15. The Astrobiology Field Guide in World Wind

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scalice, D. M.

    2004-12-01

    In collaboration with the Australian Centre for Astrobiology (ACA), and NASA Learning Technologies (NLT), and utilizing the powerful visualization capabilities of their "World Wind" software, the NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI) is crafting a prototype "Astrobiology Field Guide" to bring the field experiences and stories of astrobiology science to the public and classrooms around the world. The prototype focuses on one region in particular - The Pilbara in Western Australia. This first Field Guide "hotspot" is an internationally recognized area hosting the best known example of the earliest evidence of life on Earth - a stromatolitic chert precipitation in the 3.45 Ga Warrawoona Group. The goal of the Astrobiology Field Guide is to engage students of all ages with the ongoing field expeditions of today's astrobiologists as they explore the ends of the Earth searching for clues to life's origin, evolution, and distribution in the Universe. The NAI hopes to expand this Field Guide to include many more astrobiologically relevant areas across the globe such as Cuatro Cienegas in Mexico, the Rio Tinto in Spain, Yellowstone National Park in the US, and the Lost City hydrothermal vent field on the mid-Atlantic ridge - and possibly sites on Mars. To that end, we will be conducting feasibility studies and evaluations with informal and formal education contacts. The Astrobiology Field Guide is also serving as a cornerstone to educational materials being developed focused on the Pilbara region for use in classrooms in Australia, the UK, and potentially the US. These materials are being developed by the Australian Centre for Astrobiology, and the ICT Innovations Centre at Macquarie University in Sydney, in collaboration with the NAI and the Centre for Astronomy and Science Education at the University of Glamorgan in the UK.

  16. Astrobiology and society: building an interdisciplinary research community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Race, Margaret; Denning, Kathryn; Bertka, Constance M; Dick, Steven J; Harrison, Albert A; Impey, Christopher; Mancinelli, Rocco

    2012-10-01

    This paper reports recent efforts to gather experts from the humanities and social sciences along with astrobiologists to consider the cultural, societal, and psychological implications of astrobiology research and exploration. We began by convening a workshop to draft a research roadmap on astrobiology's societal implications and later formed a Focus Group on Astrobiology and Society under the auspices of the NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI). Just as the Astrobiology Science Roadmap and various astrobiology science focus groups have helped researchers orient and understand their work across disciplinary contexts, our intent was to apply the same approach to examine areas beyond the physical and life sciences and expand interdisciplinary interaction and scholarly understanding. These efforts continue as an experiment in progress, with an open invitation to interested researchers-astrobiologists as well as scholars in the humanities and social sciences-to become involved in research, analysis, and proactive discussions concerning the potential impacts of astrobiology on society as well as the possible impacts of society on progress in astrobiology.

  17. Advanced Curation Activities at NASA: Implications for Astrobiological Studies of Future Sample Collections

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCubbin, F. M.; Evans, C. A.; Fries, M. D.; Harrington, A. D.; Regberg, A. B.; Snead, C. J.; Zeigler, R. A.

    2017-01-01

    The Astromaterials Acquisition and Curation Office (henceforth referred to herein as NASA Curation Office) at NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC) is responsible for curating all of NASA's extraterrestrial samples. Under the governing document, NASA Policy Directive (NPD) 7100.10F JSC is charged with curation of all extraterrestrial material under NASA control, including future NASA missions. The Directive goes on to define Curation as including documentation, preservation, preparation, and distribution of samples for re-search, education, and public outreach. Here we briefly describe NASA's astromaterials collections and our ongoing efforts related to enhancing the utility of our current collections as well as our efforts to prepare for future sample return missions. We collectively refer to these efforts as advanced curation.

  18. Educational Outreach for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kadooka, M.; Meech, K.

    2009-12-01

    Astrobiology, the search for life in the universe, has fascinating research areas that can excite students and teachers about science. Its integrative nature, relating to astronomy, geology, oceanography, physics, and chemistry, can be used to encourage students to pursue physical sciences careers. Since 2004, the University of Hawaii NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI) team scientists have shared their research with secondary teachers at our ALI’I national teacher program to promote the inclusion of astrobiology topics into science courses. Since 2007, our NAI team has co-sponsored the HI STAR program for Hawaii’s middle and high school students to work on authentic astronomy research projects and to be mentored by astronomers. The students get images of asteroids, comets, stars, and extrasolar planets from the Faulkes Telescope North located at Haleakala Observatories on the island of Maui and owned by Las Cumbres Observatory Global Telescope network. They also do real time observing with DeKalb Observatory telescope personally owned by Donn Starkey who willing allows any student access to his telescope. Student project results include awards at the Hawaii State Science Fair and the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair. We believe that research experience stimulates these students to select STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) majors upon entering college so a longitudinal study is being done. Plans are underway with California and Hawaii ALI’I teachers cooperating on a joint astronomy classroom project. International collaborations with Brazil, Portugal, and Italy astronomers have begun. We envision joint project between hemispheres and crossing time zones. The establishment of networking teachers, astronomers, students and educator liaisons will be discussed.

  19. Astrobiology and Microbial Diversity Websites at MBL

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bahr, M.; Bordenstein, S. R.

    2006-12-01

    The NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI) mission is to study the origin, evolution and future of life in the Universe. The MBL Astrobiology team explores the evolution and interaction of genomes of diverse organisms that play significant roles in environmental biology over evolutionary time scales. Communication about our research includes the personal contact of teacher workshops, and the development of web-based resources. Microbial Life Educational Resources (MLER) provides an expanding internet resource about the ecology, diversity and evolution for students, K-12 teachers, university faculty, and the general public. MLER includes websites, PowerPoint presentations, teaching activities, data sets, and other useful materials for creating or enhancing courses related to astrobiology. Our second site, micro*scope (http://microscope.mbl.edu), has images of microbes, classification schemes, descriptions of organisms, talks and other educational resources to improve awareness of the biodiversity of our microbial partners.

  20. The Astrobiology in Secondary Classrooms (ASC) curriculum: focusing upon diverse students and teachers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arino de la Rubia, Leigh S

    2012-09-01

    The Minority Institution Astrobiology Collaborative (MIAC) began working with the NASA Goddard Center for Astrobiology in 2003 to develop curriculum materials for high school chemistry and Earth science classes based on astrobiology concepts. The Astrobiology in Secondary Classrooms (ASC) modules emphasize interdisciplinary connections in astronomy, biology, chemistry, geoscience, physics, mathematics, and ethics through hands-on activities that address national educational standards. Field-testing of the Astrobiology in Secondary Classrooms materials occurred over three years in eight U.S. locations, each with populations that are underrepresented in the career fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Analysis of the educational research upon the high school students participating in the ASC project showed statistically significant increases in students' perceived knowledge and science reasoning. The curriculum is in its final stages, preparing for review to become a NASA educational product.

  1. Viking GCMS Data Restoral and Perceiving Temperature on Other Worlds: Astrobiology Projects at NASA Ames

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guzman, Melissa

    2015-01-01

    The primary task for the summer was to procure the GCMS data from the National Space Science Data Coordinated Archive (NSSDCA) and to assess the current state of the data set for possible reanalysis opportunities. After procurement of the Viking GCMS data set and analysis of its current state, the internship focus shifted to preparing a plan for restoral and archiving of the GCMS data set. A proposal was prepared and submitted to NASA Headquarters to restore and make available the 8000 mass chromatographs that are the basic data generated by the Viking GCMS instrument. The relevance of this restoral and the methodology we propose for restoral is presented. The secondary task for the summer is to develop a thermal model for the perceived temperature of a human standing on Mars, Titan, or Europa. Traditionally, an equation called "Fanger's comfort equation" is used to measure the perceived temperature by a human in a given reference environment. However, there are limitations to this model when applied to other planets. Therefore, the approach for this project has been to derive energy balance equations from first principles and then develop a methodology for correlating "comfort" to energy balance. Using the -20 C walk-in freezer in the Space Sciences building at NASA Ames, energy loss of a human subject is measured. Energy loss for a human being on Mars, Titan and Europa are calculated from first principles. These calculations are compared to the freezer measurements, e.g. for 1 minute on Titan, a human loses as much energy as x minutes in a -20 C freezer. This gives a numerical comparison between the environments. These energy calculations are used to consider the physiological comfort of a human based on the calculated energy losses.

  2. Prospects for nasa s astrobiology mission Leonid Mac and ground-based observations during the upcoming 2002 Leonid storms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jenniskens, P.; Schmidt, G.

    Meteors represent a unique pathway from organic matter in space to prebiotic molecules on Earth. In the process, the organic material is changed in ways that are not easily simulated in the laboratory. An essential step to knowing what molecules may have been delivered from space at the time of the origin of life is understanding the physical conditions in the meteor phenomenon and to trace the fate of organic compounds in real-live meteors. This was the objective of the NASA and USAF sponsored Leonid Multi-Instrument Aircraft Campaign, wth successful missionsi during the strong Leonid showers of November 1998, 1999 and 2001. The research aircraft offer an international team of observers the opportunity to be above clouds and scattered Moon light and to be at the right place, at the right time. One further campaign is being prepared for a mission on November 19, 2002, when the Leonid meteor shower is expected to peak twice in succession, at rates of around ZHR = 4000/hr and 5000/hr, which will be best seen over western Europe and the America's, respectively. This presentation serves to encourage ground-based observations for observers at those locations. To that purpose, a summary will be given of the results to date, with emphasis on the progress made during the spectacular storms of 2001. We will briefly outline the new meteor model that has evolved and our new understanding of persistent emissions and the fate of meteoric matter after deposition. The new data have answered some questions, but also raised numerous issues that need to be addressed further. Finally, past Leonid storms have proven ideal to involve the public in astrobiology and provided a trilling experience, examples of which will be given. The 2002 Leonid storms are expected to be the last until 2099.

  3. The Lassen Astrobiology Intern Program - Concept, Implementation and Evaluation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Des Marais, D. J.; Dueck, S. L.; Davis, H. B.; Parenteau, M. N.; Kubo, M. D.

    2014-12-01

    The program goal was to provide a hands-on astrobiology learning experience to high school students by introducing astrobiology and providing opportunities to conduct field and lab research with NASA scientists. The program sought to increase interest in interdisciplinary science, technology, engineering, math and related careers. Lassen Volcanic National Park (LVNP), Red Bluff High School and the Ames Team of the NASA Astrobiology Institute led the program. LVNP was selected because it shares aspects of volcanism with Mars and it hosts thermal springs with microbial mat communities. Students documented volcanic deposits, springs and microbial mats. They analyzed waters and sampled rocks, water and microorganisms. They cultured microorganisms and studied chemical reactions between rocks and simulated spring waters. Each student prepared a report to present data and discuss relationships between volcanic rocks and gases, spring waters and microbial mats. At a "graduation" event the students presented their findings to the Red Bluff community. They visited Ames Research Center to tour the facilities and learn about science and technology careers. To evaluate program impact, surveys were given to students after lectures, labs, fieldwork and discussions with Ames scientists. Students' work was scored using rubrics (labs, progress reports, final report, presentation). Students took pre/post tests on core astrobiology concepts. Parents, teachers, rangers, Ames staff and students completed end-of-year surveys on program impact. Several outcomes were documented. Students had a unique and highly valued learning experience with NASA scientists. They understood what scientists do through authentic scientific work, and what scientists are like as individuals. Students became knowledgeable about astrobiology and how it can be pursued in the lab and in the field. The students' interest increased markedly in astrobiology, interdisciplinary studies and science generally.

  4. Data Sharing in Astrobiology: The Astrobiology Habitable Environments Database (AHED)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lafuente, B.; Bristow, T.; Stone, N.; Pires, A.; Keller, R. M.; Downs, R. T.; Blake, D.; Fonda, M.

    2017-01-01

    Astrobiology is a multidisciplinary area of scientific research focused on studying the origins of life on Earth and the conditions under which life might have emerged elsewhere in the universe. NASA uses the results of Astrobiology research to help define targets for future missions that are searching for life elsewhere in the universe. The understanding of complex questions in Astrobiology requires integration and analysis of data spanning a range of disciplines including biology, chemistry, geology, astronomy and planetary science. However, the lack of a centralized repository makes it difficult for Astrobiology teams to share data and benefit from resultant synergies. Moreover, in recent years, federal agencies are requiring that results of any federally funded scientific research must be available and useful for the public and the science community. The Astrobiology Habitable Environments Database (AHED), developed with a consolidated group of astrobiologists from different active research teams at NASA Ames Research Center, is designed to help to address these issues. AHED is a central, high-quality, long-term data repository for mineralogical, textural, morphological, inorganic and organic chemical, isotopic and other information pertinent to the advancement of the field of Astrobiology.

  5. Undergraduate Research at SETI in Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kress, Monika; Phillips, C.; DeVore, E.; Hubickyj, O.

    2012-05-01

    The SETI Institute and San Jose State University (SJSU) have begun a partnership (URSA: Undergraduate Research at the SETI Institute in Astrobiology) in which undergraduate science and engineering majors from SJSU participate in research at the SETI Institute during the academic year. We are currently in our second year of the three-year NASA-funded grant. The goal of this program is to expose future scientists, engineers and educators to the science of astrobiology and to NASA in general, and by so doing, to prepare them for the transition to their future career in the Silicon Valley or beyond. The URSA students are mentored by a SETI Institute scientist who conducts research at the SETI Institute headquarters or nearby at NASA Ames Research Center. The SETI Institute is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to scientific research, education and public outreach. Its mission is to explore, understand and explain the origin, nature and prevalence of life in the universe. SJSU is a large urban public university that serves the greater Silicon Valley area in California. Students at SJSU come from diverse ethnic, cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds. Many of them face financial pressures that force them to pursue part-time work. URSA students are paid to work for 10 hours/week during the academic year, and also participate in monthly group meetings where they practice their presentation skills and discuss future plans. We encourage underserved and underrepresented students, including women, minority, and those who are the first in their family to go to college, to apply to the URSA program and provide ongoing mentoring and support as needed. While preparing students for graduate school is not a primary goal, some of our students have gone on to MS or PhD programs or plan to do so. The URSA program is funded by NASA EPOESS.

  6. The UK Centre for Astrobiology: A Virtual Astrobiology Centre. Accomplishments and Lessons Learned, 2011-2016.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cockell, Charles S; Biller, Beth; Bryce, Casey; Cousins, Claire; Direito, Susana; Forgan, Duncan; Fox-Powell, Mark; Harrison, Jesse; Landenmark, Hanna; Nixon, Sophie; Payler, Samuel J; Rice, Ken; Samuels, Toby; Schwendner, Petra; Stevens, Adam; Nicholson, Natasha; Wadsworth, Jennifer

    2018-02-01

    The UK Centre for Astrobiology (UKCA) was set up in 2011 as a virtual center to contribute to astrobiology research, education, and outreach. After 5 years, we describe this center and its work in each of these areas. Its research has focused on studying life in extreme environments, the limits of life on Earth, and implications for habitability elsewhere. Among its research infrastructure projects, UKCA has assembled an underground astrobiology laboratory that has hosted a deep subsurface planetary analog program, and it has developed new flow-through systems to study extraterrestrial aqueous environments. UKCA has used this research backdrop to develop education programs in astrobiology, including a massive open online course in astrobiology that has attracted over 120,000 students, a teacher training program, and an initiative to take astrobiology into prisons. In this paper, we review these activities and others with a particular focus on providing lessons to others who may consider setting up an astrobiology center, institute, or science facility. We discuss experience in integrating astrobiology research into teaching and education activities. Key Words: Astrobiology-Centre-Education-Subsurface-Analog research. Astrobiology 18, 224-243.

  7. Data management in astrobiology: challenges and opportunities for an interdisciplinary community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aydinoglu, Arsev Umur; Suomela, Todd; Malone, Jim

    2014-06-01

    Data management and sharing are growing concerns for scientists and funding organizations throughout the world. Funding organizations are implementing requirements for data management plans, while scientists are establishing new infrastructures for data sharing. One of the difficulties is sharing data among a diverse set of research disciplines. Astrobiology is a unique community of researchers, containing over 110 different disciplines. The current study reports the results of a survey of data management practices among scientists involved in the astrobiology community and the NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI) in particular. The survey was administered over a 2-month period in the first half of 2013. Fifteen percent of the NAI community responded (n=114), and additional (n=80) responses were collected from members of an astrobiology Listserv. The results of the survey show that the astrobiology community shares many of the same concerns for data sharing as other groups. The benefits of data sharing are acknowledged by many respondents, but barriers to data sharing remain, including lack of acknowledgement, citation, time, and institutional rewards. Overcoming technical, institutional, and social barriers to data sharing will be a challenge into the future.

  8. Robots for Astrobiology!

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boston, Penelope J.

    2016-01-01

    The search for life and its study is known as astrobiology. Conducting that search on other planets in our Solar System is a major goal of NASA and other space agencies, and a driving passion of the community of scientists and engineers around the world. We practice for that search in many ways, from exploring and studying extreme environments on Earth, to developing robots to go to other planets and help us look for any possible life that may be there or may have been there in the past. The unique challenges of space exploration make collaborations between robots and humans essential. The products of those collaborations will be novel and driven by the features of wholly new environments. For space and planetary environments that are intolerable for humans or where humans present an unacceptable risk to possible biologically sensitive sites, autonomous robots or telepresence offer excellent choices. The search for life signs on Mars fits within this category, especially in advance of human landed missions there, but also as assistants and tools once humans reach the Red Planet. For planetary destinations where we do not envision humans ever going in person, like bitterly cold icy moons, or ocean worlds with thick ice roofs that essentially make them planetary-sized ice caves, we will rely on robots alone to visit those environments for us and enable us to explore and understand any life that we may find there. Current generation robots are not quite ready for some of the tasks that we need them to do, so there are many opportunities for roboticists of the future to advance novel types of mobility, autonomy, and bio-inspired robotic designs to help us accomplish our astrobiological goals. We see an exciting partnership between robotics and astrobiology continually strengthening as we jointly pursue the quest to find extraterrestrial life.

  9. Synthetic Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rothschild, Lynn J.

    2017-01-01

    "Are we alone?" is one of the primary questions of astrobiology, and whose answer defines our significance in the universe. Unfortunately, this quest is hindered by the fact that we have only one confirmed example of life, that of earth. While this is enormously helpful in helping to define the minimum envelope for life, it strains credulity to imagine that life, if it arose multiple times, has not taken other routes. To help fill this gap, our lab has begun using synthetic biology - the design and construction of new biological parts and systems and the redesign of existing ones for useful purposes - as an enabling technology. One theme, the "Hell Cell" project, focuses on creating artificial extremophiles in order to push the limits for Earth life, and to understand how difficult it is for life to evolve into extreme niches. In another project, we are re-evolving biotic functions using only the most thermodynamically stable amino acids in order to understand potential capabilities of an early organism with a limited repertoire of amino acids.

  10. The UK Centre for Astrobiology: A Virtual Astrobiology Centre. Accomplishments and Lessons Learned, 2011–2016

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biller, Beth; Bryce, Casey; Cousins, Claire; Direito, Susana; Forgan, Duncan; Fox-Powell, Mark; Harrison, Jesse; Landenmark, Hanna; Nixon, Sophie; Payler, Samuel J.; Rice, Ken; Samuels, Toby; Schwendner, Petra; Stevens, Adam; Nicholson, Natasha; Wadsworth, Jennifer

    2018-01-01

    Abstract The UK Centre for Astrobiology (UKCA) was set up in 2011 as a virtual center to contribute to astrobiology research, education, and outreach. After 5 years, we describe this center and its work in each of these areas. Its research has focused on studying life in extreme environments, the limits of life on Earth, and implications for habitability elsewhere. Among its research infrastructure projects, UKCA has assembled an underground astrobiology laboratory that has hosted a deep subsurface planetary analog program, and it has developed new flow-through systems to study extraterrestrial aqueous environments. UKCA has used this research backdrop to develop education programs in astrobiology, including a massive open online course in astrobiology that has attracted over 120,000 students, a teacher training program, and an initiative to take astrobiology into prisons. In this paper, we review these activities and others with a particular focus on providing lessons to others who may consider setting up an astrobiology center, institute, or science facility. We discuss experience in integrating astrobiology research into teaching and education activities. Key Words: Astrobiology—Centre—Education—Subsurface—Analog research. Astrobiology 18, 224–243. PMID:29377716

  11. Astrobiology Education and Outreach: New Interdisciplinary Initiatives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schultz, Greg

    In 1998, UCLA was selected as one of the 11 initial members (5 of which are universities) of the NASA Astrobiology Institute. Concurrently, UCLA implemented a brand new General Education cluster course, GE 70ABC: ``Evolution of the Cosmos and Life,'' which is unique for several reasons. It is (a) interdisciplinary, introducing students to both the life and physical sciences, (b) team-taught by 4 distinguished professors, and 4 advanced graduate teaching fellows, (c) offered for (150) freshmen students exclusively, and (d) a year-long sequence, incorporating lectures, laboratory/discussion sections, field trips, and in the spring quarter, small satellite seminars led by the individual instructors on topics radiating from the cluster theme. Further information about GE 70ABC can be found at the course website (http://www.ess.ucla.edu/Cluster_TOC.html) and the website for UCLA's GE cluster courses (http://www.college.ucla.edu/ge/clusters.htm). This poster will outline the GE 70 content, and describe some of the course's materials, activities, assessment, and student characteristics. Additionally, focus will be placed on the GE 70C seminar course component called ``Life In the Cosmos,'' designed and offered by the poster author for the Spring 1999 quarter. This seminar features a student-centered approach - with lecturing minimized and active learning a key objective - and addresses the extraterrestrial life debate from historical and cultural perspectives as well as the current scientific approaches in astrobiology/bioastronomy.

  12. Introducing NASA's Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pendleton, Yvonne

    The Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI) is focused on the Moon, near Earth asteroids, and the moons of Mars. Comprised of competitively selected teams across the U.S., a growing number of international partnerships around the world, and a small central office located at NASA Ames Research Center, the institute advances collaborative research to bridge science and exploration goals. As a virtual institute, SSERVI brings unique skills and collaborative technologies for enhancing collaborative research between geographically disparate teams. SSERVI is jointly funded through the NASA Science Mission Directorate and the NASA Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate. Current U.S. teams include: Dr. Jennifer L. Heldmann, NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA; Dr. William Farrell, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD; Prof. Carlé Pieters, Brown University, Providence, RI; Prof. Daniel Britt, University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL; Prof. Timothy Glotch, Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY; Dr. Mihaly Horanyi, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO; Dr. Ben Bussey, Johns Hopkins Univ. Applied Physics Laboratory, Laurel, MD; Dr. David A. Kring, Lunar and Planetary Institute, Houston, TX; and Dr. William Bottke, Southwest Research Institute, Boulder, CO. Interested in becoming part of SSERVI? SSERVI Cooperative Agreement Notice (CAN) awards are staggered every 2.5-3yrs, with award periods of five-years per team. SSERVI encourages those who wish to join the institute in the future to engage current teams and international partners regarding potential collaboration, and to participate in focus groups or current team activities now. Joining hand in hand with international partners is a winning strategy for raising the tide of Solar System science around the world. Non-U.S. science organizations can propose to become either Associate or Affiliate members on a no-exchange-of-funds basis. Current international partners

  13. Summer Research Experiences for Science and Art Teachers to Explore Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cola, J.; Gaucher, E.; Snell, T.; Greenwood, J.; Angra, A.; Zimmerman, C.; Williams, L. D.

    2012-12-01

    The Georgia Tech Center for Ribosomal Origins and Evolution, a center funded by the NASA Astrobiology Institute, developed an educational program titled, "Life on the Edge: Astrobiology." The purpose of the program was to provide high school educators with the exposure, materials, and skills necessary to prepare our future workforce and to foster student interest in scientific discovery on Earth and throughout the universe. In an effort to promote and encourage entry into teaching careers, Georgia Tech paired teachers in the Georgia Intern-Fellowship for Teachers (GIFT) program with undergraduate students interested in becoming a teacher through the NSF Pre-Teaching REU program. The GIFT and Pre-Teaching fellows investigated extremophiles, which became the focus of a week-long, "Life on the Edge: Astrobiology " summer program developed by three high school educators, two undergraduate students and faculty in the Schools of Biology, and Chemistry and Biochemistry at Georgia Tech. Twenty high school students were introduced to hands-on activities, such as astrobiology inspired art and techniques such as genomic DNA purification, gel electrophoresis, and Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR). The impact of the Astrobiology program on the GIFT researchers, Pre-Teaching REU students, high school students, and faculty are discussed.

  14. Biomolecules in Astrobiology

    OpenAIRE

    Meringer, Markus

    2013-01-01

    Astrobiology is the study of the origin, distribution and future of life in the universe, biomolecules are molecules produced by living organisms. This talk reviews known facts and open questions about biomolecules in the context of Astrobiology and introduces a research project on "Creating a Reference Set of Amino Acids Structures for Use in Multiple Astrobiology Investigations" that tries to find answers using computational methods.

  15. Exploring Astrobiology: Future and In-Service Teacher Research Experiences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cola, J.; Williams, L. D.; Snell, T.; Gaucher, E.; Harris, B.; Usselman, M. C.; Millman, R. S.

    2009-12-01

    The Georgia Tech Center for Ribosome Adaptation and Evolution, a center funded by the NASA Astrobiology Institute, developed an educational Astrobiology program titled, “Life on the Edge: Astrobiology.” The purpose of the program was to provide educators with the materials, exposure, and skills necessary to prepare our future workforce and to foster student interest in scientific discovery on Earth and throughout the universe. A one-week, non-residential summer enrichment program for high school students was conducted and tested by two high school educators, an undergraduate student, and faculty in the Schools of Biology, and Chemistry and Biochemistry at Georgia Tech. In an effort to promote and encourage entry into teaching careers, Georgia Tech paired in-service teachers in the Georgia Intern-Fellowship for Teachers (GIFT) program with an undergraduate student interested in becoming a teacher through the Tech to Teaching program. The GIFT and Tech to Teaching fellows investigated extremophiles which have adapted to life under extreme environmental conditions. As a result, extremophiles became the focus of a week-long, “Life on the Edge: Astrobiology” curriculum aligned with the Georgia Performance Standards in Biology. Twenty-five high school students explored the adaptation and survival rates for various types of extremophiles exposed to UV radiation and desiccation; students were also introduced to hands-on activities and techniques such as genomic DNA purification, gel electrophoresis, and Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR). The impact on everyone invested and involved in the Astrobiology program including the GIFT and Tech to Teaching fellows, high school students, and faculty are discussed.

  16. NASA/Max Planck Institute Barium Ion Cloud Project.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brence, W. A.; Carr, R. E.; Gerlach, J. C.; Neuss, H.

    1973-01-01

    NASA and the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics (MPE), Munich, Germany, conducted a cooperative experiment involving the release and study of a barium cloud at 31,500 km altitude near the equatorial plane. The release was made near local magnetic midnight on Sept. 21, 1971. The MPE-built spacecraft contained a canister of 16 kg of Ba CuO mixture, a two-axis magnetometer, and other payload instrumentation. The objectives of the experiment were to investigate the interaction of the ionized barium cloud with the ambient medium and to deduce the properties of electric fields in the proximity of the release. An overview of the project is given to briefly summarize the organization, responsibilities, objectives, instrumentation, and operational aspects of the project.

  17. Astrochemistry and astrobiology

    CERN Document Server

    Smith, Ian W M; Leach, Sydney

    2014-01-01

    This debut volume in the new Springer series Physical Chemistry in Action, composed of expert contributions, is aimed at both novice and experienced researchers, and outlines the principles of the physical chemistry deployed in astrochemistry and astrobiology.

  18. Cultural Aspects of Astrobiology: A Preliminary Reconnaissance at

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dick, Steven

    NASA's Astrobiology Roadmap, developed in 1998 by an interdisciplinary team of more than 150 individuals, recognizes ten science goals, 17 more specific science objectives, and four broad principles for the Astrobiology Program. Among the four operating principles, which emphasize multidisciplinarity, planetary stewardship and public outreach, is one that also recognizes broad societal interest for the implications of astrobiology, especially its extraterrestrial life component. Although several meetings ahve been convened in the past decade to discuss the implications of extraterrestrial intelligence, including NASA's own CASETI workshops in 1991-1992, none have surveyed the broader implications of astrobiology as now defined at NASA. In this paper we survey these societal questions raised by astrobiology, and then focus on those related to extraterrestrial life, and in particular how they might differ from SETI concerns already discussed. As we enter the new millennium, the necessity for interdisciplinary studies is increasingly recognized in academia, industry and government. Astrobiology provides an unprecedented opportunity to encourage the unity of knowledge, as recently proposed in E. O. Wilson's book Consilience: The Unity of Knowledge. It is incumbent on scientists to support research on the implications of their work, in particular large government-funded scientific projects. The deep insights such study may yield has been amply demonstrated by the Human Genome Project, among others.

  19. Encyclopedia of astrobiology

    CERN Document Server

    Irvine, William; Amils, Ricardo; Cleaves, Henderson; Pinti, Daniele; Quintanilla, José; Rouan, Daniel; Spohn, Tilman; Tirard, Stéphane; Viso, Michel

    2015-01-01

    The interdisciplinary field of Astrobiology constitutes a joint arena where provocative discoveries are coalescing concerning, e.g. the prevalence of exoplanets, the diversity and hardiness of life, and its increasingly likely chances for its emergence. Biologists, astrophysicists, biochemists, geoscientists and space scientists share this exciting mission of revealing the origin and commonality of life in the Universe. The members of the different disciplines are used to their own terminology and technical language. In the interdisciplinary environment many terms either have redundant meanings or are completely unfamiliar to members of other disciplines. The Encyclopedia of Astrobiology serves as the key to a common understanding. Each new or experienced researcher and graduate student in adjacent fields of astrobiology will appreciate this reference work in the quest to understand the big picture. The carefully selected group of active researchers contributing to this work and the expert field editors inten...

  20. Encyclopedia of astrobiology

    CERN Document Server

    Quintanilla, José Cernicharo; Cleaves, Henderson James (Jim); Irvine, William M; Pinti, Daniele L; Viso, Michel; Gargaud, Muriel

    2011-01-01

    The interdisciplinary field of Astrobiology constitutes a joint arena where provocative discoveries are coalescing concerning, e.g. the prevalence of exoplanets, the diversity and hardiness of life, and its increasingly likely chances for its emergence. Biologists, astrophysicists, biochemists, geoscientists and space scientists share this exciting mission of revealing the origin and commonality of life in the Universe. The members of the different disciplines are used to their own terminology and technical language. In the interdisciplinary environment many terms either have redundant meanings or are completely unfamiliar to members of other disciplines. The Encyclopedia of Astrobiology serves as the key to a common understanding. Each new or experienced researcher and graduate student in adjacent fields of astrobiology will appreciate this reference work in the quest to understand the big picture. The carefully selected group of active researchers contributing to this work and the expert field editors inten...

  1. An Astrobiology Microbes Exhibit and Education Module

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindstrom, Marilyn M.; Allen, Jaclyn S.; Stocco, Karen; Tobola, Kay; Olendzenski, Lorraine

    2001-01-01

    Telling the story of NASA-sponsored scientific research to the public in exhibits is best done by partnerships of scientists and museum professionals. Likewise, preparing classroom activities and training teachers to use them should be done by teams of teachers and scientists. Here we describe how we used such partnerships to develop a new astrobiology augmentation to the Microbes! traveling exhibit and a companion education module. "Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract."

  2. Astrobiology in the Classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brennan, Tim

    2004-01-01

    Astrobiology is a relatively new field of study in science, one that has found a home in the curriculum of many major universities. It is a multidisciplinary field that draws participants from a range of scientific specialties: geology, physics, chemistry, engineering, computer science, and of course biology and astronomy. At the middle level, it…

  3. Habitability & Astrobiology Research in Mars Terrestrial Analogues

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foing, Bernard

    2014-05-01

    ,9), M. Cross (6,7), V. Maivald (10), C. Orgel (6), A. Elsaesser (4), S.O.L. Direito (2,4), W.F.M. Röling (2), G.R. Davies (2); EuroGeoMars2009 Team, DOMMEX-ILEWG EuroMoonMars 2010-2013 Teams (1) ESA/ ESTEC, Postbus 299, 2200 AG Noordwik, NL; (2) Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, NL; (3) NASA Ames Research Centre; US; (4) Leiden U. , NL; (5) Space Policy Institute, GWU, Washington D.C., USA; (6) ILEWG; (7) CPSX; (8) Cerberus Blackshore, ESIC Noordwijk, NL; (9) ENSC Bordeaux; (10) DLR, Bremen

  4. Astrobiology: Not Just Little Green Men

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morrison, D.

    2004-05-01

    Astrobiology is the study of the origin, evolution, distribution, and future of life in the universe. This new (or at least newly-named) discipline responds to current opportunities to make significant progress on basic questions such as Where did we come from? Are we alone? Can we live on other planets? Every astronomer knows that these questions are frequently asked by the public, along with questions concerning the origin, dimensions, and ultimate fate of the universe itself. What makes curiosity about life in the universe so interesting is that we have some of the tools today to provide answers. Infrared and microwave telescopes characterize the complex chemistry that accompanies the birth of planetary systems. Concepts of planetary habitability emerge from exploring the extremes of life on Earth. We probe the nature of life itself through genetic and genomic insights into heredity and evolution. Our spacecraft are exploring Mars, Europa, and Titan, with the explicit goal of searching for evidence of life, past or present. And the discovery of exo-planetary systems greatly increases our opportunity to explore the diversity of planets and identify other habitable worlds. In addition to its interest as a research field, astrobiology provides an exciting medium for communicating science to students and the public. The questions studied by astrobiologists resonate with non-scientists. Astrobiology is also a popular subject for general-education college science courses. Its interdisciplinary techniques illustrate different ways of doing research such as exploration science versus hypothesis-driven science, or laboratory studies that are complementary to field work or historical science. All of these aspects make astrobiology a "cool" topic, and it will become even more exciting when we find evidence of life on Mars or discover earthlike planets beyond our solar system. (Supported by the NASA Astrobiology Program)

  5. AstRoMap European Astrobiology Roadmap.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horneck, Gerda; Walter, Nicolas; Westall, Frances; Grenfell, John Lee; Martin, William F; Gomez, Felipe; Leuko, Stefan; Lee, Natuschka; Onofri, Silvano; Tsiganis, Kleomenis; Saladino, Raffaele; Pilat-Lohinger, Elke; Palomba, Ernesto; Harrison, Jesse; Rull, Fernando; Muller, Christian; Strazzulla, Giovanni; Brucato, John R; Rettberg, Petra; Capria, Maria Teresa

    2016-03-01

    The European AstRoMap project (supported by the European Commission Seventh Framework Programme) surveyed the state of the art of astrobiology in Europe and beyond and produced the first European roadmap for astrobiology research. In the context of this roadmap, astrobiology is understood as the study of the origin, evolution, and distribution of life in the context of cosmic evolution; this includes habitability in the Solar System and beyond. The AstRoMap Roadmap identifies five research topics, specifies several key scientific objectives for each topic, and suggests ways to achieve all the objectives. The five AstRoMap Research Topics are • Research Topic 1: Origin and Evolution of Planetary Systems • Research Topic 2: Origins of Organic Compounds in Space • Research Topic 3: Rock-Water-Carbon Interactions, Organic Synthesis on Earth, and Steps to Life • Research Topic 4: Life and Habitability • Research Topic 5: Biosignatures as Facilitating Life Detection It is strongly recommended that steps be taken towards the definition and implementation of a European Astrobiology Platform (or Institute) to streamline and optimize the scientific return by using a coordinated infrastructure and funding system.

  6. Astrobiology - The New Synthesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sik, A.; Simon, T.

    Background In connection with the complex planetology-education in Hungary [1] we have compiled an Astrobiology coursebook - as a base of its teaching in universities and perhaps in secondary schools as well. We tried to collect and assemble in a logical and thematical order the scientific breakthroughs of the last years, that made possible the fast improvement of astrobiology. The followings are a kind of summary of these. Introduction - The ultimate science Astrobiology is a young science, that search for the possibility, forms and places of extraterrestrial life. But it is not SETI, because do not search for intelligent life, just for living organisms, so SETI is a part of astrobiology. and an extremely important statement: we can search for life-forms that similar to terrestrial life in physiology so we can recognize it as life. Astrobiology is one of the most dynamical-developing sciences of the 21st century. To determine its boundaries is difficult because the complex nature of it: astrobiology melt into itself lot of other sciences, like a kind of ultimate science. The fundamental questions are very simple [2]: When, where and how converted the organic matter into life?; How does life evolve in the Universe?; Has it appeared on other planets?; How does it spread in time and space?; and What is the future of terrestrial life? However, trying to find the answers is quite difficult. So an astrobiologist has to be aware of the basics of astronomy, space research, earth and planetary sciences, and life sciences (mainly ecology, genetics, molecular and evolution biology). But it is not enough - the newest results of these at least as important as the basic knowledge. Part I. - Astro 1. Exoplanets 1995 was a particular year in astronomy: we have found the first planet out of the Solar System. Since that time the discovery of exoplanets progress fast: nowdays more than 80 examples are known and just 6 years passed [3]. The detailed analysis of these distant objects

  7. Astrobiology: Future Perspectives

    CERN Document Server

    Ehrenfreund, Pascale; Owen, Toby; Becker, Luann; Blank, Jen; Brucato, John; Colangeli, Luigi; Derenne, Sylvie; Dutrey, Anne; Despois, Didier; Lazcano, Antonio; Robert, Francois

    2005-01-01

    Astrobiology, a new exciting interdisciplinary research field, seeks to unravel the origin and evolution of life wherever it might exist in the Universe. The current view of the origin of life on Earth is that it is strongly connected to the origin and evolution of our planet and, indeed, of the Universe as a whole. We are fortunate to be living in an era where centuries of speculation about the two ancient and fundamental problems: the origin of life and its prevalence in the Universe are being replaced by experimental science. The subject of Astrobiology can be approached from many different perspectives. This book is focused on abiogenic organic matter from the viewpoint of astronomy and planetary science and considers its potential relevance to the origins of life on Earth and elsewhere. Guided by the review papers in this book, the concluding chapter aims to identify key questions to motivate future research and stimulate astrobiological applications of current and future research facilities and space mi...

  8. The astrobiology primer: an outline of general knowledge--version 1, 2006.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Billings, L; Cameron, V; Claire, M; Dick, G J; Domagal-Goldman, S D; Javaux, E J; Johnson, O J; Laws, C; Race, M S; Rask, J; Rummel, J D; Schelble, R T; Vance, S

    2006-10-01

    The Astrobiology Primer has been created as a reference tool for those who are interested in the interdisciplinary field of astrobiology. The field incorporates many diverse research endeavors, but it is our hope that this slim volume will present the reader with all he or she needs to know to become involved and to understand, at least at a fundamental level, the state of the art. Each section includes a brief overview of a topic and a short list of readable and important literature for those interested in deeper knowledge. Because of the great diversity of material, each section was written by a different author with a different expertise. Contributors, authors, and editors are listed at the beginning, along with a list of those chapters and sections for which they were responsible. We are deeply indebted to the NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI), in particular to Estelle Dodson, David Morrison, Ed Goolish, Krisstina Wilmoth, and Rose Grymes for their continued enthusiasm and support. The Primer came about in large part because of NAI support for graduate student research, collaboration, and inclusion as well as direct funding. We have entitled the Primer version 1 in hope that it will be only the first in a series, whose future volumes will be produced every 3-5 years. This way we can insure that the Primer keeps up with the current state of research. We hope that it will be a great resource for anyone trying to stay abreast of an ever-changing field.

  9. Astrobiological Studies Plan at UCSD and the University of Buckingham

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibson, Carl H.; Wickramasinghe, N. Chandra

    2011-10-01

    A UC-HBCU grant is requested to assist undergraduate and masters level HBCU Interns to achieve their professional and academic goals by attending summer school classes at UCSD along with graduate students in the UCSD Astrobiology Studies program, and by also attending a NASA sponsored scientific meeting in San Diego on Astrobiology organized by NASA scientist Richard Hoover (the 14th in a sequence). Hoover has recently published a paper in the Journal of Cosmology claiming extraterrestrial life fossils in three meteorites. Students will attend a workshop to prepare research publications on Astrobiological Science for the Journal of Cosmology or equivalent refereed journal, mentored by UCSD faculty and graduate students as co-authors and referees, all committed to the several months of communication usually required to complete a publishable paper. The program is intended to provide pathways to graduate admissions in the broad range of science and engineering fields, and by exposure to fundamental science and engineering disciplines needed by Astrobiologists. A three year UC-HBCU Astrobiological Studies program is proposed: 2011, 2012 and 2013. Interns would be eligible to enter this program when they become advanced graduate students. A center of excellence in astrobiology is planned for UCSD similar to that Directed by Professor Wickramasinghe for many years with Fred Hoyle at Cardiff University, http://www.astrobiology.cf.ac.uk /chandra1.html. Professor Wickramasinghe's CV is attached as Appendix 1. Figures A2-1,2 of Appendix 2 compare Astrobiology timelines of modern fluid mechanical and astrobiological models of Gibson/Wickramasinghe/Schild of the Journal of Cosmology with standard NASA- CDMHC models. NASA support will be sought to support research and educational aspects of both initiatives. Overload teaching of up to two courses a year by UCSD faculty of key astrobiology courses at either UCSD or at HBCU campuses is authorized by recent guidelines of UCSD

  10. Philosophy and data in astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mix, Lucas John

    2018-04-01

    Creating a unified model of life in the universe - history, extent and future - requires both scientific and humanities research. One way that humanities can contribute is by investigating the relationship between philosophical commitments and data. Making those commitments transparent allows scientists to use the data more fully. Insights in four areas - history, ethics, religion and probability - demonstrate the value of careful, astrobiology-specific humanities research for improving how we talk and think about astrobiology as a whole. First, astrobiology has a long and influential history. Second, astrobiology does not decentre humanity, either physically or ethically. Third, astrobiology is broadly compatible with major world religions. Finally, claims about the probability of life arising or existing elsewhere rest heavily on philosophical priors. In all four cases, identifying philosophical commitments clarifies the ways in which data can tell us about life.

  11. Astrobiology of Comets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoover, Richard B.; Wickramasinghe, Nalin C.; Wallis, Max K.; Sheldon, Robert B.

    2004-01-01

    We review the current state of knowledge concerning microbial extremophiles and comets and the potential significance of comets to Astrobiology. We model the thermal history of a cometary body, regarded as an assemblage of boulders, dust, ices and organics, as it approaches a perihelion distance of - IAU. The transfer of incident energy from sunlight into the interior leads to the melting of near surface ices, some under stable porous crust, providing possible habitats for a wide range of microorganisms. We provide data concerning new evidence for indigenous microfossils in CI meteorites, which may be the remains of extinct cometary cores. We discuss the dominant microbial communities of polar sea-ice, Antarctic ice sheet, and cryoconite environments as possible analogs for microbial ecosystems that may grow in sub-crustal pools or in ice/water films in comets.

  12. Multispectral Microimager for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sellar, R. Glenn; Farmer, Jack D.; Kieta, Andrew; Huang, Julie

    2006-01-01

    A primary goal of the astrobiology program is the search for fossil records. The astrobiology exploration strategy calls for the location and return of samples indicative of environments conducive to life, and that best capture and preserve biomarkers. Successfully returning samples from environments conducive to life requires two primary capabilities: (1) in situ mapping of the mineralogy in order to determine whether the desired minerals are present; and (2) nondestructive screening of samples for additional in-situ testing and/or selection for return to laboratories for more in-depth examination. Two of the most powerful identification techniques are micro-imaging and visible/infrared spectroscopy. The design and test results are presented from a compact rugged instrument that combines micro-imaging and spectroscopic capability to provide in-situ analysis, mapping, and sample screening capabilities. Accurate reflectance spectra should be a measure of reflectance as a function of wavelength only. Other compact multispectral microimagers use separate LEDs (light-emitting diodes) for each wavelength and therefore vary the angles of illumination when changing wavelengths. When observing a specularly-reflecting sample, this produces grossly inaccurate spectra due to the variation in the angle of illumination. An advanced design and test results are presented for a multispectral microimager which demonstrates two key advances relative to previous LED-based microimagers: (i) acquisition of actual reflectance spectra in which the flux is a function of wavelength only, rather than a function of both wavelength and illumination geometry; and (ii) increase in the number of spectral bands to eight bands covering a spectral range of 468 to 975 nm.

  13. Astrobiology, Sustainability and Ethical Perspectives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnould, Jacques

    2009-12-01

    Astrobiology, a new field of research associating the prospects and constraints of prebiotic chemistry, mineralogy, geochemistry, astrophysics, theoretical physics, microbial ecology, etc., is assessed in terms of sustainability through the scientific and social functions it fulfils, and the limits it encounters or strives to overcome. In the same way as sustainable development, astrobiology must also take into account the temporal dimension specific to its field of investigation and examine its underlying conception of Nature.

  14. Astrobiology, Sustainability and Ethical Perspectives

    OpenAIRE

    Jacques Arnould

    2009-01-01

    Astrobiology, a new field of research associating the prospects and constraints of prebiotic chemistry, mineralogy, geochemistry, astrophysics, theoretical physics, microbial ecology, etc., is assessed in terms of sustainability through the scientific and social functions it fulfils, and the limits it encounters or strives to overcome. In the same way as sustainable development, astrobiology must also take into account the temporal dimension specific to its field of investigation and examine ...

  15. Astrobiology, Sustainability and Ethical Perspectives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacques Arnould

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Astrobiology, a new field of research associating the prospects and constraints of prebiotic chemistry, mineralogy, geochemistry, astrophysics, theoretical physics, microbial ecology, etc., is assessed in terms of sustainability through the scientific and social functions it fulfils, and the limits it encounters or strives to overcome. In the same way as sustainable development, astrobiology must also take into account the temporal dimension specific to its field of investigation and examine its underlying conception of Nature.

  16. The NASA Electronic Parts and Packaging (NEPP) Program - Presentation to Korean Aerospace Research Institute

    Science.gov (United States)

    LaBel, Kenneth A.; Sampson, Michael J.

    2016-01-01

    This presentation will provide basic information about NASA's Electronic Parts and Packaging Program (NEPP), for sharing with representatives of the South Korean Aerospace Research Institute (KARI) as part of a larger presentation by Headquarters Office of Safety and Mission Assurance. The NEPP information includes mission and goals, history of the program, basic focus areas, strategies, deliverables and some examples of current tasks.

  17. "NASA's Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute"; - Expanded Goals and New Teams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daou, D.; Schmidt, G. K.; Pendleton, Y.; Bailey, B. E.

    2014-04-01

    The NASA Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI) has been pursuing international partnerships since its inception as the NASA Lunar Science Institute (NLSI), in order to both leverage the science being done by its domestic member institutions as well as to help lunar science and exploration become a greater global endeavor. The international partners of the Institute have pursued a broad program of lunar science stimulated by scientific partnerships enabled by the SSERVI community. Furthermore, regional partnerships have been formed such as the new pan-European lunar science consortium, which promises both new scientific approaches and mission concepts. International partner membership requires long-term commitment from both the partner and SSERVI, together with tangible and specific plans for scientific interaction that will produce results of mutual benefit to both the institute's U.S. Teams and the international partner. International partners are invited to participate in all aspects of the Institute's activities and programs, on a basis of no exchange of funds. Through these activities, SSERVI researchers and international partners participate in sharing ideas, information, and data arising from their respective research efforts, and contribute to the training of young scientists. This talk will present an overview of the Institute and the international nodes. We will also discuss the various processes to become a SSERVI partner as well as the opportunities available for collaborations with the SSERVI national teams.

  18. NASA's Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute: Merging Science and Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pendleton, Yvonne J.

    2016-10-01

    Established in 2013, through joint funding from the NASA Science Mission Directorate (SMD) and Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate (HEOMD), NASA's Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI) is focused on science at the intersection of these two enterprises. Addressing questions of value to the human exploration program that also represent important research relevant to planetary science, SSERVI creates a bridge between HEOMD and SMD. The virtual institute model reduces travel costs, but its primary virtue is the ability to join together colleagues who bring the right expertise, techniques and tools, regardless of their physical location, to address multi-faceted problems, at a deeper level than could be achieved through the typical period of smaller research grants. In addition, collaboration across team lines and international borders fosters the creation of new knowledge, especially at the intersections of disciplines that might not otherwise overlap.SSERVI teams investigate the Moon, Near-Earth Asteroids, and the moons of Mars, addressing questions fundamental to these target bodies and their near space environments. The institute is currently composed of nine U.S. teams of 30-50 members each, distributed geographically across the United States, ten international partners, and a Central Office located at NASA Ames Research Center in Silicon Valley, CA. U.S. teams are competitively selected through peer-reviewed proposals submitted to NASA every 2-3 years, in response to a Cooperative Agreement Notice (CAN). The current teams were selected under CAN-1, with funding for five years (2014-2019). A smaller, overlapping set of teams are expected to be added in 2017 in response to CAN-2, thereby providing continuity and a firm foundation for any directional changes NASA requires as the CAN-1 teams end their term. This poster describes the research areas and composition of the institute to introduce SSERVI to the broader planetary

  19. NASA's Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute: Merging Science and Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pendleton, Y. J.; Schmidt, G. K.; Bailey, B. E.; Minafra, J. A.

    2016-01-01

    NASA's Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI) represents a close collaboration between science, technology and exploration, and was created to enable a deeper understanding of the Moon and other airless bodies. SSERVI is supported jointly by NASA's Science Mission Directorate and Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate. The institute currently focuses on the scientific aspects of exploration as they pertain to the Moon, Near Earth Asteroids (NEAs) and the moons of Mars, but the institute goals may expand, depending on NASA's needs, in the future. The 9 initial teams, selected in late 2013 and funded from 2014-2019, have expertise across the broad spectrum of lunar, NEA, and Martian moon sciences. Their research includes various aspects of the surface, interior, exosphere, near-space environments, and dynamics of these bodies. NASA anticipates a small number of additional teams to be selected within the next two years, with a Cooperative Agreement Notice (CAN) likely to be released in 2016. Calls for proposals are issued every 2-3 years to allow overlap between generations of institute teams, but the intent for each team is to provide a stable base of funding for a five year period. SSERVI's mission includes acting as a bridge between several groups, joining together researchers from: 1) scientific and exploration communities, 2) multiple disciplines across a wide range of planetary sciences, and 3) domestic and international communities and partnerships. The SSERVI central office is located at NASA Ames Research Center in Mountain View, CA. The administrative staff at the central office forms the organizational hub for the domestic and international teams and enables the virtual collaborative environment. Interactions with geographically dispersed teams across the U.S., and global partners, occur easily and frequently in a collaborative virtual environment. This poster will provide an overview of the 9 current US teams and

  20. Vibrational Spectroscopy and Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaban, Galina M.; Kwak, D. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    Role of vibrational spectroscopy in solving problems related to astrobiology will be discussed. Vibrational (infrared) spectroscopy is a very sensitive tool for identifying molecules. Theoretical approach used in this work is based on direct computation of anharmonic vibrational frequencies and intensities from electronic structure codes. One of the applications of this computational technique is possible identification of biological building blocks (amino acids, small peptides, DNA bases) in the interstellar medium (ISM). Identifying small biological molecules in the ISM is very important from the point of view of origin of life. Hybrid (quantum mechanics/molecular mechanics) theoretical techniques will be discussed that may allow to obtain accurate vibrational spectra of biomolecular building blocks and to create a database of spectroscopic signatures that can assist observations of these molecules in space. Another application of the direct computational spectroscopy technique is to help to design and analyze experimental observations of ice surfaces of one of the Jupiter's moons, Europa, that possibly contains hydrated salts. The presence of hydrated salts on the surface can be an indication of a subsurface ocean and the possible existence of life forms inhabiting such an ocean.

  1. From Astrochemistry to Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allamandola, L. J.

    2005-01-01

    Tremendous strides have been made in our understanding of interstellar material over the past twenty five years thanks to significant developments in observational astronomy and laboratory astrophysics. Twenty years ago the composition of interstellar dust was largely guessed at, the concept of ices in dense molecular clouds ignored, and the notion of large, abundant, gas phase, carbon-rich molecules widespread throughout the interstellar medium (ISM) considered impossible. Today the composition of interstellar dust is reasonably well understood. In molecular clouds, the birthplace of stars and planets, these cold dust particles are coated with mixed molecular ices whose composition is very well constrained. Lastly, the signature of carbon-rich polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), shockingly large molecules by early interstellar chemistry standards, is widespread throughout the Universe. The first part of this talk will describe how infrared spectroscopic studies of interstellar space, combined with laboratory simulations of interstellar ice chemistry, have revealed the widespread presence of interstellar PAHs and the composition of interstellar ices, the building blocks of comets. The remainder of the presentation will focus on the photochemical evolution of these materials and astrobiology. Within a molecular cloud, and especially the presolar nebula, materials frozen into the ices are photoprocessed by ultraviolet light and produce more complex molecules. As these materials are the building blocks of comets and related to carbonaceous micrometeorites, they are likely to have been important sources of complex materials delivered to the early Earth and their composition may be related to the origin of life.

  2. "NASA's Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute" - Expanded Goals and More Partners

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daou, D.; Schmidt, G.; Pendleton, Y.; Bailey, B.; Morrison, D.

    2015-10-01

    The NASA Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI) has been pursuing international partnerships since its inceptionas the NASA Lunar Science Institute (NLSI), in order to both leverage the science being done by its domestic member institutions as well as to help lunar science and exploration become a greater global endeavor. The international partners of the I nstitute have pursued a broad program of lunar science stimulated by scientific partnerships enabled by the SSERVI community. Furthermore, regional partnerships have been formed such as the new pan- European lunar science consortium, which promises both new scientific approaches and mission concepts.International partner membership requires longterm commitment from both the partner and SSERVI, together with tangible and specific plans for scientific interaction that will produce results of mutual benefit to both the institute's U.S. Teams and the international partner.International partners are invited to participate in all aspects of the Institute's activities and programs, on a basis of no exchange of funds. Through these activities, SSERVI researchers and international partners participate in sharing ideas, information, and data arising from their respective research efforts, and contribute to the training of young scientists.This talk will present an overview of the Institute and the international nodes. We will also discuss the various processes to become a SSERVI partner as well as the opportunities available for collaborations with the SSERVI national teams.

  3. Multidisciplinary integrated field campaign to an acidic Martian Earth analogue with astrobiological interest: Rio Tinto

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Gómez, F.; Walter, N.; Amils, R.; Rull, F.; Klingelhöfer, G.; Kvíderová, Jana; Sarrazin, P.; Foing, B.; Behar, A.; Fleischer, I.; Parro, V.; Garcia-Villadangos, M.; Blake, D.; Martin-Ramos, J. D.; Direito, S.; Mahapatra, P.; Stam, C.; Venkateswaran, K.; Voytek, M.

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 10, č. 3 (2011), 291-305 ISSN 1473-5504 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : astrobiology * extreme environments * Earth analogue Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 1.723, year: 2011

  4. NASA's Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute: Building Collaboration Through International Partnerships

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibbs, K. E.; Schmidt, G. K.

    2017-01-01

    The NASA Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI) is a virtual institute focused on re-search at the intersection of science and exploration, training the next generation of lunar scientists, and community development. As part of the SSERVI mission, we act as a hub for opportunities that engage the larger scientific and exploration communities in order to form new interdisciplinary, research-focused collaborations. This talk will describe the international partner re-search efforts and how we are engaging the international science and exploration communities through workshops, conferences, online seminars and classes, student exchange programs and internships.

  5. Life Out There: An Astrobiological Multimedia Experience for the Digital Planetarium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, K. C.; Grinspoon, D.

    2013-04-01

    Planetariums have a long history of experimentation with audio and visuals to create new multimedia experiences. We report on a series of innovative experiences in the Gates Planetarium at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science in 2009-2011 combining live performances of music and navigation through scientific visualizations. The Life Out There productions featured a story showcasing astrobiology concepts at scales ranging from galactic to molecular, and told using VJ-ing of immersive visualizations and musical performances from the House Band to the Universe. Funded by the NASA Astrobiology Institute's JPL-Titan Team, these hour-long shows were broken into four separate themed musical movements, with an improvisatory mix of music, dome visuals, and spoken science narrative which resulted in no two performances being exactly alike. Post-performance dissemination is continuing via a recorded version of the performance available as a DVD and online streaming video. Written evaluations from visitors who were present at the live shows reveal high satisfaction, while one of the Life Out There concerts was used to inaugurate a new evening program to draw in a younger audience demographic to DMNS.

  6. The NASA Ames Research Center Institutional Scientific Collection: History, Best Practices and Scientific Opportunities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rask, Jon C.; Chakravarty, Kaushik; French, Alison; Choi, Sungshin; Stewart, Helen

    2017-01-01

    The NASA Ames Life Sciences Institutional Scientific Collection (ISC), which is composed of the Ames Life Sciences Data Archive (ALSDA) and the Biospecimen Storage Facility (BSF), is managed by the Space Biosciences Division and has been operational since 1993. The ALSDA is responsible for archiving information and animal biospecimens collected from life science spaceflight experiments and matching ground control experiments. Both fixed and frozen spaceflight and ground tissues are stored in the BSF within the ISC. The ALSDA also manages a Biospecimen Sharing Program, performs curation and long-term storage operations, and makes biospecimens available to the scientific community for research purposes via the Life Science Data Archive public website (https:lsda.jsc.nasa.gov). As part of our best practices, a viability testing plan has been developed for the ISC, which will assess the quality of archived samples. We expect that results from the viability testing will catalyze sample use, enable broader science community interest, and improve operational efficiency of the ISC. The current viability test plan focuses on generating disposition recommendations and is based on using ribonucleic acid (RNA) integrity number (RIN) scores as a criteria for measurement of biospecimen viablity for downstream functional analysis. The plan includes (1) sorting and identification of candidate samples, (2) conducting a statiscally-based power analysis to generate representaive cohorts from the population of stored biospecimens, (3) completion of RIN analysis on select samples, and (4) development of disposition recommendations based on the RIN scores. Results of this work will also support NASA open science initiatives and guides development of the NASA Scientific Collections Directive (a policy on best practices for curation of biological collections). Our RIN-based methodology for characterizing the quality of tissues stored in the ISC since the 1980s also creates unique

  7. The Astrobiology Habitable Environments Database (AHED)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lafuente, B.; Stone, N.; Downs, R. T.; Blake, D. F.; Bristow, T.; Fonda, M.; Pires, A.

    2015-12-01

    The Astrobiology Habitable Environments Database (AHED) is a central, high quality, long-term searchable repository for archiving and collaborative sharing of astrobiologically relevant data, including, morphological, textural and contextural images, chemical, biochemical, isotopic, sequencing, and mineralogical information. The aim of AHED is to foster long-term innovative research by supporting integration and analysis of diverse datasets in order to: 1) help understand and interpret planetary geology; 2) identify and characterize habitable environments and pre-biotic/biotic processes; 3) interpret returned data from present and past missions; 4) provide a citable database of NASA-funded published and unpublished data (after an agreed-upon embargo period). AHED uses the online open-source software "The Open Data Repository's Data Publisher" (ODR - http://www.opendatarepository.org) [1], which provides a user-friendly interface that research teams or individual scientists can use to design, populate and manage their own database according to the characteristics of their data and the need to share data with collaborators or the broader scientific community. This platform can be also used as a laboratory notebook. The database will have the capability to import and export in a variety of standard formats. Advanced graphics will be implemented including 3D graphing, multi-axis graphs, error bars, and similar scientific data functions together with advanced online tools for data analysis (e. g. the statistical package, R). A permissions system will be put in place so that as data are being actively collected and interpreted, they will remain proprietary. A citation system will allow research data to be used and appropriately referenced by other researchers after the data are made public. This project is supported by the Science-Enabling Research Activity (SERA) and NASA NNX11AP82A, Mars Science Laboratory Investigations. [1] Nate et al. (2015) AGU, submitted.

  8. Astrobiology: Life in Extreme Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaur, Preeti

    2011-01-01

    Astrobiology is the study of the origin, evolution and distribution of life in the universe. It seeks to answer two important scientific questions: how did we get here and are we alone in the universe? Scientists begin by studying life on Earth and its limits. The discovery of extremophiles on Earth capable of surviving extremes encourages the…

  9. Astrobiology and the Human Exploration of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levine, Joel S.; Garvin, James B.; Drake, B. G.; Beaty, David

    2010-01-01

    In March 2007, the Mars Exploration Program Analysis Group (MEPAG) chartered the Human Exploration of Mars Science Analysis Group (HEM-SAG), co-chaired by J. B. Garvin and J. S. Levine and consisting of about 30 Mars scientists from the U.S. and Europe. HEM-SAG was one of a half dozen teams charted by NASA to consider the human exploration of Mars. Other teams included: Mars Entry, Descent and Landing, Human Health and Performance, Flight and Surface Systems, and Heliospheric/Astrophysics. The results of these Mars teams and the development of an architecture for the human exploration of Mars were summarized in two recent publications: Human Exploration of Mars Design Reference Architecture 5.0, NASA Special Publication-2009-566 (B. G. Drake, Editor), 100 pages, July 2009 and Human Exploration of Mars Design Reference Architecture 5.0, NASA Special Publication-2009-566 Addendum (B. G. Drake, Editor), 406 pages, July 2009. This presentation summarizes the HEM-SAG conclusions on astrobiology and the search for life on Mars by humans.

  10. New Developments At The Science Archives Of The NASA Exoplanet Science Institute

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berriman, G. Bruce

    2018-06-01

    The NASA Exoplanet Science Institute (NExScI) at Caltech/IPAC is the science center for NASA's Exoplanet Exploration Program and as such, NExScI operates three scientific archives: the NASA Exoplanet Archive (NEA) and Exoplanet Follow-up Observation Program Website (ExoFOP), and the Keck Observatory Archive (KOA).The NASA Exoplanet Archive supports research and mission planning by the exoplanet community by operating a service that provides confirmed and candidate planets, numerous project and contributed data sets and integrated analysis tools. The ExoFOP provides an environment for exoplanet observers to share and exchange data, observing notes, and information regarding the Kepler, K2, and TESS candidates. KOA serves all raw science and calibration observations acquired by all active and decommissioned instruments at the W. M. Keck Observatory, as well as reduced data sets contributed by Keck observers.In the coming years, the NExScI archives will support a series of major endeavours allowing flexible, interactive analysis of the data available at the archives. These endeavours exploit a common infrastructure based upon modern interfaces such as JuypterLab and Python. The first service will enable reduction and analysis of precision radial velocity data from the HIRES Keck instrument. The Exoplanet Archive is developing a JuypterLab environment based on the HIRES PRV interactive environment. Additionally, KOA is supporting an Observatory initiative to develop modern, Python based pipelines, and as part of this work, it has delivered a NIRSPEC reduction pipeline. The ensemble of pipelines will be accessible through the same environments.

  11. Philosophy of astrobiology: some recent developments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kolb, Vera M.

    2015-09-01

    We present some recent developments in philosophy of astrobiology which illustrate usefulness of philosophy to astrobiology. We cover applications of Aristotelian views to definition of life, of Priest's dialetheism to the question if viruses are alive, and various thought experiments in regard to these and other astrobiology issues. Thought experiments about the survival of life in the Solar system and about the role of viruses at the beginning and towards the end of life are also described.

  12. NASA's Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute: Science and Technology for Lunar Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, Greg; Bailey, Brad; Gibbs, Kristina

    2015-01-01

    The NASA Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI) is a virtual institute focused on research at the intersection of science and exploration, training the next generation of lunar scientists, and development and support of the international community. As part of its mission, SSERVI acts as a hub for opportunities that engage the larger scientific and exploration communities in order to form new interdisciplinary, research-focused collaborations. The nine domestic SSERVI teams that comprise the U.S. complement of the Institute engage with the international science and exploration communities through workshops, conferences, online seminars and classes, student exchange programs and internships. SSERVI represents a close collaboration between science, technology and exploration enabling a deeper, integrated understanding of the Moon and other airless bodies as human exploration moves beyond low Earth orbit. SSERVI centers on the scientific aspects of exploration as they pertain to the Moon, Near Earth Asteroids (NEAs) and the moons of Mars, with additional aspects of related technology development, including a major focus on human exploration-enabling efforts such as resolving Strategic Knowledge Gaps (SKGs). The Institute focuses on interdisciplinary, exploration-related science focused on airless bodies targeted as potential human destinations. Areas of study represent the broad spectrum of lunar, NEA, and Martian moon sciences encompassing investigations of the surface, interior, exosphere, and near-space environments as well as science uniquely enabled from these bodies. This research profile integrates investigations of plasma physics, geology/geochemistry, technology integration, solar system origins/evolution, regolith geotechnical properties, analogues, volatiles, ISRU and exploration potential of the target bodies. New opportunities for both domestic and international partnerships are continually generated through these research and

  13. Lower Secondary Students' Views in Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansson, Lena; Redfors, Andreas

    2013-01-01

    Astrobiology is, on a profound level, about whether life exists outside of the planet Earth. The question of existence of life elsewhere in the universe has been of interest to many societies throughout history. Recently, the research area of astrobiology has grown at a fast rate, mainly due to the development of observational methods, and the…

  14. Field astrobiology research instruments and methods in moon-mars analogue site.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Foing, B.H.; Stoker, C.; Zavaleta, J.; Ehrenfreund, P.; Sarrazin, P.; Blake, D.; Page, J.; Pletser, V.; Hendrikse, J.; Oliveira Lebre Direito, M.S.; Kotler, M.; Martins, Z.; Orzechowska, G.; Thiel, C.S.; Clarke, J.; Gross, J.; Wendt, L.; Borst, A.; Peters, S.; Wilhelm, M.-B.; Davies, G.R.; EuroGeoMars 2009 Team, ILEWG

    2011-01-01

    We describe the field demonstration of astrobiology instruments and research methods conducted in and from the Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS) in Utah during the EuroGeoMars campaign 2009 coordinated by ILEWG, ESA/ESTEC and NASA Ames, with the contribution of academic partners. We discuss the

  15. NASA LWS Institute GIC Working Group: GIC science, engineering and applications readiness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pulkkinen, A. A.; Thomson, A. W. P.; Bernabeu, E.

    2016-12-01

    In recognition of the rapidly growing interest on the topic, this paper is based on the findings of the very first NASA Living With a Star (LWS) Institute Working Group that was specifically targeting the GIC issue. The new LWS Institutes program element was launched 2014 and the concept is built around small working group style meetings that focus on well defined problems that demand intense, direct interactions between colleagues in neighboring disciplines to facilitate the development of a deeper understanding of the variety of processes that link the solar activity to Earth's environment. The LWS Institute Geomagnetically Induced Currents (GIC) Working Group (WG) led by A. Pulkkinen (NASA GSFC) and co-led by E. Bernabeu (PJM) and A. Thomson (BGS) was selected competitively as the pilot activity for the new LWS element. The GIC WG was tasked to 1) identify, advance, and address the open scientific and engineering questions pertaining to GIC, 2) advance predictive modeling of GIC, 3) advocate and act as a catalyst to identify resources for addressing the multidisciplinary topic of GIC. In this paper, we target the goal 1) of the GIC WG. More specifically, the goal of this paper is to review the current status and future challenges pertaining to science, engineering and applications of the GIC problem. Science is understood here as the basic space and Earth sciences research that allow improved understanding and physics-based modeling of physical processes behind GIC. Engineering in turn is understood here as the "impact" aspect of GIC. The impact includes any physical effects GIC may have on the performance of the manmade infrastructure. Applications is understood as the models, tools and activities that can provide actionable information to entities such as power systems operators for mitigating the effects of GIC and government for managing any potential consequences from GIC impact to critical infrastructure. In this sense, applications can be considered as

  16. Survey on astrobiology research and teaching activities within the United kingdom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dartnell, Lewis R; Burchell, Mark J

    2009-10-01

    While astrobiology is apparently growing steadily around the world, in terms of the number of researchers drawn into this interdisciplinary area and teaching courses provided for new students, there have been very few studies conducted to chart this expansion quantitatively. To address this deficiency, the Astrobiology Society of Britain (ASB) conducted a questionnaire survey of universities and research institutions nationwide to ascertain the current extent of astrobiology research and teaching in the UK. The aim was to provide compiled statistics and an information resource for those who seek research groups or courses of study, and to facilitate new interdisciplinary collaborations. The report here summarizes details gathered on 33 UK research groups, which involved 286 researchers (from undergraduate project students to faculty members). The survey indicates that around 880 students are taking university-level courses, with significant elements of astrobiology included, every year in the UK. Data are also presented on the composition of astrobiology students by their original academic field, which show a significant dominance of physics and astronomy students. This survey represents the first published systematic national assessment of astrobiological academic activity and indicates that this emerging field has already achieved a strong degree of penetration into the UK academic community.

  17. The Alsep Data Recovery Focus Group of NASA's Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagihara, S.; Lewis, L. R.; Nakamura, Y.; Williams, D. R.; Taylor, P. T.; Hills, H. K.; Kiefer, W. S.; Neal, C. R.; Schmidt, G. K.

    2014-12-01

    Astronauts on Apollo 12, 14, 15, 16, and 17 deployed instruments on the Moon for 14 geophysical experiments (passive & active seismic, heat flow, magnetics, etc.) from 1969 to 1972. These instruments were called Apollo Lunar Surface Experiments Packages (ALSEPs). ALSEPs kept transmitting data to the Earth until September 1977. When the observation program ended in 1977, a large portion of these data were not delivered to the National Space Science Data Center for permanent archive. In 2010, for the purpose of searching, recovering, preserving, and analyzing the data that were not previously archived, NASA's then Lunar Science Institute formed the ALSEP Data Recovery Focus Group. The group consists of current lunar researchers and those involved in the ALSEP design and data analysis in the 1960s and 1970s. Among the data not previously archived were the 5000+ 7-track open-reel tapes that recorded raw data from all the ALSEP instruments from April 1973 to February 1976 ('ARCSAV tapes'). These tapes went missing in the decades after Apollo. One of the major achievements of the group so far is that we have found 450 ARCSAV tapes from April to June 1975 and that we are extracting data from them. There are 3 other major achievements by the group. First, we have established a web portal at the Lunar and Planetary Institute, where ~700 ALSEP-related documents, totaling ~40,000 pages, have been digitally scanned and cataloged. Researchers can search and download these documents at www.lpi.usra.edu/ lunar/ALSEP/. Second, we have been retrieving notes and reports left behind by the now deceased/retired ALSEP investigators at their home institutions. Third, we have been re-analyzing the ALSEP data using the information from the recently recovered metadata (instrument calibration data, operation logs, etc.). Efforts are ongoing to get these data permanently archived in the Planetary Data System (PDS).

  18. Astrobiology Sample Analysis Program (ASAP) for Advanced Life Detection Instrumentation Development and Calibration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glavin, Daniel; Brinkerhoff, Will; Dworkin, Jason; Eigenbrode, Jennifer; Franz, Heather; Mahaffy, Paul; Stern, Jen; Blake, Daid; Sandford, Scott; Fries, marc; hide

    2008-01-01

    Scientific ground-truth measurements for near-term Mars missions, such as the 2009 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) mission, are essential for validating current in situ flight instrumentation and for the development of advanced instrumentation technologies for life-detection missions over the next decade. The NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI) has recently funded a consortium of researchers called the Astrobiology Sample Analysis Program (ASAP) to analyze an identical set of homogenized martian analog materials in a "round-robin" style using both state-of-the-art laboratory techniques as well as in-situ flight instrumentation including the SAM gas chromatograph mass spectrometer and CHEMIN X-ray diffraction/fluorescence instruments on MSL and the Urey and MOMA organic analyzer instruments under development for the 2013 ExoMars missions. The analog samples studied included an Atacama Desert soil from Chile, the Murchison meteorite, a gypsum sample from the 2007 AMASE Mars analog site, jarosite from Panoche Valley, CA, a hydrothermal sample from Rio Tinto, Spain, and a "blind" sample collected during the 2007 MSL slow-motion field test in New Mexico. Each sample was distributed to the team for analysis to: (1) determine the nature and inventory of organic compounds, (2) measure the bulk carbon and nitrogen isotopic composition, (3) investigate elemental abundances, mineralogy and matrix, and (4) search for biological activity. The experimental results obtained from the ASAP Mars analog research consortium will be used to build a framework for understanding the biogeochemistry of martian analogs, help calibrate current spaceflight instrumentation, and enhance the scientific return from upcoming missions.

  19. Is Humanity Doomed? Insights from Astrobiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seth D. Baum

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Astrobiology, the study of life in the universe, offers profound insights into human sustainability. However, astrobiology is commonly neglected in sustainability research. This paper develops three topics connecting astrobiology to sustainability: constraints on what zones in the universe are habitable, the absence of observations of extraterrestrial civilizations, and the physical fate of the universe. These topics have major implications for our thinking and action on sustainability. While we may not be doomed, we must take certain actions to sustain ourselves in this universe. The topics also suggest that our current sustainability efforts may be of literally galactic importance.

  20. The UK Centre for Astrobiology: A Virtual Astrobiology Centre. Accomplishments and Lessons Learned, 2011–2016

    OpenAIRE

    Cockell, Charles S.; Biller, Beth; Bryce, Casey; Cousins, Claire; Direito, Susana; Forgan, Duncan; Fox-Powell, Mark; Harrison, Jesse; Landenmark, Hanna; Nixon, Sophie; Payler, Samuel J.; Rice, Ken; Samuels, Toby; Schwendner, Petra; Stevens, Adam

    2018-01-01

    Abstract The UK Centre for Astrobiology (UKCA) was set up in 2011 as a virtual center to contribute to astrobiology research, education, and outreach. After 5 years, we describe this center and its work in each of these areas. Its research has focused on studying life in extreme environments, the limits of life on Earth, and implications for habitability elsewhere. Among its research infrastructure projects, UKCA has assembled an underground astrobiology laboratory that has hosted a deep subs...

  1. Astrobiology, discovery, and societal impact

    CERN Document Server

    Dick, Steven J

    2018-01-01

    The search for life in the universe, once the stuff of science fiction, is now a robust worldwide research program with a well-defined roadmap probing both scientific and societal issues. This volume examines the humanistic aspects of astrobiology, systematically discussing the approaches, critical issues, and implications of discovering life beyond Earth. What do the concepts of life and intelligence, culture and civilization, technology and communication mean in a cosmic context? What are the theological and philosophical implications if we find life - and if we do not? Steven J. Dick argues that given recent scientific findings, the discovery of life in some form beyond Earth is likely and so we need to study the possible impacts of such a discovery and formulate policies to deal with them. The remarkable and often surprising results are presented here in a form accessible to disciplines across the sciences, social sciences, and humanities.

  2. Terrestrial atmosphere, water and astrobiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Coradini M.

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Primitive life, defined as a chemical system capable to transfer its molecular information via self-replication and also capable to evolve, originated about 4 billion years ago from the processing of organic molecules by liquid water. Terrestrial atmosphere played a key role in the process by allowing the permanent presence of liquid water and by participating in the production of carbon-based molecules. Water molecules exhibit specific properties mainly due to a dense network of hydrogen bonds. The carbon-based molecules were either home made in the atmosphere and/or in submarine hydrothermal systems or delivered by meteorites and micrometeorites. The search for possible places beyond the earth where the trilogy atmosphere/water/life could exist is the main objective of astrobiology. Within the Solar System, exploration missions are dedicated to Mars, Europa, Titan and the icy bodies. The discovery of several hundreds of extrasolar planets opens the quest to the whole Milky Way.

  3. Astrobiology: The Case for Venus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.

    2003-01-01

    The scientific discipline of astrobiology addresses one of the most fundamental unanswered questions of science: are we alone? Is there life elsewhere in the universe, or is life unique to Earth? The field of astrobiology includes the study of the chemical precursors for life in the solar system; it also includes the search for both presently existing life and fossil signs of previously existing life elsewhere in our own solar system, as well as the search for life outside the solar system. Two of the promising environments within the solar system being currently considered are the surface of the planet Mars, and the hypothesized oceans underneath the ice covering the moon Europa. Both of these environments differ in several key ways from the environments where life is found on Earth; the Mars environment in most places too cold and at too low pressure for liquid water to be stable, and the sub-ice environment of Europa lacking an abundance of free energy in the form of sunlight. The only place in the solar system where we know that life exists today is the Earth. To look for life elsewhere in the solar system, one promising search strategy would be to find and study the environment in the solar system with conditions that are most similar to the environmental conditions where life thrives on the Earth. Specifically, we would like to study a location in the solar system with atmospheric pressure near one bar; temperature in the range where water is liquid, 0 to 100 C; abundant solar energy; and with the primary materials required for life, carbon, oxygen, nitrogen, and hydrogen, present. Other than the surface of the Earth, the only other place where these conditions exist is the atmosphere of Venus, at an altitude of about fifty kilometers above the surface.

  4. The O/OREOS Mission - Astrobiology in Low Earth Orbit. [Astrobiology in Low Earth Orbit

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ehrenfreund, P.; Ricco, A. J.; Squires, D.; Kitts, C.; Agasid, E.; Bramall, N.; Bryson, K.; Chittenden, J.; Conley, C.; Cook, A.; hide

    2014-01-01

    The O/OREOS (Organism/Organic Exposure to Orbital Stresses) nanosatellite is the first science demonstration spacecraft and flight mission of the NASA Astrobiology Small- Payloads Program (ASP). O/OREOS was launched successfully on November 19, 2010, to a high-inclination (72 deg), 650-km Earth orbit aboard a US Air Force Minotaur IV rocket from Kodiak, Alaska. O/OREOS consists of 3 conjoined cubesat (each 1000 cu cm) modules: (i) a control bus; (ii) the Space Environment Survivability of Living Organisms (SESLO) experiment; and (iii) the Space Environment Viability of Organics (SEVO) experiment. Among the innovative aspects of the O/OREOS mission are a real-time analysis of the photostability of organics and biomarkers and the collection of data on the survival and metabolic activity for microorganisms at 3 times during the 6-month mission. We report on the spacecraft characteristics, payload capabilities, and present operational phase and flight data from the O/OREOS mission. The science and technology rationale of O/OREOS supports NASA0s scientific exploration program by investigating the local space environment as well as space biology relevant to Moon and Mars missions. It also serves as a precursor for experiments on small satellites, the International Space Station (ISS), future free-flyers and lunar surface exposure facilities.

  5. Astrobiology, Mars Exploration and Lassen Volcanic National Park

    Science.gov (United States)

    Des Marais, David J.

    2015-01-01

    The search for evidence of life beyond Earth illustrates how the charters of NASA and the National Park Service share common ground. The mission of NPS is to preserve unimpaired the natural and cultural resources of the National Park System for the enjoyment, education and inspiration of this and future generations. NASA's Astrobiology program seeks to understand the origins, evolution and distribution of life in the universe, and it abides by the principles of planetary stewardship, public outreach, and education. We cannot subject planetary exploration destinations to Earthly biological contamination both for ethical reasons and to preserve their scientific value for astrobiology. We respond to the public's interest in the mysteries of life and the cosmos by honoring their desire to participate in the process of discovery. We involve youth in order to motivate career choices in science and technology and to perpetuate space exploration. The search for evidence of past life on Mars illustrates how the missions of NASA and NPS can become synergistic. Volcanic activity occurs on all rocky planets in our Solar System and beyond, and it frequently interacts with water to create hydrothermal systems. On Earth these systems are oases for microbial life. The Mars Exploration Rover Spirit has found evidence of extinct hydrothermal system in Gusev crater, Mars. Lassen Volcanic National Park provides a pristine laboratory for investigating how microorganisms can both thrive and leave evidence of their former presence in hydrothermal systems. NASA scientists, NPS interpretation personnel and teachers can collaborate on field-oriented programs that enhance Mars mission planning, engage students and the public in science and technology, and emphasize the ethics of responsible exploration.

  6. Science at the ends of the Earth: astrobiology field expeditions as outreach tools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Billings, Linda

    INTRODUCTION This paper will report on and evaluate communication, education, and outreach initiatives conducted in conjunction with NASA Astrobiology Science and Technology for Exploring Planets (ASTEP) field campaigns, addressing the costs and benefits of linking students, teachers, and other interested citizens with researchers in the field. This paper will highlight success stories, lessons learned, and promising practices regarding educational programs in scientific research environments. The Astrobiology Program in the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA's) Science Mission Directorate studies the origin, evolution, distribution, and future of life in the universe. Public interest in astrobiology is great, and advances in the field are rapid. Hence, the Astrobiology Program supports the widest possible dissemination of timely and useful information about scientific discoveries, technology development, new knowledge, and greater understanding produced by its investigators, employing an approach described as strategic communication planning. That is, the Astrobiology Program aims to integrate communication, education, and outreach into all aspects of program planning and execution. The Program encourages all of its investigators to contribute to the ongoing endeavor of informing public audiences about Astrobiology. The ASTEP element of the Astrobiology Program sponsors terrestrial field campaigns to further scientific research and technology development relevant to future solar system exploration missions. ASTEP science investigations are designed to further biological research in terrestrial environments analogous to those found on other planets, past or present. ASTEP sponsors the development of technologies to enable remote searches for, and identification of, life in extreme environments. ASTEP supports systems-level field campaigns designed to demonstrate and validate the science and technology in extreme environments on Earth. This

  7. Heterocyclic anions of astrobiological interest

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cole, Callie A.; Demarais, Nicholas J.; Bierbaum, Veronica M.; Yang, Zhibo; Snow, Theodore P.

    2013-01-01

    As more complex organic molecules are detected in the interstellar medium, the importance of heterocyclic molecules to astrobiology and the origin of life has become evident. 2-Aminothiazole and 2-aminooxazole have recently been suggested as important nucleotide precursors, highlighting azoles as potential prebiotic molecules. This study explores the gas-phase chemistry of three deprotonated azoles: oxazole, thiazole, and isothiazole. For the first time, their gas-phase acidities are experimentally determined with bracketing and H/D exchange techniques, and their reactivity is characterized with several detected interstellar neutral molecules (N 2 O, O 2 , CO, OCS, CO 2 , and SO 2 ) and other reactive species (CS 2 , CH 3 Cl, (CH 3 ) 3 CCl, and (CH 3 ) 3 CBr). Rate constants and branching fractions for these reactions are experimentally measured using a modified commercial ion trap mass spectrometer whose kinetic data are in good accord with those of a flowing afterglow apparatus reported here. Last, we have examined the fragmentation patterns of these deprotonated azoles to elucidate their destruction mechanisms in high-energy environments. All experimental data are supported and complemented by electronic structure calculations at the B3LYP/6-311++G(d,p) and MP2(full)/aug-cc-pVDZ levels of theory.

  8. Heterocyclic anions of astrobiological interest

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cole, Callie A.; Demarais, Nicholas J.; Bierbaum, Veronica M. [Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, 215 UCB, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO 80309 (United States); Yang, Zhibo [Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK 73019 (United States); Snow, Theodore P., E-mail: Callie.Cole@colorado.edu, E-mail: Nicholas.Demarais@colorado.edu, E-mail: Veronica.Bierbaum@colorado.edu, E-mail: Zhibo.Yang@ou.edu, E-mail: Theodore.Snow@colorado.edu [Department of Astrophysical and Planetary Sciences, 391 UCB, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO 80309 (United States)

    2013-12-20

    As more complex organic molecules are detected in the interstellar medium, the importance of heterocyclic molecules to astrobiology and the origin of life has become evident. 2-Aminothiazole and 2-aminooxazole have recently been suggested as important nucleotide precursors, highlighting azoles as potential prebiotic molecules. This study explores the gas-phase chemistry of three deprotonated azoles: oxazole, thiazole, and isothiazole. For the first time, their gas-phase acidities are experimentally determined with bracketing and H/D exchange techniques, and their reactivity is characterized with several detected interstellar neutral molecules (N{sub 2}O, O{sub 2}, CO, OCS, CO{sub 2}, and SO{sub 2}) and other reactive species (CS{sub 2}, CH{sub 3}Cl, (CH{sub 3}){sub 3}CCl, and (CH{sub 3}){sub 3}CBr). Rate constants and branching fractions for these reactions are experimentally measured using a modified commercial ion trap mass spectrometer whose kinetic data are in good accord with those of a flowing afterglow apparatus reported here. Last, we have examined the fragmentation patterns of these deprotonated azoles to elucidate their destruction mechanisms in high-energy environments. All experimental data are supported and complemented by electronic structure calculations at the B3LYP/6-311++G(d,p) and MP2(full)/aug-cc-pVDZ levels of theory.

  9. Galactic Habitable Zone and Astrobiological Complexity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vukotic, B.

    2012-12-01

    This is a short thesis description and for the sake of brevity most things are left out. For more details, those interested are further directed to the thesis related papers in this article reference list. Thesis itself is available at the University of Belgrade library "Svetozar Markovic" (Serbian version only). In this thesis we study the astrobiological history of the Galactic habitable zone through the means of numerical modeling. First group of simulations are unidimensional (time-axis) toy models examine the influence of global regulation mechanisms (gamma-ray bursts and supernovae) on temporal evolution of Galactic astrobiological complexity. It is shown that under the assumption of global regulation classical anti SETI arguments can be undermined. Second group of simulations are more complex bidimensional probabilistic cellular automata models of the Galactic thin disk. They confirm the findings of the toy models and give some insights into the spatial clustering of astrobiological complexity. As a new emerging multidisciplinary science the basic concepts of astrobiology are poorly understood and although all the simulations present here do not include some basic physics (such as Galactic kinematics and dynamics), the input parameters are somewhat arbitrary and could use a future refinement (such as the boundaries of the Galactic habitable zone). This is the cause for low weight and high uncertainty in the output results of the simulations. However, the probabilistic cellular automata has shown as a highly adaptable modeling platform that can simulate various class of astrobiological models with great ease.

  10. The AstroBiology Explorer (ABE) Mission Concept

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandford, Scott A.

    2004-01-01

    Infrared spectroscopy in the 2.5-16 micron range is a principle means by which organic compounds can be detected and identified in space via their vibrational transitions. Ground-based, airborne, and spaceborne IR spectral studies have already demonstrated that a significant fraction of the carbon in the interstellar medium (ISM) resides in the form of complex organic molecular species. Unfortunately, neither the distribution of these materials nor their genetic and evolutionary relationships with each other or their environments are well understood. The Astrobiology Explorer (ABE) is a MIDEX mission concept currently under study by a team of partners: NASA's Ames Research Center, Ball Aerospace and Technologies Corporation, and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. ABE will conduct IR spectroscopic observations to address outstanding important problems in astrobiology, astrochemistry, and astrophysics. The core observational program would make fundamental scientific progress in understanding (1) The evolution of ices and organic matter in dense molecular clouds and young forming stellar systems, (2) The chemical evolution of organic molecules in the ISM as they transition from AGB outflows to planetary nebulae to the general diffuse ISM to HII regions and dense clouds, (3) The distribution of organics in the diffuse ISM, (4) The nature of organics in the Solar System (in comets, asteroids, satellites), and (5) The nature and distribution of organics in local galaxies. The technical considerations of achieving these science objectives in a MIDEX-sized mission will be presented.

  11. AstroBiology Explorer Mission Concepts (ABE/ASPIRE)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandford, Scott; Ennico, Kimberly A.

    2006-01-01

    The AstroBiology Explorer (ABE) and the Astrobiology Space InfraRed Explorer (ASPIRE) Mission Concepts are two missions designed to address the questions (1) Where do we come from? and (2) Are we alone? as outlined in NASA s Origins Program using infrared spectroscopy to explore the identity, abundance, and distribution of molecules of astrobiological importance throughout the Universe. The ABE mission s observational program is focused on six tasks to: (1) Investigate the evolution of ice and organics in dense clouds and star formation regions, and the young stellar/planetary systems that form in them; (2) Measure the evolution of complex organic molecules in stellar outflows; (3) Study the organic composition of a wide variety of solar system objects including asteroids, comets, and the planets and their satellites; (4) Identify organic compounds in the diffuse interstellar medium and determine their distribution , abundance, and change with environment; (5) Detect and identify organic compounds in other galaxies and determine their dependence on galactic type; and (6) Measure deuterium enrichments in interstellar organics and use them as tracers of chemical processes. The ASPIRE mission s observational program expands upon ABE's core mission and adds tasks that (7) Address the role of silicates in interstellar organic chemistry; and (8) Use different resolution spectra to assess the relative roles and abundances of gas- and solid-state materials. ABE (ASPIRE) achieves these goals using a highly sensitive, cryogenically-cooled telescope in an Earth drift-away heliocentric orbit, armed with a suite of infrared spectrometers that cover the 2.5-20(40) micron spectral region at moderate spectral resolution (R>2000). ASPIRE's spectrometer complement also includes a high-resolution (R>25,000) module over the 4-8 micron spectral region. Both missions target lists are chosen to observe a statistically significant sample of a large number of objects of varied types in

  12. Astrobiology Results from ILEWG EuroMoonMars Analogue Field Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foing, Bernard H.

    . v’t Houd (8), A. Bruneau (6,9), M. Cross (6,7), V. Maivald (10), C. Orgel (6), A. Elsaesser (4), S.O.L. Direito (2,4), W.F.M. Röling (2), G.R. Davies (2); EuroGeoMars2009 Team, DOMMEX-ILEWG EuroMoonMars 2010-2013 Teams (1) ESA/ ESTEC, Postbus 299, 2200 AG Noordwik, NL; (2) Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, Faculty of Earth & Life Sciences, De Boelelaan 1085, 1081 HV Amsterdam, NL; (3) NASA Ames Research Centre; US; (4) Leiden Institute of Chemistry, NL; (5) Space Policy Institute, GWU, Washington D.C., USA; (6) ILEWG; (7) CPSX; (8) Cerberus Blackshore, ESIC Noordwijk, NL; (9) ENSC Bordeaux; (10) DLR, Bremen References: Foing, Stoker & Ehrenfreund (Editors, 2011) “Astrobiology field Research in Moon/Mars Analogue Environments”, Special Issue of International Journal of Astrobiology , IJA 2011, 10, vol.3. 137-305; [1] Foing B. et al. (2011) Field astrobiology research at Moon-Mars analogue site: Instruments and methods, IJA 2011, 10 (3), 141; [2] Clarke, J., Stoker, C. Concretions in exhumed & inverte channels near Hanksville Utah: implications for Mars, (IJA 2011, 10 (3), 162; [3] Thiel et al., (2011) PCR-based analysis of microbial communities during the EuroGeoMars campaign at Mars Desert Research Station, Utah. (IJA 2011, 10 (3), 177; [4] Direito et al. (2011). A wide variety of putative extremophiles and large beta-diversity at the Mars Desert Research Station (Utah). (IJA 2011, 10 (3), 191; [5] Orzechowska, G. et al (20110 analysis of Mars Analog soils using solid Phase Microextraction, Organics solvent extraction and GCMS, (IJA 2011, 10 (3), 209; [6] Kotler et al. (2011). Analysis of mineral matrices of planetary soils analogs from the Utah Desert. (IJA 2011, 10 (3), 221; [7] Martins et al. (2011). Extraction of amino acids from soils close to the Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS), Utah. (IJA 2011, 10 (3), 231; [8] Ehrenfreund et al. (2011) Astrobiology and habitability studies in preparation for future Mars missions: trends from investigating minerals

  13. Neocatastrophism and the milky way astrobiological landscape

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vukotić B.

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available The number and distribution of habitable planets in the Milky Way is one of the foremost problems of contemporary astrobiological research. We investigate the effects of applying general neocatastrophic paradigm to the evolution of the Galactic Habitable Zone. In this paper, we investigate the limits of simple, 1-dimensional astrobiological models, and consider the role of regulation mechanisms in shapening the 'astrobiological landscape'. We show that the transition from predominantly gradualist to predominantly (neocatastrophist history of our Galaxy leads to the build-up of large-scale correlations between habitable sites, offering possible keys to such important problems as Carter's 'anthropic' argument and Fermi's paradox. In addition, we consider the possibilities for extending the present class of models into spatially realistic 3-dimensional case via probabilistic cellular automata.

  14. Neocatastrophism and the Milky Way Astrobiological Landscape

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vukotić, B.

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available The number and distribution of habitable planets in the Milky Way is one of the foremost problems of contemporary astrobiological research. We investigate the effects of applying general neocatastrophic paradigm to the evolution of the Galactic Habitable Zone. In this paper, we investigate the limits of simple, 1-dimensional astrobiological models, and consider the role of regulation mechanisms in shapening the "astrobiological landscape". We show that the transition from predominantly gradualist to predominantly (neocatastrophist history of our Galaxy leads to the build-up of large-scale correlations between habitable sites, offering possible keys to such important problems as Carter's "anthropic" argument and Fermi's paradox. In addition, we consider the possibilities for extending the present class of models into spatially realistic 3-dimensional case via probabilistic cellular automata.

  15. Miniature GC: Minicell ion mobility spectrometer (IMS) for astrobiology planetary missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kojiro, Daniel R.; Holland, Paul M.; Stimac, Robert M.; Kaye, William J.; Takeuchi, Norishige

    2006-01-01

    Astrobiology flight experiments require highly sensitive instrumentation for in situ analysis of volatile chemical species and minerals present in the atmospheres and surfaces of planets, moons, and asteroids. The complex mixtures encountered place a heavy burden on the analytical instrumentation to detect and identify all species present. The use of land rovers and balloon aero-rovers place additional emphasis on miniaturization of the analytical instrumentation. In addition, smaller instruments, using tiny amounts of consumables, allow the use of more instrumentation and/or longer mission life for stationary landers/laboratories. We describe here the development of a miniature GC - Minicell Ion Mobility Spectrometer (IMS) under development through NASA's Astrobiology Science and Technology Instrument Development (ASTID) Program and NASA's Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) Program.

  16. Year 3 LUNAR Annual Report to the NASA Lunar Science Institute

    OpenAIRE

    Burns, Jack; Lazio, Joseph

    2012-01-01

    The Lunar University Network for Astrophysics Research (LUNAR) is a team of researchers and students at leading universities, NASA centers, and federal research laboratories undertaking investigations aimed at using the Moon as a platform for space science. LUNAR research includes Lunar Interior Physics & Gravitation using Lunar Laser Ranging (LLR), Low Frequency Cosmology and Astrophysics (LFCA), Planetary Science and the Lunar Ionosphere, Radio Heliophysics, and Exploration Science. The LUN...

  17. Astrobiology: Life on Earth (and Elsewhere?)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Des Marais, David J.

    2016-01-01

    Astrobiology investigates the origins, evolution and distribution of life in the universe. Scientists study how stellar systems and their planets can create planetary environments that sustain biospheres. They search for biosignatures, which are objects, substances and or patterns that indicate the presence of life. Studies of Earth's early biosphere enhance these search strategies and also provide key insights about our own origins.

  18. Astrobiology: Discovering New Worlds of Life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    James, Charles C.; Van Dover, Cindy Lee

    2001-01-01

    Emphasizes discoveries at the frontiers of science. Includes an instructional poster illustrating the hydrothermal vent communities on the deep ocean floor. Describes research activities related to the new discipline of astrobiology, a multidisciplinary approach to studying the emergence of life in the universe. Research activities include the…

  19. Lunar and Planetary Science XXXV: Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    2004-01-01

    The session "Astrobiology" included the following reports:The Role of Cometary and Meteoritic Delivery in the Origin and Evolution of Life: Biogeological Evidences Revisited; Hopane Biomarkers Traced from Bedrock to Recent Sediments and Ice at the Haughton Impact Structure, Devon Island: Implications for the Search for Biomarkers on Mars; and Survival of Organic Matter After High Temperature Events (Meteorite Impacts, Igneous Intrusions).

  20. The First National Student Conference: NASA University Research Centers at Minority Institutions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daso, Endwell O. (Editor); Mebane, Stacie (Editor)

    1997-01-01

    The conference includes contributions from 13 minority universities with NASA University Research Centers. Topics discussed include: leadership, survival strategies, life support systems, food systems, simulated hypergravity, chromium diffusion doping, radiation effects on dc-dc converters, metal oxide glasses, crystal growth of Bil3, science and communication on wheels, semiconductor thin films, numerical solution of random algebraic equations, fuzzy logic control, spatial resolution of satellite images, programming language development, nitric oxide in the thermosphere and mesosphere, high performance polyimides, crossover control in genetic algorithms, hyperthermal ion scattering, etc.

  1. Astrobiology undergraduate education: students' knowledge and perceptions of the field.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foster, Jamie S; Drew, Jennifer C

    2009-04-01

    With the field of astrobiology continually evolving, it has become increasingly important to develop and maintain an educational infrastructure for the next generation of astrobiologists. In addition to developing more courses and programs for students, it is essential to monitor the learning experiences and progress of students taking these astrobiology courses. At the University of Florida, a new pilot course in astrobiology was developed that targeted undergraduate students with a wide range of scientific backgrounds. Pre- and post-course surveys along with knowledge assessments were used to evaluate the students' perceived and actual learning experiences. The class incorporated a hybrid teaching platform that included traditional in-person and distance learning technologies. Results indicate that undergraduate students have little prior knowledge of key astrobiology concepts; however, post-course testing demonstrated significant improvements in the students' comprehension of astrobiology. Improvements were not limited to astrobiology knowledge. Assessments revealed that students developed confidence in science writing as well as reading and understanding astrobiology primary literature. Overall, student knowledge of and attitudes toward astrobiological research dramatically increased during this course, which demonstrates the ongoing need for additional astrobiology education programs as well as periodic evaluations of those programs currently underway. Together, these approaches serve to improve the overall learning experiences and perceptions of future astrobiology researchers.

  2. New FINESSE Faculty Institutes for NASA Earth and Space Science Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slater, Timothy F.; Slater, Stephanie; Marshall, Sunette Sophia; Stork, Debra; Pomeroy, J. Richard R

    2014-06-01

    In a systematic effort to improve the preparation of future science teachers, scholars coordinated by the CAPER Center for Astronomy & Physics Education Research are providing a series of high-quality, 2-day professional development workshops, with year-round follow-up support, for college and university professors who prepare future science teachers to work with highly diverse student populations. These workshops focus on reforming and revitalizing undergraduate science teaching methods courses and Earth and Space science content courses that future teachers most often take to reflect contemporary pedagogies and data-rich problem-based learning approaches steeped in authentic scientific inquiry, which consistently demonstrate effectiveness with diverse students. Participants themselves conduct science data-rich research projects during the institutes using highly regarded approaches to inquiry using proven models. In addition, the Institute allocates significant time to illustrating best practices for working with diverse students. Moreover, participants leave with a well-formulated action plan to reform their courses targeting future teachers to include more data-rich scientific inquiry lessons and to be better focused on improving science education for a wide diversity of students. Through these workshops faculty use a backwards faded scaffolding mechanism for working inquiry into a deeper understanding of science by using existing on-line data to develop and research astronomy, progressing from creating a valid and easily testable question, to simple data analysis, arriving at a conclusion, and finally presenting and supporting that conclusion in the classroom. An updated schedule is available at FINESSEProgram.org

  3. Extremophiles: Link between earth and astrobiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stojanović Dejan B.

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Astrobiology studies the origin, evolution, distribution and future of life in the universe. The most promising worlds in Solar system, beyond Earth, which may harbor life are Mars and Jovian moon Europa. Extremophiles are organisms that thrive on the edge of temperature, hypersalinity, pH extremes, pressure, dryness and so on. In this paper, some extremophile cyanobacteria have been discussed as possible life forms in a scale of astrobiology. Samples were taken from solenetz and solonchak types of soil from the Vojvodina region. The main idea in this paper lies in the fact that high percentage of salt found in solonchak and solonetz gives the possibility of comparison these types of soil with 'soil' on Mars, which is also rich in salt.

  4. Miniature GC-Minicell Ion Mobility Spectrometer (IMS) for In Situ Measurements in Astrobiology Planetary Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kojiro, Daniel R.; Stimac, Robert M.; Kaye, William J.; Holland, Paul M.; Takeuchi, Norishige

    2006-01-01

    Astrobiology flight experiments require highly sensitive instrumentation for in situ analysis of volatile chemical species and minerals present in the atmospheres and surfaces of planets, moons, and asteroids. The complex mixtures encountered place a heavy burden on the analytical instrumentation to detect and identify all species present. The use of land rovers and balloon aero-rovers place additional emphasis on miniaturization of the analytical instrumentation. In addition, smaller instruments, using tiny amounts of consumables, allow the use of more instrumentation and/or ionger mission life for stationary landers/laboratories. The miniCometary Ice and Dust Experiment (miniCIDEX), which combined Gas Chromatography (GC) with helium Ion Mobility Spectrometry (IMS), was capable of providing the wide range of analytical information required for Astrobiology missions. The IMS used here was based on the PCP model 111 IMS. A similar system, the Titan Ice and Dust Experiment (TIDE), was proposed as part of the Titan Orbiter Aerorover Mission (TOAM). Newer GC systems employing Micro Electro- Mechanical System (MEMS) based technology have greatly reduced both the size and resource requirements for space GCs. These smaller GCs, as well as the continuing miniaturization of Astrobiology analytical instruments in general, has highlighted the need for smaller, dry helium IMS systems. We describe here the development of a miniature, MEMS GC-IMS system (MEMS GC developed by Thorleaf Research Inc.), employing the MiniCell Ion Mobility Spectrometer (IMS), from Ion Applications Inc., developed through NASA's Astrobiology Science and Technology Instrument Development (ASTID) Program and NASA s Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) Program.

  5. Astrobiology Learning Progressions: Linking Astrobiology Concepts with the 3D Learning Paradigm of NGSS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scalice, D.; Davis, H. B.; Leach, D.; Chambers, N.

    2016-12-01

    The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) introduce a Framework for teaching and learning with three interconnected "dimensions:" Disciplinary Core Ideas (DCI's), Cross-cutting Concepts (CCC's), and Science and Engineering Practices (SEP's). This "3D" Framework outlines progressions of learning from K-12 based on the DCI's, detailing which parts of a concept should be taught at each grade band. We used these discipline-based progressions to synthesize interdisciplinary progressions for core concepts in astrobiology, such as the origins of life, what makes a world habitable, biosignatures, and searching for life on other worlds. The final product is an organizing tool for lesson plans, learning media, and other educational materials in astrobiology, as well as a fundamental resource in astrobiology education that serves both educators and scientists as they plan and carry out their programs for learners.

  6. Engaging Students and Teachers in Immersive Learning Experiences Alongside NASA Scientists and With Support from Institutional Partnerships

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, A. P.; Bleacher, L.; Glotch, T. D.; Heldmann, J. L.; Bleacher, J. E.; Young, K. E.; Selvin, B.; Firstman, R.; Lim, D. S. S.; Johnson, S. S.; Kobs-Nawotniak, S. E.; Hughes, S. S.

    2015-12-01

    The Remote, In Situ, and Synchrotron Studies for Science and Exploration (RIS4E) and Field Investigations to Enable Solar System Science and Exploration (FINESSE) teams of NASA's Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute conduct research that will help us more safely and effectively explore the Moon, Near Earth Asteroids, and the moons of Mars. These teams are committed to making their scientific research accessible and to using their research as a lens through which students and teachers can better understand the process of science. In partnership with the Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science at Stony Brook University, in spring of 2015 the RIS4E team offered a semester-long course on science journalism that culminated in a 10-day reporting trip to document scientific fieldwork in action during the 2015 RIS4E field campaign on the Big Island of Hawaii. Their work is showcased on ReportingRIS4E.com. The RIS4E science journalism course is helping to prepare the next generation of science journalists to accurately represent scientific research in a way that is appealing and understandable to the public. It will be repeated in 2017. Students and teachers who participate in FINESSE Spaceward Bound, a program offered in collaboration with the Idaho Space Grant Consortium, conduct science and exploration research in Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve. Side-by-side with NASA researchers, they hike through lava flows, operate field instruments, participate in science discussions, and contribute to scientific publications. Teachers learn about FINESSE science in the field, and bring it back to their classrooms with support from educational activities and resources. The second season of FINESSE Spaceward Bound is underway in 2015. We will provide more information about the RIS4E and FINESSE education programs and discuss the power of integrating educational programs within scientific programs, the strength institutional partnerships can

  7. Planetary and Space Simulation Facilities PSI at DLR for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rabbow, E.; Rettberg, P.; Panitz, C.; Reitz, G.

    2008-09-01

    Ground based experiments, conducted in the controlled planetary and space environment simulation facilities PSI at DLR, are used to investigate astrobiological questions and to complement the corresponding experiments in LEO, for example on free flying satellites or on space exposure platforms on the ISS. In-orbit exposure facilities can only accommodate a limited number of experiments for exposure to space parameters like high vacuum, intense radiation of galactic and solar origin and microgravity, sometimes also technically adapted to simulate extraterrestrial planetary conditions like those on Mars. Ground based experiments in carefully equipped and monitored simulation facilities allow the investigation of the effects of simulated single environmental parameters and selected combinations on a much wider variety of samples. In PSI at DLR, international science consortia performed astrobiological investigations and space experiment preparations, exposing organic compounds and a wide range of microorganisms, reaching from bacterial spores to complex microbial communities, lichens and even animals like tardigrades to simulated planetary or space environment parameters in pursuit of exobiological questions on the resistance to extreme environments and the origin and distribution of life. The Planetary and Space Simulation Facilities PSI of the Institute of Aerospace Medicine at DLR in Köln, Germany, providing high vacuum of controlled residual composition, ionizing radiation of a X-ray tube, polychromatic UV radiation in the range of 170-400 nm, VIS and IR or individual monochromatic UV wavelengths, and temperature regulation from -20°C to +80°C at the sample size individually or in selected combinations in 9 modular facilities of varying sizes are presented with selected experiments performed within.

  8. The AGI-ASU-NASA Triad Program for K-12 Earth and Space Science Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pacheco, H. A.; Semken, S. C.; Taylor, W.; Benbow, A. E.

    2011-12-01

    The NASA Triad program of the American Geological Institute (AGI) and Arizona State University School of Earth and Space Exploration (ASU SESE) is a three-part effort to promote Earth and space science literacy and STEM education at the national level, funded by NASA through a cooperative agreement starting in 2010. NASA Triad comprises (1) infusion of NASA STEM content into AGI's secondary Earth science curricula; (2) national lead teacher professional development workshops; and (3) an online professional development guide for teachers running NASA STEM workshops. The Triad collaboration draws on AGI's inquiry-based curriculum and teacher professional-development resources and workforce-building programs; ASU SESE's spectrum of research in Mars and Moon exploration, astrobiology, meteoritics, Earth systems, and cyberlearning; and direct access to NASA facilities and dynamic education resources. Triad milestones to date include integration of NASA resources into AGI's print and online curricula and two week-long, national-scale, teacher-leader professional development academies in Earth and space sciences presented at ASU Dietz Museum in Tempe and NASA Johnson Space Flight Center in Houston. Robust front-end and formative assessments of these program components, including content gains, teacher-perceived classroom relevance, teacher-cohort lesson development, and teacher workshop design, have been conducted. Quantitative and qualitative findings from these assessment activities have been applied to identify best and most effective practices, which will be disseminated nationally and globally through AGI and NASA channels.

  9. Astrobiology, Evolution, and Society: Public Engagement Insights

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertka, C. M.

    2009-12-01

    It is unavoidable that the science of astrobiology will intersect with, and inevitably challenge, many deeply held beliefs. Exploration possibilities, particularly those that may include the discovery of extraterrestrial life, will continue to challenge us to reconsider our views of nature and our connection to the rest of the universe. As a scientific discipline, astrobiology works from the assumption that the origin and evolution of life can be accounted for by natural processes, that life could emerge naturally from the physical materials that make up the terrestrial planets. The search for life on other terrestrial planets is focused on “life as we know it.” The only life we currently know of is the life found on Earth, and for the scientific community the shared common ancestry of all Earth life, and its astounding diversity, is explained by the theory of evolution. The work of astrobiology, at its very core, is fueled by the theory of evolution. However, a survey by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life (2005) revealed that 42% of US adults believe that “life has existed in its present form since the beginning of time”. This answer persists nearly 150 years after the publication of Charles Darwin’s "On the Origin of the Species", the landmark work in which Darwin proposed that living things share common ancestors and have “descended with modification” from these ancestors through a process of natural selection . Perhaps even more distressing is the fact that these numbers have not changed in decades, despite the astounding advancements in science that have resulted over this same time period. How will these facts bear on the usefulness of astrobiology as a tool for encouraging a US public to share in the excitement of scientific discovery and be informed participants in a public dialogue concerning next steps? When people were asked “to identify the biggest influence on your thinking about how life developed,” the response chosen most

  10. Capturing Student Interest in Astrobiology through Dilemmas and Paradoxes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slater, Timothy F.

    2006-01-01

    Astrobiology is an interdisciplinary science course that combines essential questions from life, physical, and Earth sciences. An effective astrobiology course also capitalizes on students' natural curiosity about social science implications of studying the origin of life and the impact of finding life elsewhere in the universe. (Contains 2…

  11. STARLIFE - An International Campaign to Study the Role of Galactic Cosmic Radiation in Astrobiological Model Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moeller, Ralf; Raguse, Marina; Leuko, Stefan; Berger, Thomas; Hellweg, Christine Elisabeth; Fujimori, Akira; Okayasu, Ryuichi; Horneck, Gerda

    2017-02-01

    In-depth knowledge regarding the biological effects of the radiation field in space is required for assessing the radiation risks in space. To obtain this knowledge, a set of different astrobiological model systems has been studied within the STARLIFE radiation campaign during six irradiation campaigns (2013-2015). The STARLIFE group is an international consortium with the aim to investigate the responses of different astrobiological model systems to the different types of ionizing radiation (X-rays, γ rays, heavy ions) representing major parts of the galactic cosmic radiation spectrum. Low- and high-energy charged particle radiation experiments have been conducted at the Heavy Ion Medical Accelerator in Chiba (HIMAC) facility at the National Institute of Radiological Sciences (NIRS) in Chiba, Japan. X-rays or γ rays were used as reference radiation at the German Aerospace Center (DLR, Cologne, Germany) or Beta-Gamma-Service GmbH (BGS, Wiehl, Germany) to derive the biological efficiency of different radiation qualities. All samples were exposed under identical conditions to the same dose and qualities of ionizing radiation (i) allowing a direct comparison between the tested specimens and (ii) providing information on the impact of the space radiation environment on currently used astrobiological model organisms.

  12. IRON-TOLERANT CYANOBACTERIA: IMPLICATIONS FOR ASTROBIOLOGY

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Igor I.; Allen, Carlton C.; Mummey, Daniel L.; Sarkisova, Svetlana A.; McKay, David S.

    2006-01-01

    The review is dedicated to the new group of extremophiles - iron tolerant cyanobacteria. The authors have analyzed earlier published articles about the ecology of iron tolerant cyanobacteria and their diversity. It was concluded that contemporary iron depositing hot springs might be considered as relative analogs of Precambrian environment. The authors have concluded that the diversity of iron-tolerant cyanobacteria is understudied. The authors also analyzed published data about the physiological peculiarities of iron tolerant cyanobacteria. They made the conclusion that iron tolerant cyanobacteria may oxidize reduced iron through the photosystem of cyanobacteria. The involvement of both Reaction Centers 1 and 2 is also discussed. The conclusion that iron tolerant protocyanobacteria could be involved in banded iron formations generation is also proposed. The possible mechanism of the transition from an oxygenic photosynthesis to an oxygenic one is also discussed. In the final part of the review the authors consider the possible implications of iron tolerant cyanobacteria for astrobiology.

  13. An Astrobiological View on Sustainable Life

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takeshi Naganuma

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Life on a global biosphere basis is substantiated in the form of organics and organisms, and defined as the intermediate forms (briefly expressed as CH2O hovering between the reduced (CH4, methane and (CO2, carbon dioxide ends, different from the classical definition of life as a complex organization maintaining ordered structure and information. Both definitions consider sustenance of life meant as protection of life against chaos through an input of external energy. The CH2O-life connection is maintained as long as the supply of H and O lasts, which is in turn are provided by the splitting of the water molecule H2O. Water is split by electricity, as well-known from school-level experiments, and by solar radiation and geothermal heat on a global scale. In other words, the Sun’s radiation and the Earth’s heat as well as radioactivity split water to supply H and O for continued existence of life on the Earth. These photochemical, radiochemical and geothermal processes have influences on the evolution and current composition of the Earth’s atmosphere, compared with those of Venus and Mars, and influences on the planetary climatology. This view of life may be applicable to the “search-for-life in space” and to sustainability assessment of astrobiological habitats.

  14. Astrobiology: An astronomer's perspective

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bergin, Edwin A.

    2014-01-01

    In this review we explore aspects of the field of astrobiology from an astronomical viewpoint. We therefore focus on the origin of life in the context of planetary formation, with additional emphasis on tracing the most abundant volatile elements, C, H, O, and N that are used by life on Earth. We first explore the history of life on our planet and outline the current state of our knowledge regarding the delivery of the C, H, O, N elements to the Earth. We then discuss how astronomers track the gaseous and solid molecular carriers of these volatiles throughout the process of star and planet formation. It is now clear that the early stages of star formation fosters the creation of water and simple organic molecules with enrichments of heavy isotopes. These molecules are found as ice coatings on the solid materials that represent microscopic beginnings of terrestrial worlds. Based on the meteoritic and cometary record, the process of planet formation, and the local environment, lead to additional increases in organic complexity. The astronomical connections towards this stage are only now being directly made. Although the exact details are uncertain, it is likely that the birth process of star and planets likely leads to terrestrial worlds being born with abundant water and organics on the surface

  15. Astrobiology: An astronomer's perspective

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bergin, Edwin A. [University of Michigan, Department of Astronomy, 500 Church Street, Ann Arbor, MI 48109 (United States)

    2014-12-08

    In this review we explore aspects of the field of astrobiology from an astronomical viewpoint. We therefore focus on the origin of life in the context of planetary formation, with additional emphasis on tracing the most abundant volatile elements, C, H, O, and N that are used by life on Earth. We first explore the history of life on our planet and outline the current state of our knowledge regarding the delivery of the C, H, O, N elements to the Earth. We then discuss how astronomers track the gaseous and solid molecular carriers of these volatiles throughout the process of star and planet formation. It is now clear that the early stages of star formation fosters the creation of water and simple organic molecules with enrichments of heavy isotopes. These molecules are found as ice coatings on the solid materials that represent microscopic beginnings of terrestrial worlds. Based on the meteoritic and cometary record, the process of planet formation, and the local environment, lead to additional increases in organic complexity. The astronomical connections towards this stage are only now being directly made. Although the exact details are uncertain, it is likely that the birth process of star and planets likely leads to terrestrial worlds being born with abundant water and organics on the surface.

  16. An Astrobiological View on Sustainable Life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naganuma, Takeshi

    2009-10-01

    Life on a global biosphere basis is substantiated in the form of organics and organisms, and defined as the intermediate forms (briefly expressed as CH2O) hovering between the reduced (CH4, methane) and (CO2, carbon dioxide) ends, different from the classical definition of life as a complex organization maintaining ordered structure and information. Both definitions consider sustenance of life meant as protection of life against chaos through an input of external energy. The CH2O-life connection is maintained as long as the supply of H and O lasts, which is in turn are provided by the splitting of the water molecule H2O. Water is split by electricity, as well-known from school-level experiments, and by solar radiation and geothermal heat on a global scale. In other words, the Sun's radiation and the Earth's heat as well as radioactivity split water to supply H and O for continued existence of life on the Earth. These photochemical, radiochemical and geothermal processes have influences on the evolution and current composition of the Earth's atmosphere, compared with those of Venus and Mars, and influences on the planetary climatology. This view of life may be applicable to the "search-for-life in space" and to sustainability assessment of astrobiological habitats.

  17. NASA Earth Systems, Technology and Energy Education for Minority University and Research Education Program Promotes Climate Literacy by Engaging Students at Minority Serving Institutions in STEM

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murray, B.; Alston, E. J.; Chambers, L. H.; Bynum, A.; Montgomery, C.; Blue, S.; Kowalczak, C.; Leighton, A.; Bosman, L.

    2017-12-01

    NASA Earth Systems, Technology and Energy Education for Minority University Research & Education Program - MUREP (ESTEEM) activities enhance institutional capacity of minority serving institutions (MSIs) related to Earth System Science, Technology and energy education; in turn, increasing access of underrepresented groups to science careers and opportunities. ESTEEM is a competitive portfolio that has been providing funding to institutions across the United States for 10 years. Over that time 76 separate activities have been funded. Beginning in 2011 ESTEEM awards focused on MSIs and public-school districts with high under-represented enrollment. Today ESTEEM awards focus on American Indian/Alaska Native serving institutions (Tribal Colleges and Universities), the very communities most severely in need of ability to deal with climate adaptation and resiliency. ESTEEM engages a multi-faceted approach to address economic and cultural challenges facing MSI communities. PIs (Principal Investigators) receive support from a management team at NASA, and are supported by a larger network, the ESTEEM Cohort, which connects regularly through video calls, virtual video series and in-person meetings. The cohort acts as a collective unit to foster interconnectivity and knowledge sharing in both physical and virtual settings. ESTEEM partners with NASA's Digital Learning Network (DLNTM) in a unique non-traditional model to leverage technical expertise. DLN services over 10,000 participants each year through interactive web-based synchronous and asynchronous events. These events allow for cost effective (no travel) engagement of multiple, geographically dispersed audiences to share local experiences with one another. Events allow PIs to grow their networks, technical base, professional connections, and develop a sense of community, encouraging expansion into larger and broader interactions. Over 256 connections, beyond the 76 individual members, exist within the cohort. PIs report

  18. Astrobiology in culture: the search for extraterrestrial life as "science".

    Science.gov (United States)

    Billings, Linda

    2012-10-01

    This analysis examines the social construction of authority, credibility, and legitimacy for exobiology/astrobiology and, in comparison, the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI), considering English-language conceptions of these endeavors in scientific culture and popular culture primarily in the United States. The questions that define astrobiology as a scientific endeavor are multidisciplinary in nature, and this endeavor is broadly appealing to public audiences as well as to the scientific community. Thus, it is useful to examine astrobiology in culture-in scientific culture, official culture, and popular culture. A researcher may explore science in culture, science as culture, by analyzing its rhetoric, the primary means that people use to construct their social realities-their cultural environment, as it were. This analysis follows this path, considering scientific and public interest in astrobiology and SETI and focusing on scientific and official constructions of the two endeavors. This analysis will also consider whether and how scientific and public conceptions of astrobiology and SETI, which are related but at the same time separate endeavors, converge or diverge and whether and how these convergences or divergences affect the scientific authority, credibility, and legitimacy of these endeavors.

  19. Tanpopo: Astrobiology Exposure and Micrometeoroid Capture Experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamagishi, Akihiko; Yano, Hajime; Yamashita, Masamichi; Hashimoto, Hirofumi; Kobayashi, Kensei; Kawai, Hideyuki; Mita, Hajime; Yokobori, Shin-ichi; Tabata, Makoto; Yabuta, Hikaru

    2012-07-01

    There is a long history of the microbe-collection experiments at high altitude (1). Microbes have been collected using balloons, aircraft and meteorological rockets. Spore forming fungi and Bacilli, and Micrococci have been isolated in these experiments (1). It is not clear how high do microbes go up. If the microbes might have been present even at higher altitudes, the fact would endorse the possibility of interplanetary migration of life. Tanpopo, dandelion, is the name of a grass whose seeds with floss are spread by the wind. We propose the analyses of interplanetary migration of microbes, organic compounds and meteoroids on Japan Experimental Module (JEM) of the International Space Station (ISS) (2). Ultra low-density aerogel will be used to capture micrometeoroid and debris. Particles captured by aerogel will be used for several analyses after the initial inspection of the gel and tracks. Careful analysis of the tracks in the aerogel will provide the size and velocity dependence of debris flux. The particles will be analyzed for mineralogical, organic and microbiological characteristics. Aerogels are ready for production in Japan. Aerogels and trays are space proven. All the analytical techniques are ready. In this presentation, we will present the recent results related to the microbiological analyses. The results suggested that the bleaching speeds and the spectra of fluorescence are different between different origins of the fluorescence: whether it is emitted from microbe or not. It is also shown that PCR analysis of the microbe can be used to determine the species. References 1)Yang, Y., Yokobori, S. and Yamagishi, A.: Assessing panspermia hypothesis by microorganisms collected from the high altitude atmosphere. Biol. Sci. Space, 23 (2009), pp. 151-163. 2) Yamagishi, A., H. Yano, K. Kobayashi, K. Kobayashi, S. Yokobori, M. Tabata, H. Kawai, M. Yamashita, H. Hashimoto, H. Naraoka, & H. Mita (2008) TANPOPO: astrobiology exposure and micrometeoroid capture

  20. Lunar astrobiology: a review and suggested laboratory equipment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gronstal, Aaron; Cockell, Charles S; Perino, Maria Antonietta; Bittner, Tobias; Clacey, Erik; Clark, Olathe; Ingold, Olivier; Alves de Oliveira, Catarina; Wathiong, Steven

    2007-10-01

    In October of 2005, the European Space Agency (ESA) and Alcatel Alenia Spazio released a "call to academia for innovative concepts and technologies for lunar exploration." In recent years, interest in lunar exploration has increased in numerous space programs around the globe, and the purpose of our study, in response to the ESA call, was to draw on the expertise of researchers and university students to examine science questions and technologies that could support human astrobiology activity on the Moon. In this mini review, we discuss astrobiology science questions of importance for a human presence on the surface of the Moon and we provide a summary of key instrumentation requirements to support a lunar astrobiology laboratory.

  1. Astrobiology Field Research in Moon/Mars Analogue Environments: Preface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foing, B. H.; Stoker, C.; Ehrenfreund, P.

    2011-01-01

    Extreme environments on Earth often provide similar terrain conditions to landing/operation sites on Moon and Mars. Several field campaigns (EuroGeoMars2009 and DOMMEX/ILEWG EuroMoonMars from November 2009 to March 2010) were conducted at the Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS) in Utah. Some of the key astrobiology results are presented in this special issue on Astrobiology field research in Moon/Mars analogue environments relevant to investigate the link between geology, minerals, organics and biota. Preliminary results from a multidisciplinary field campaign at Rio Tinto in Spain are presented.

  2. Life in Ice: Implications to Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoover, Richard B.

    2009-01-01

    During the 2008 Tawani International Expedition Schirmacher Oasis/Lake Untersee Antarctica Expedition, living and instantly motile bacteria were found in freshly thawed meltwater from ice of the Schirmacher Oasis Lakes, the Anuchin Glacier ice and samples of the that perennial ice sheet above Lake Untersee. This phenomenon of living bacteria encased in ice had previously been observed in the 32,000 year old ice of the Fox Tunnel. The bacteria found in this ice included the strain FTR1T which was isolated and published as valid new species (Carnobacterium pleistocenium) the first validly published living Pleistocene organism still alive today. Living bacteria were also extracted from ancient ice cores from Vostok, Antarctica. The discovery that many strains of bacteria are able to survive and remain alive while frozen in ice sheets for long periods of time may have direct relevance to Astrobiology. The abundance of viable bacteria in the ice sheets of Antarctica suggests that the presence of live bacteria in ice is common, rather than an isolated phenomenon. This paper will discuss the results of recent studies at NSSTC of bacteria cryopreserved in ice. This paper advances the hypothesis that cryopreserved cells, and perhaps even viable bacterial cells, may exist today--frozen in the water-ice of lunar craters, the Polar Caps or craters of Mars; or in the permafrost of Mars; ice and rocks of comets or water bearing asteroids; or in the frozen crusts of the icy moons of Jupiter and Saturn. The existence of bacterial life in ice suggests that it may not be necessary to drill through a thick ice crust to reach liquid water seas deep beneath the icy crusts of Europa, Ganymede and Enceladus. The presence of viable bacteria in the ice of the Earth s Polar Caps suggests that the possibility that cryo-panspermia (i.e., the trans-planetary transfer of microbial life by impact ejection/spallation of bacteria-rich polar ice masses) deserves serious consideration and study as a

  3. Psychrophiles and astrobiology: microbial life of frozen worlds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pikuta, Elena V.; Hoover, Richard B.

    2003-01-01

    Most bodies of our Solar System are "Frozen Worlds" where the prevailing surface temperature remains at or below freezing. On Earth there are vast permanently frozen regions of permafrost, polar ice sheets, and glaciers and the deep oceans and deep-sea marine sediments have remained at 2 - 4°C for eons. Psychrophilic and psychrotrophic microbiota that inhabit these regimes provide analogs for microbial life that might inhabit ice sheets and permafrost of Mars, comets, or the ice/water interfaces or sediments deep beneath the icy crusts of Europa, Callisto, or Ganymede. Cryopreserved micro-organisms can remain viable (in a deep anabiotic state) for millions of years frozen in permafrost and ice. Psychrophilic and psychrotrophic (cold-loving) microbes can carry out metabolic processes in water films and brine, acidic, or alkaline chanels in permafrost or ice at temperatures far below 0°C. These microbes of the cryosphere help define the thermal and temporal limits of life on Earth and may provide clues to where and how to search for evidence of life elsewhere in the Cosmos. Astrobiologists at the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center have collected microbial extremophiles from the Pleistocene ice wedges and frozen thermokarst ponds from the Fox Permafrost Tunnel of Alaska. Microbes have also been isolated from samples of Magellanic Penguin guano from Patagonia; deep-sea marine muds near hydrothermal vents; snow and permafrost from Siberia, and deep ice cores, ice-bubble and cryoconite rocks of the Central Antarctic Ice Sheet. These samples have yielded microbial extremophiles representing a wide variety of anaerobic bacteria and archaea. These microbes have been isolated, cultured, characterized and analyzed by phylogenetic and genomic methods. Images were obtained by Phase Contrast, Environmental, Field Emission Scanning and Transmission Electron Microscopes to study the ultra-microstructure and elemental distribution in the composition of these micro-organisms. We

  4. EVA Swab Tool to Support Planetary Protection and Astrobiology Evaluations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rucker, Michelle A.; Hood, Drew; Walker, Mary; Venkateswaran, Kasthuri J.; Schuerger, Andrew C.

    2018-01-01

    When we send humans to search for life on other planets, we'll need to know what we brought with us versus what may already be there. To ensure our crewed systems meet planetary protection requirements-and to protect our science from human contamination-we'll need to assess whether microorganisms may be leaking or venting from our spacecraft. Microbial sample collection outside of a pressurized spacecraft is complicated by temperature extremes, low pressures that preclude the use of laboratory standard (wetted) swabs, and operation either in bulky spacesuits or with robotic assistance. A team at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) recently developed a swab kit for use in collecting microbial samples from the external surfaces of crewed spacecraft, including spacesuits. The Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Swab Kit consists of a single swab tool handle and an eight-canister sample caddy. The design team minimized development cost by re-purposing a heritage Space Shuttle tile repair handle that was designed to quickly snap into different tool attachments by engaging a mating device in each end effector. This allowed the tool handle to snap onto a fresh swab end effector much like popular shaving razor handles can snap onto a disposable blade cartridge. To disengage the handle from a swab, the user performs two independent functions, which can be done with a single hand. This dual operation mitigates the risk that a swab will be inadvertently released and lost in microgravity. Each swab end effector is fitted with commercially available foam swab tips, vendor-certified to be sterile for Deoxyribonucleic Acid (DNA). A microbial filter installed in the bottom of each sample container allows the container to outgas and re-pressurize without introducing microbial contaminants to internal void spaces. Extensive ground testing, post-test handling, and sample analysis confirmed the design is able to maintain sterile conditions as the canister moves between

  5. Life in the Universe - Astronomy and Planetary Science Research Experience for Undergraduates at the SETI Institute

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiar, J.; Phillips, C. B.; Rudolph, A.; Bonaccorsi, R.; Tarter, J.; Harp, G.; Caldwell, D. A.; DeVore, E. K.

    2016-12-01

    The SETI Institute hosts an Astrobiology Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program. Beginning in 2013, we partnered with the Physics and Astronomy Dept. at Cal Poly Pomona, a Hispanic-serving university, to recruit underserved students. Over 11 years, we have served 155 students. We focus on Astrobiology since the Institute's mission is to explore, understand and explain the origin, nature and prevalence of life in the universe. Our REU students work with mentors at the Institute - a non-profit organization located in California's Silicon Valley-and at the nearby NASA Ames Research Center. Projects span research on survival of microbes under extreme conditions, planetary geology, astronomy, the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI), extrasolar planets and more. The REU program begins with an introductory lectures by Institute scientists covering the diverse astrobiology subfields. A week-long field trip to the SETI Institute's Allen Telescope Array (Hat Creek Radio Astronomy Observatory in Northern California) and field experiences at hydrothermal systems at nearby Lassen Volcanic National Park immerses students in radio astronomy and SETI, and extremophile environments that are research sites for astrobiologists. Field trips expose students to diverse environments and allow them to investigate planetary analogs as our scientists do. Students also participate in local trips to the California Academy of Sciences and other nearby locations of scientific interest, and attend the weekly scientific colloquium hosted by the SETI Institute at Microsoft, other seminars and lectures at SETI Institute and NASA Ames. The students meet and present at a weekly journal club where they hone their presentation skills, as well as share their research progress. At the end of the summer, the REU interns present their research projects at a session of the Institute's colloquium. As a final project, students prepare a 2-page formal abstract and 15-minute

  6. Astrobiology Science and Technology: A Path to Future Discovery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, M. A.; Lavaery, D. B.

    2001-01-01

    The Astrobiology Program is described. However, science-driven robotic exploration of extreme environments is needed for a new era of planetary exploration requiring biologically relevant instrumentation and extensive, autonomous operations on planetary surfaces. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  7. Astrobiology and the Possibility of Life on Earth and Elsewhere…

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cottin, Hervé; Kotler, Julia Michelle; Bartik, Kristin; Cleaves, H. James; Cockell, Charles S.; de Vera, Jean Pierre P; Ehrenfreund, Pascale; Leuko, Stefan; Ten Kate, Inge Loes|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/292012217; Martins, Zita; Pascal, Robert; Quinn, Richard; Rettberg, Petra; Westall, Frances

    Astrobiology is an interdisciplinary scientific field not only focused on the search of extraterrestrial life, but also on deciphering the key environmental parameters that have enabled the emergence of life on Earth. Understanding these physical and chemical parameters is fundamental knowledge

  8. Astrobiology Courses--A Useful Framework for Teaching Interdisciplinary Science.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sauterer, Roger

    2000-01-01

    Explains astrobiology and indicates the possibility of life on other planets and the interest of humankind in this possibility. Defines topics open to public misconception and their primary reinforcements by television shows. Expresses the need for students to learn the connections between different science majors. (YDS)

  9. Astrobiology, history, and society life beyond earth and the impact of discovery

    CERN Document Server

    2013-01-01

    This book addresses important current and historical topics in astrobiology and the search for life beyond Earth, including the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI). The first section covers the plurality of worlds debate from antiquity through the nineteenth century, while section two covers the extraterrestrial life debate from the twentieth century to the present. The final section examines the societal impact of discovering life beyond Earth, including both cultural and religious dimensions. Throughout the book, authors draw links between their own chapters and those of other contributors, emphasizing the interconnections between the various strands of the history and societal impact of the search for extraterrestrial life. The chapters are all written by internationally recognized experts and are carefully edited by Douglas Vakoch, professor of clinical psychology at the California Institute of Integral Studies and Director of Interstellar Message Composition at the SETI Institute. This interd...

  10. The biogeochemical iron cycle and astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schröder, Christian; Köhler, Inga; Muller, Francois L. L.; Chumakov, Aleksandr I.; Kupenko, Ilya; Rüffer, Rudolf; Kappler, Andreas

    2016-12-01

    Biogeochemistry investigates chemical cycles which influence or are influenced by biological activity. Astrobiology studies the origin, evolution and distribution of life in the universe. The biogeochemical Fe cycle has controlled major nutrient cycles such as the C cycle throughout geological time. Iron sulfide minerals may have provided energy and surfaces for the first pioneer organisms on Earth. Banded iron formations document the evolution of oxygenic photosynthesis. To assess the potential habitability of planets other than Earth one looks for water, an energy source and a C source. On Mars, for example, Fe minerals have provided evidence for the past presence of liquid water on its surface and would provide a viable energy source. Here we present Mössbauer spectroscopy investigations of Fe and C cycle interactions in both ancient and modern environments. Experiments to simulate the diagenesis of banded iron formations indicate that the formation of ferrous minerals depends on the amount of biomass buried with ferric precursors rather than on the atmospheric composition at the time of deposition. Mössbauer spectra further reveal the mutual stabilisation of Fe-organic matter complexes against mineral transformation and decay of organic matter into CO2. This corresponds to observations of a `rusty carbon sink' in modern sediments. The stabilisation of Fe-organic matter complexes may also aid transport of particulate Fe in the water column while having an adverse effect on the bioavailability of Fe. In the modern oxic ocean, Fe is insoluble and particulate Fe represents an important source. Collecting that particulate Fe yields small sample sizes that would pose a challenge for conventional Mössbauer experiments. We demonstrate that the unique properties of the beam used in synchrotron-based Mössbauer applications can be utilized for studying such samples effectively. Reactive Fe species often occur in amorphous or nanoparticulate form in the environment and

  11. The biogeochemical iron cycle and astrobiology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schröder, Christian; Köhler, Inga; Muller, Francois L. L.; Chumakov, Aleksandr I.; Kupenko, Ilya; Rüffer, Rudolf; Kappler, Andreas

    2016-01-01

    Biogeochemistry investigates chemical cycles which influence or are influenced by biological activity. Astrobiology studies the origin, evolution and distribution of life in the universe. The biogeochemical Fe cycle has controlled major nutrient cycles such as the C cycle throughout geological time. Iron sulfide minerals may have provided energy and surfaces for the first pioneer organisms on Earth. Banded iron formations document the evolution of oxygenic photosynthesis. To assess the potential habitability of planets other than Earth one looks for water, an energy source and a C source. On Mars, for example, Fe minerals have provided evidence for the past presence of liquid water on its surface and would provide a viable energy source. Here we present Mössbauer spectroscopy investigations of Fe and C cycle interactions in both ancient and modern environments. Experiments to simulate the diagenesis of banded iron formations indicate that the formation of ferrous minerals depends on the amount of biomass buried with ferric precursors rather than on the atmospheric composition at the time of deposition. Mössbauer spectra further reveal the mutual stabilisation of Fe-organic matter complexes against mineral transformation and decay of organic matter into CO 2 . This corresponds to observations of a ‘rusty carbon sink’ in modern sediments. The stabilisation of Fe-organic matter complexes may also aid transport of particulate Fe in the water column while having an adverse effect on the bioavailability of Fe. In the modern oxic ocean, Fe is insoluble and particulate Fe represents an important source. Collecting that particulate Fe yields small sample sizes that would pose a challenge for conventional Mössbauer experiments. We demonstrate that the unique properties of the beam used in synchrotron-based Mössbauer applications can be utilized for studying such samples effectively. Reactive Fe species often occur in amorphous or nanoparticulate form in the

  12. The biogeochemical iron cycle and astrobiology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schröder, Christian, E-mail: christian.schroeder@stir.ac.uk [University of Stirling, Biological and Environmental Sciences, School of Natural Sciences (United Kingdom); Köhler, Inga [Eberhard Karls University of Tübingen, Geomicrobiology, Centre for Applied Geoscience (Germany); Muller, Francois L. L. [Qatar University, Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences (Qatar); Chumakov, Aleksandr I.; Kupenko, Ilya; Rüffer, Rudolf [ESRF-The European Synchrotron (France); Kappler, Andreas [Eberhard Karls University of Tübingen, Geomicrobiology, Centre for Applied Geoscience (Germany)

    2016-12-15

    Biogeochemistry investigates chemical cycles which influence or are influenced by biological activity. Astrobiology studies the origin, evolution and distribution of life in the universe. The biogeochemical Fe cycle has controlled major nutrient cycles such as the C cycle throughout geological time. Iron sulfide minerals may have provided energy and surfaces for the first pioneer organisms on Earth. Banded iron formations document the evolution of oxygenic photosynthesis. To assess the potential habitability of planets other than Earth one looks for water, an energy source and a C source. On Mars, for example, Fe minerals have provided evidence for the past presence of liquid water on its surface and would provide a viable energy source. Here we present Mössbauer spectroscopy investigations of Fe and C cycle interactions in both ancient and modern environments. Experiments to simulate the diagenesis of banded iron formations indicate that the formation of ferrous minerals depends on the amount of biomass buried with ferric precursors rather than on the atmospheric composition at the time of deposition. Mössbauer spectra further reveal the mutual stabilisation of Fe-organic matter complexes against mineral transformation and decay of organic matter into CO{sub 2}. This corresponds to observations of a ‘rusty carbon sink’ in modern sediments. The stabilisation of Fe-organic matter complexes may also aid transport of particulate Fe in the water column while having an adverse effect on the bioavailability of Fe. In the modern oxic ocean, Fe is insoluble and particulate Fe represents an important source. Collecting that particulate Fe yields small sample sizes that would pose a challenge for conventional Mössbauer experiments. We demonstrate that the unique properties of the beam used in synchrotron-based Mössbauer applications can be utilized for studying such samples effectively. Reactive Fe species often occur in amorphous or nanoparticulate form in the

  13. Systems astrobiology for a reliable biomarker on exo-worlds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chela Flores, Julian

    2013-04-01

    Although astrobiology is a science midway between biology and astrophysics, it has surprisingly remained largely disconnected from recent trends in certain branches of both of these disciplines. Aiming at discovering how systems properties emerge has proved valuable in chemistry and in biology and should also yield insights into astrobiology. This is feasible since new large data banks in the case of astrobiology are of a geophysical/astronomical kind, rather than the also large molecular biology data that are used for questions related firstly, to genetics in a systems context and secondly, to biochemistry. The application of systems biology is illustrated for our own planetary system, where 3 Earth-like planets are within the habitable zone of a G2V star and where the process of photosynthesis has led to a single oxygenic atmosphere that was triggered during the Great Oxidation Event some 2,5 billion years before the present. The significance of the biogenic origin of a considerable fraction of our atmosphere has been discussed earlier (Kiang et al., 2007). Bonding of O2 ensures that it is stable enough to accumulate in a world's atmosphere if triggered by a living process. The reduction of F and Cl deliver energy release per e+-transfer, but unlike O2 the weaker bonding properties inhibit large atmospheric accumulation (Catling et al., 2005). The evolution of O2-producing photosynthesis is very likely on exo-worlds (Wolstencroft and Raven, 2002). With our simplifying assumption of evolutionary convergence, we show how to probe for a reliable biomarker in the exo-atmospheres of planets, or their satellites, orbiting stars of different luminosities and ages (Chela-Flores, 2013). We treat the living process as a system of exo-environments capable of radically modifying their geology and atmospheres, both for exo-planets, and especially for exo-moons, the presence of which can be extracted from the Kepler data (Kipping et al., 2012). What we are learning about the

  14. Reevaluation of the NOAA/CMDL carbon monoxide reference scale and comparisons with CO reference gases at NASA-Langley and the Fraunhofer Institut

    Science.gov (United States)

    Novelli, P. C.; Collins, J. E., Jr.; Myers, R. C.; Sachse, G. W.; Scheel, H. E.

    1994-01-01

    The carbon monoxide (CO) reference scale created by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration/Climate Monitoring and Diagnostics Laboratory (NOAA/CMDL) is used to quantify measurements of CO in the atmosphere, calibrate standards of other laboratories and to otherwise provide reference gases to the community measuring atmospheric CO. This reference scale was created based upon a set of primary standards prepared by gravimetric methods at CMDL and has been propagated to a set of working standards. In this paper we compare CO mixing ratios assigned to the working standards by three approaches: (1) calibration against the original gravimetric standards, (2) calibration using only working standards as the reference gas, and (3) calibration against three new gravimetric standards prepared to CMDL. The agreement between these values was typically better than 1%. The calibration histories of CMDL working standards are reviewed with respect to expected rates of CO change in the atmosphere. Using a Monte Carlo approach to simulate the effect of drifting standards on calculated mixing ratios, we conclude that the error solely associated with the maintenance of standards will limit the ability to detect small CO changes in the atmosphere. We also report results of intercalibration experiments conducted between CMDL and the Diode Laser Sensor Group (DACOM) at the NASA Langley Research Center (Hampton, Virginia), and CMDL and the Fraunhofer-Institut (Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany). Each laboratory calibrated several working standards for CO using their reference gases, and these results were compared to calibrations conducted by CMDL. The intercomparison of eight standards (CO concentrations between approximately 100 and approximately 165 ppb) by CMDL and NASA agreed to better than +/- 2%. The calibration of six standards (CO concentrations between approximately 50 and approximately 210 ppb) by CMDL and the Fraunhofer-Institut agreed to within +/- 2% for four

  15. NASA Astrophysics E/PO: The Impact of the Space Telescope Science Institute Office of Public Outreach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Denise A.; Jirdeh, Hussein; Eisenhamer, Bonnie; Villard, Ray

    2015-01-01

    As the science operations center for Hubble and Webb, the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) is uniquely positioned to captivate the imagination and inspire learners of all ages in humanity's quest to understand fundamental questions about our universe and our place in it. With the 25th anniversary of Hubble's launch and deployment approaching in April 2015, this presentation will provide an overview of the impact of the STScI's Office of Public Outreach's programs to engage students, educators, and the public in exploring the universe through audience-based news, education, and outreach programs. At the heart of our programs lies a tight coupling of scientific, education, and communications expertise. By partnering scientists and educators, we assure current, accurate science content and education products and programs that are classroom-ready and held to the highest pedagogical standards. Likewise, news and outreach programs accurately convey cutting-edge science and technology in a way that is attuned to audience needs. The combination of Hubble's scientific capabilities and majestic imagery, together with a deep commitment to creating effective programs to share Hubble science with the education community and the public, has enabled the STScI Office of Public Outreach programs to engage 6 million students and ½ million educators per year, and 24 million online viewers per year. Hubble press releases generate approximately 5,000 online news articles per year with an average circulation of 125 million potential readers per press release news story. We will also share how best practices and lessons learned from this long-lived program are already being applied to engage a new generation of explorers in the science and technology of the James Webb Space Telescope.

  16. NASA Astrophysics Education and Public Outreach: The Impact of the Space Telescope Science Institute Office of Public Outreach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Denise Anne; Jirdeh, Hussein; Eisenhamer, Bonnie; Villard, Ray; Green, Joel David

    2015-08-01

    As the science operations center for the Hubble Space Telescope and the James Webb Space Telescope, the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) is uniquely positioned to captivate the imagination and inspire learners of all ages in humanity’s quest to understand fundamental questions about our universe and our place in it. This presentation will provide an overview of the impact of the STScI’s Office of Public Outreach’s efforts to engage students, educators, and the public in exploring the universe through audience-based news, education, and outreach programs.At the heart of our programs lies a tight coupling of scientific, education, and communications expertise. By partnering scientists and educators, we assure current, accurate science content and education products and programs that are classroom-ready and held to the highest pedagogical standards. Likewise, news and outreach programs accurately convey cutting-edge science and technology in a way that is attuned to audience needs. The combination of Hubble’s scientific capabilities, majestic imagery, and our deep commitment to create effective programs to share Hubble science with the education community and the public, has enabled the STScI Office of Public Outreach programs to engage 6 million students and ½ million educators per year, and 24 million online viewers per year. Hubble press releases generate approximately 5,000 online news articles per year with an average circulation of 125 million potential readers per press release news story. We will also share how best practices and lessons learned from this long-lived program are already being applied to engage a new generation of explorers in the science and technology of the James Webb Space Telescope.

  17. Astrobiology and the Possibility of Life on Earth and Elsewhere…

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cottin, Hervé; Kotler, Julia Michelle; Bartik, Kristin; Cleaves, H. James; Cockell, Charles S.; de Vera, Jean-Pierre P.; Ehrenfreund, Pascale; Leuko, Stefan; Ten Kate, Inge Loes; Martins, Zita; Pascal, Robert; Quinn, Richard; Rettberg, Petra; Westall, Frances

    2017-07-01

    Astrobiology is an interdisciplinary scientific field not only focused on the search of extraterrestrial life, but also on deciphering the key environmental parameters that have enabled the emergence of life on Earth. Understanding these physical and chemical parameters is fundamental knowledge necessary not only for discovering life or signs of life on other planets, but also for understanding our own terrestrial environment. Therefore, astrobiology pushes us to combine different perspectives such as the conditions on the primitive Earth, the physicochemical limits of life, exploration of habitable environments in the Solar System, and the search for signatures of life in exoplanets. Chemists, biologists, geologists, planetologists and astrophysicists are contributing extensively to this interdisciplinary research field. From 2011 to 2014, the European Space Agency (ESA) had the initiative to gather a Topical Team of interdisciplinary scientists focused on astrobiology to review the profound transformations in the field that have occurred since the beginning of the new century. The present paper is an interdisciplinary review of current research in astrobiology, covering the major advances and main outlooks in the field. The following subjects will be reviewed and most recent discoveries will be highlighted: the new understanding of planetary system formation including the specificity of the Earth among the diversity of planets, the origin of water on Earth and its unique combined properties among solvents for the emergence of life, the idea that the Earth could have been habitable during the Hadean Era, the inventory of endogenous and exogenous sources of organic matter and new concepts about how chemistry could evolve towards biological molecules and biological systems. In addition, many new findings show the remarkable potential life has for adaptation and survival in extreme environments. All those results from different fields of science are guiding our

  18. Critical issues in the history, philosophy, and sociology of astrobiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dick, Steven J

    2012-10-01

    Fifty years after serious scientific research began in the field of exobiology, and forty years after serious historical research began on the subject of extraterrestrial life, this paper identifies and examines some of the most important issues in the history, philosophy, and sociology of what is today known as astrobiology. As in the philosophy of science in general, and in the philosophies of particular sciences, critical issues in the philosophy and sociology of astrobiology are both stimulated and illuminated by history. Among those issues are (1) epistemological issues such as the status of astrobiology as a science, the problematic nature of evidence and inference, and the limits of science; (2) metaphysical/scientific issues, including the question of defining the fundamental concepts of life, mind, intelligence, and culture in a universal context; the role of contingency and necessity in the origin of these fundamental phenomena; and whether or not the universe is in some sense fine-tuned for life and perhaps biocentric; (3) societal issues such as the theological, ethical, and worldview impacts of the discovery of microbial or intelligent life; and the question of whether the search for extraterrestrial life should be pursued at all, and with what precautions; and (4) issues related to the sociology of scientific knowledge, including the diverse attitudes and assumptions of different scientific communities and different cultures to the problem of life beyond Earth, the public "will to believe," and the formation of the discipline of astrobiology. All these overlapping issues are framed by the concept of cosmic evolution-the 13.7 billion year Master Narrative of the Universe-which may result in a physical, biological, or postbiological universe and determine the long-term destiny of humanity.

  19. Astrobiology: Water and Life in the Solar System and beyond

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jorge Alberto Quillfeldt

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available After some methodological considerations and a brief historical background (SETI, we describe the three main impulses to the present discipline of exo / astrobiology - extremophyles, the discovery of exoplanets, and the data gathered by several unmanned probes in the solar system. An overview of recent findings concerning the presence of frozen or liquid water in our planetary system is presented, and the main trends for the following years, summarized.

  20. Proposed biomimetic molecular sensor array for astrobiology applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cullen, D. C.; Grant, W. D.; Piletsky, S.; Sims, M. R.

    2001-08-01

    A key objective of future astrobiology lander missions, e.g. to Mars and Europa, is the detection of biomarkers - molecules whose presence indicates the existence of either current or extinct life. To address limitations of current analytical methods for biomarker detection, we describe the methodology of a new project for demonstration of a robust molecular-recognition sensor array for astrobiology biomarkers. The sensor array will be realised by assembling components that have been demonstrated individually in previous or current research projects. The major components are (1) robust artificial molecular receptors comprised of molecular imprinted polymer (MIP) recognition systems and (2) a sensor array comprised of both optical and electrochemical sensor elements. These components will be integrated together using ink-jet printing technology coupled with in situ photo-polymerisation of MIPs. For demonstration, four model biomarkers are chosen as targets and represent various classes of potential biomarkers. Objectives of the proposed work include (1) demonstration of practical proof-of-concept, (2) identify areas for further development and (3) provide performance and design data for follow-up projects leading to astrobiology missions.

  1. Secondary School Students' Knowledge and Opinions on Astrobiology Topics and Related Social Issues

    OpenAIRE

    Oreiro Rey, Raquel; Solbes Matarredona, Jordi

    2017-01-01

    Astrobiology is the study of the origin of life on Earth and the distribution of life in the Universe. Its multidisciplinary approach, social and philosophical implications, and appeal within the discipline and beyond make astrobiology a uniquely qualified subject for general science education. In this study, student knowledge and opinions on astrobiology topics were investigated. Eighty-nine students in their last year of compulsory education (age 15) completed a written questionnaire that c...

  2. Life, the universe, and everything: an education outreach proposal to build a traveling astrobiology exhibit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barge, Laura M; Pulschen, André A; Emygdio, Ana Paula Mendes; Congreve, Curtis; Kishimoto, Darío E; Bendia, Amanda G; de Morais M Teles, Antonio; DeMarines, Julia; Stoupin, Daniel

    2013-03-01

    Astrobiology is a transdisciplinary field with extraordinary potential for the scientific community. As such, it is important to educate the community at large about the growing importance of this field to increase awareness and scientific content learning and expose potential future scientists. To this end, we propose the creation of a traveling museum exhibit that focuses exclusively on astrobiology and utilizes modern museum exhibit technology and design. This exhibit (the "Astrobiology Road Show"), organized and evaluated by an international group of astrobiology students and postdocs, is planned to tour throughout the Americas.

  3. Reevaluation of the NOAA/CMDL carbon monoxide reference scale and comparisons with CO reference gases at NASA-Langley and the Fraunhofer Institut

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Novelli, P.C.; Collins, J.E. Jr.; Myers, R.C.; Sachse, G.W.; Scheel, H.E. [Univ. of Colordo, Boulder, CO (United States)]|[Science and Technology Corporation, Hampton, VA (United States)]|[NOAA, Boulder, CO (United States)]|[NASA, Langley Research Center, Hampton, VA (United States)]|[Fraunhofer-Inst. fuer Atmospharishce Umweltforschung (Germany)

    1994-06-01

    The carbon monoxide (CO) reference scale created by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration/Climate Monitoring and Diagnostics Laboratory (NOAA/CMDL) is used to quantify measurements of CO in the atmosphere, calibrate standards of other laboratories and to otherwise provide reference gases to the community measuring atmospheric CO. This reference scale was created based upon a set of primary standards prepared by gravimetric methods at CMDL and has been propagated to a set of working standards. In this paper we compare CO mixing ratios assigned to the working standards by three approaches: (1) calibration against the original gravimetric standards, (2) calibration using only working standards as the reference gas, and (3) calibration against three new gravimetric standards prepared to CMDL. The agreement between these values was typically better than 1%. The calibration histories of CMDL working standards are reviewed with respect to expected rates of CO change in the atmosphere. Using a Monte Carlo approach to simulate the effect of drifting standards on calculated mixing ratios, we conclude that the error solely associated with the maintenance of standards will limit the ability to detect small CO changes in the atmosphere. We also report results of intercalibration experiments conducted between CMDL and the Diode Laser Sensor Group (DACOM) at the NASA Langley Research Center (Hampton, Virginia), and CMDL and the Fraunhofer-Institut (Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany). Each laboratory calibrated several working standards for CO using their reference gases, and these results were compared to calibrations conducted by CMDL. The intercomparison of eight standards (CO concentrations between approximately 100 and approximately 165 ppb) by CMDL and NASA agreed to better than +/- 2%. (Abstract Truncated)

  4. A Bioinformatics Facility for NASA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schweighofer, Karl; Pohorille, Andrew

    2006-01-01

    Building on an existing prototype, we have fielded a facility with bioinformatics technologies that will help NASA meet its unique requirements for biological research. This facility consists of a cluster of computers capable of performing computationally intensive tasks, software tools, databases and knowledge management systems. Novel computational technologies for analyzing and integrating new biological data and already existing knowledge have been developed. With continued development and support, the facility will fulfill strategic NASA s bioinformatics needs in astrobiology and space exploration. . As a demonstration of these capabilities, we will present a detailed analysis of how spaceflight factors impact gene expression in the liver and kidney for mice flown aboard shuttle flight STS-108. We have found that many genes involved in signal transduction, cell cycle, and development respond to changes in microgravity, but that most metabolic pathways appear unchanged.

  5. Moessbauer spectroscopy as a tool in astrobiology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schroeder, Christian, E-mail: schroedc@uni-mainz.de; Klingelhoefer, Goestar, E-mail: klingel@mail.uni-mainz.de [Johannes Gutenberg-Universitaet, Institut fuer Anorganische Chemie und Analytische Chemie (Germany); Bailey, Brad E., E-mail: bebailey@ucsd.edu; Staudigel, Hubert, E-mail: hstaudigel@ucsd.edu [University of California San Diego, Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics, Scripps Institution of Oceanography (United States)

    2005-11-15

    Two miniaturized Moessbauer spectrometers are part of the Athena instrument package of the NASA Mars Exploration Rovers, Spirit and Opportunity. The primary objectives of their science investigation are to explore two sites on the surface of Mars where water may once have been present, and to assess past environmental conditions at those sites and their suitability for life. Aqueous minerals - jarosite at Meridiani Planum, Opportunity's landing site, and goethite in the Columbia Hills in Gusev Crater, Spirit's landing site - were identified by Moessbauer spectroscopy, thus providing in situ proof of water being present at those sites in the past. The formation of jarosite in particular puts strong constraints on environmental conditions during the time of formation and hence on the evaluation of potential habitability. On Earth Moessbauer spectroscopy was used to investigate microbially induced changes in Fe oxidation states and mineralogy at the Loihi deep sea mount, a hydrothermal vent system, which might serve as an analogue for potential habitats in the Martian subsurface and the sub-ice ocean of Jupiter's icy moon Europa.

  6. Moessbauer spectroscopy as a tool in astrobiology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schroeder, Christian; Klingelhoefer, Goestar; Bailey, Brad E.; Staudigel, Hubert

    2005-01-01

    Two miniaturized Moessbauer spectrometers are part of the Athena instrument package of the NASA Mars Exploration Rovers, Spirit and Opportunity. The primary objectives of their science investigation are to explore two sites on the surface of Mars where water may once have been present, and to assess past environmental conditions at those sites and their suitability for life. Aqueous minerals - jarosite at Meridiani Planum, Opportunity's landing site, and goethite in the Columbia Hills in Gusev Crater, Spirit's landing site - were identified by Moessbauer spectroscopy, thus providing in situ proof of water being present at those sites in the past. The formation of jarosite in particular puts strong constraints on environmental conditions during the time of formation and hence on the evaluation of potential habitability. On Earth Moessbauer spectroscopy was used to investigate microbially induced changes in Fe oxidation states and mineralogy at the Loihi deep sea mount, a hydrothermal vent system, which might serve as an analogue for potential habitats in the Martian subsurface and the sub-ice ocean of Jupiter's icy moon Europa.

  7. Emphasizing Astrobiology: Highlighting Communication in an Elective Course for Science Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Offerdahl, Erika G.; Prather, Edward E.; Slater, Timothy F.

    2004-01-01

    The project described here involved the design, implementation, and evaluation of an upper level, undergraduate elective course for science majors. Specific course goals were to help students gain an appreciation of the interdisciplinary nature of astrobiology, understand key ideas in astrobiology, and develop the skills necessary to communicate…

  8. Brazilian research on extremophiles in the context of astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duarte, Rubens T. D.; Nóbrega, Felipe; Nakayama, Cristina R.; Pellizari, Vivian H.

    2012-10-01

    Extremophiles are organisms adapted to grow at extreme ranges of environmental variables, such as high or low temperatures, acid or alkaline medium, high salt concentration, high pressures and so forth. Most extremophiles are micro-organisms that belong to the Archaea and Bacteria domains, and are widely spread across the world, which include the polar regions, volcanoes, deserts, deep oceanic sediments, hydrothermal vents, hypersaline lakes, acid and alkaline water bodies, and other extreme environments considered hostile to human life. Despite the tropical climate, Brazil has a wide range of ecosystems which include some permanent or seasonally extreme environments. For example, the Cerrado is a biome with very low soil pH with high Al+3 concentration, the mangroves in the Brazilian coast are anaerobic and saline, Pantanal has thousands of alkaline-saline lakes, the Caatinga arid and hot soils and the deep sea sediments in the Brazilian ocean shelf. These environments harbour extremophilic organisms that, coupled with the high natural biodiversity in Brazil, could be explored for different purposes. However, only a few projects in Brazil intended to study the extremophiles. In the frame of astrobiology, for example, these organisms could provide important models for defining the limits of life and hypothesize about life outside Earth. Brazilian microbiologists have, however, studied the extremophilic micro-organisms inhabiting non-Brazilian environments, such as the Antarctic continent. The experience and previous results obtained from the Brazilian Antarctic Program (PROANTAR) provide important results that are directly related to astrobiology. This article is a brief synopsis of the Brazilian experience in researching extremophiles, indicating the most important results related to astrobiology and some future perspectives in this area.

  9. Astrobiology at Arizona State University: An Overview of Accomplishments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farmer, Jack

    2005-01-01

    During our five years as an NAI charter member, Arizona State University sponsored a broadly-based program of research and training in Astrobiology to address the origin, evolution and distribution of life in the Solar System. With such a large, diverse and active team, it is not possible in a reasonable space, to cover all details of progress made over the entire five years. The following paragraphs provide an overview update of the specific research areas pursued by the Arizona State University (ASU) Astrobiology team at the end of Year 5 and at the end of the 4 month and subsequent no cost month extensions. for a more detailed review, the reader is referred to the individual annual reports (and Executive Summaries) submitted to the NAI at the end of each of our five years of membership. Appended in electronic form is our complete publication record for all five years, plus a tabulation of undergraduates, graduate students and post-docs supported by our program during this time. The overarching theme of ASU s Astrobiology program was "Exploring the Living Universe: Studies of the Origin, Evolution and Distribution of Life in the Solar System". The NAi-funded research effort was organized under three basic sub- themes: 1. Origins of the Basic Building Blocks of Life. 2. Early Biosphere Evolution. and 3. Exploring for Life in the Solar System. These sub-theme areas were in turn, subdivided into Co-lead research modules. In the paragraphs that follow, accomplishments for individual research modules are briefly outlined, and the key participants presented in tabular form. As noted, publications for each module are appended in hard copy and digital formats, under the name(s) of lead co-Is.

  10. Astrobiology: guidelines and future missions plan for the international community

    Science.gov (United States)

    French, L.; Miller, D.

    The search for extra-terrestrial life has been going on ever since humans realized there was more to the Universe than just the Earth. These quests have taken many forms including, but not limited to: the quest for understanding the biological origins of life on Earth; the deployment of robotic probes to other planets to look for microbial life; the analysis of meteorites for chemical and fossil remnants of extra - terrestrial life; and the search of the radio spectrum for signs of extra-solar intelligence. These searches so far have yielded hints, but no unambiguous proof of life with origins from off Earth. The emerging field of astrobiology studies the origin, distribution, and future of life in the Universe. Technical advances and new, though not conclusive, evidence of extinct microbial life on Mars have created a new enthusiasm for astrobiology in many nations. However, the next steps to take are not clear, and should a positive result be returned, the follow-on missions are yet to be defined. This paper reports on the results of an eight-week study by the students of the International Space University during the summer of 2002. The study created a source book that can be used by mission designers and policy makers to chart the next steps in astrobiology. In particular, the study addresses the following questions:1.What is the full set of dimensions along which we can search forextra-terrestrial life?2.What activities are currently underway by the internationalcommunity along each of these dimensions?3.What are the most effective next steps that can be taken by theinternational space community in order to further this search (from a policy,sociological and mission point of view)?4.What are the proper steps for eliminating possible contaminationof the Earth's biosphere?5.What are the issues with planetary quarantine with regards tounwanted contamination of other biospheres with terrestrial organisms? Integrating all the considerations affecting the search for

  11. A possible first use of the word astrobiology?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Briot, Danielle

    2012-12-01

    The word astrobiology was possibly first used in 1935, in an article published in a French popular science magazine. The author was Ary J. Sternfeld (1905-1980), a pioneer of astronautics who wrote numerous scientific books and papers. The article is remarkable because his portrayal of the concept is very similar to the way it is used today. Here I review the 1935 article and provide a brief history of Sternfeld's life, which was heavily influenced by the tragic events of 20(th) century history.

  12. From Fossils to Astrobiology Records of Life on Earth and Search for Extraterrestrial Biosignatures

    CERN Document Server

    Seckbach, Joseph

    2008-01-01

    From Fossils to Astrobiology reviews developments in paleontology and geobiology that relate to the rapidly-developing field of Astrobiology, the study of life in the Universe. Many traditional areas of scientific study, including astronomy, chemistry and planetary science, contribute to Astrobiology, but the study of the record of life on planet Earth is critical in guiding investigations in the rest of the cosmos. In this varied book, expert scientists from 15 countries present peer-reviewed, stimulating reviews of paleontological and astrobiological studies. The overviews of established and emerging techniques for studying modern and ancient microorganisms on Earth and beyond, will be valuable guides to evaluating biosignatures which could be found in the extraterrestrial surface or subsurface within the Solar System and beyond. This volume also provides discussion on the controversial reports of "nanobacteria" in the Martian meteorite ALH84001. It is a unique volume among Astrobiology monographs in focusi...

  13. Space Biology Meets Astrobiology: Critical Synergies and Concerns

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boston, Penelope J.; Kirven-Brooks, Melissa

    2016-01-01

    The broad fields of space biology and astrobiology share much in common in terms of science questions, approaches, and goals. However, historical circumstances and funding agency practices have frequently resulted in a wide separation between the two related areas. Is this a good thing? We believe that it is not, and that much is to be gained in each field from sharing ideas, resources, and perhaps projects between investigators traditionally working in one discipline or the other. Some of the strengths that the Space Biology community offers include sophistication and experience in flying experiments on space missions. In turn, Astrobiology has focused heavily on ground-based and field research. Challenging physical and chemical conditions experienced in space and on other planets partially overlap, and much can be gleaned from the body of work of each community along these topical lines. A combination of these areas of expertise and experience could result in major advances to all involved. When possible, avoiding having to reinvent methods or approaches already used by a sister community can result in greater efficiencies of resource use. We will discuss some case studies where we believe there are significant overlaps including adaptation to a variety of environmental stresses, extremophiles as potential flight organisms, microfluidics as applied to planetary environment simulations, and others.

  14. Aliens are us. An innovative course in astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliveira, Carlos F.; Barufaldi, James P.

    2009-01-01

    We live in a scientific world; paradoxically, the scientific literacy of the population is minimal at best. Science is an ongoing process, a human endeavour; paradoxically, students tend to believe that science is a finished enterprise. Many non-science major students are not motivated in science classes; paradoxically, there is a public fascination with the possibility of life in the Universe, which is nowadays a scientific endeavour. An astrobiology course was developed at the Center for Science and Mathematics Education at The University of Texas at Austin to address these paradoxes and includes the following objectives: (a) to improve scientific literacy; (b) to demonstrate that science is a work in progress; (c) to enhance the inherent interdisciplinary aspect of science; (d) to demonstrate that science is embedded in society and relates with several social sciences; (e) to improve the content knowledge about the nature of science; (f) to illustrate how engaging learning science can be; and (g) to draw from the intrinsic motivation already incorporated in the general population. The course has been offered, taught and revised for the past three years. The informal course student feedback has been very positive and encouraging. The purpose of this paper is to provide a general overview of the course. In addition, the course's background, content, themes and mode of delivery are outlined, discussed and analysed in this paper. This paper subscribes to an educational philosophy that focuses on the multidisciplinary nature of science and includes critical thinking-based teaching strategies using the dynamic discipline of astrobiology.

  15. A web based semi automatic frame work for astrobiological researches

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P.V. Arun

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Astrobiology addresses the possibility of extraterrestrial life and explores measures towards its recognition. Researches in this context are founded upon the premise that indicators of life encountered in space will be recognizable. However, effective recognition can be accomplished through a universal adaptation of life signatures without restricting solely to those attributes that represent local solutions to the challenges of survival. The life indicators should be modelled with reference to temporal and environmental variations specific to each planet and time. In this paper, we investigate a semi-automatic open source frame work for the accurate detection and interpretation of life signatures by facilitating public participation, in a similar way as adopted by SETI@home project. The involvement of public in identifying patterns can bring a thrust to the mission and is implemented using semi-automatic framework. Different advanced intelligent methodologies may augment the integration of this human machine analysis. Automatic and manual evaluations along with dynamic learning strategy have been adopted to provide accurate results. The system also helps to provide a deep public understanding about space agency’s works and facilitate a mass involvement in the astrobiological studies. It will surely help to motivate young eager minds to pursue a career in this field.

  16. A Novel Penetration System for in situ Astrobiological Studies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yang Gao

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available Due to ultraviolet flux in the surface layers of most solar bodies, future astrobiological research is increasingly seeking to conduct subsurface penetration and drilling to detect chemical signature for extant or extinct life. To address this issue, we present a micro-penetrator concept (mass < 10 kg that is suited for extraterrestrial planetary deployment and in situ investigation of chemical and physical properties. The instrumentation in this concept is a bio-inspired drill to access material beneath sterile surface layer for biomarker detection. The proposed drill represents a novel concept of two-valve-reciprocating motion, inspired by the working mechanism of wood wasp ovipositors. It is lightweight (0.5 kg, driven at low power (3 W, and able to drill deep (1-2 m. Tests have shown that the reciprocating drill is feasible and has potential of improving drill efficiency without using any external force. The overall penetration system provides a small, light and energy efficient solution to in situ astrobiological studies, which is crucial for space engineering. Such a micro-penetrator can be used for exploration of terrestrial-type planets or other small bodies of the solar system with the minimum of modifications.

  17. A Novel Penetration System for in situ Astrobiological Studies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yang Gao

    2008-11-01

    Full Text Available Due to ultraviolet flux in the surface layers of most solar bodies, future astrobiological research is increasingly seeking to conduct subsurface penetration and drilling to detect chemical signature for extant or extinct life. To address this issue, we present a micro-penetrator concept (mass < 10 kg that is suited for extraterrestrial planetary deployment and in situ investigation of chemical and physical properties. The instrumentation in this concept is a bio-inspired drill to access material beneath sterile surface layer for biomarker detection. The proposed drill represents a novel concept of two-valve-reciprocating motion, inspired by the working mechanism of wood wasp ovipositors. It is lightweight (0.5 kg, driven at low power (3 W, and able to drill deep (1-2 m. Tests have shown that the reciprocating drill is feasible and has potential of improving drill efficiency without using any external force. The overall penetration system provides a small, light and energy efficient solution to in situ astrobiological studies, which is crucial for space engineering. Such a micro-penetrator can be used for exploration of terrestrial-type planets or other small bodies of the solar system with the minimum of modifications.

  18. Astrobiology : is humankind ready for the next revolution ?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnould, Jacques

    2012-07-01

    The discovery of a first exoplanet, in 1995, did not revolutionize but knocked astronomical sciences over. At the same time, by opening new prospects of research, in particular in the search of planets similar to the Earth and in a possible extraterrestrial life, this discovery, since then abundantly repeated, gave a new breath to the public interest for this scientific field. But is humanity ready to learn the existence from extraterrestrial forms of life or to remain, in spite of its efforts, in ignorance? The question of the plurality of the worlds is one of the oldest interrogations conveyed by the human cultures, as testified by the multiple answers which were brought to it. In the same way, the concept of life is itself an inexhaustible source of philosophical and religious reflexions, with many consequences in moral domains. It is today necessary to accompany the scientific development in the field of astrobiology by attaching the greatest importance to this intellectual patrimony. It constitutes even one of the first stages of an ethical responsibility in astrobiology, as important as that concerning planetary protection.

  19. Woodpeckers and Diamonds: Some Aspects of Evolutionary Convergence in Astrobiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ćirković, Milan M

    2018-05-01

    Jared Diamond's argument against extraterrestrial intelligence from evolutionary contingency is subjected to critical scrutiny. As with the earlier arguments of George Gaylord Simpson, it contains critical loopholes that lead to its unraveling. From the point of view of the contemporary debates about biological evolution, perhaps the most contentious aspect of such arguments is their atemporal and gradualist usage of the space of all possible biological forms (morphospace). Such usage enables the translation of the adaptive value of a trait into the probability of its evolving. This procedure, it is argued, is dangerously misleading. Contra Diamond, there are reasons to believe that convergence not only plays an important role in the history of life, but also profoundly improves the prospects for search for extraterrestrial intelligence success. Some further considerations about the role of observation selection effects and our scaling of complexity in the great debate about contingency and convergence are given. Taken together, these considerations militate against the pessimism of Diamond's conclusion, and suggest that the search for traces and manifestations of extraterrestrial intelligences is far from forlorn. Key Words: Astrobiology-Evolution-Contingency-Convergence-Complex life-SETI-Major evolutionary transitions-Selection effects-Jared Diamond. Astrobiology 18, 491-502.

  20. NASA Thesaurus

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The NASA Thesaurus contains the authorized NASA subject terms used to index and retrieve materials in the NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS) and the NTRS...

  1. Secondary School Students' Knowledge and Opinions on Astrobiology Topics and Related Social Issues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oreiro, Raquel; Solbes, Jordi

    2017-01-01

    Astrobiology is the study of the origin of life on Earth and the distribution of life in the Universe. Its multidisciplinary approach, social and philosophical implications, and appeal within the discipline and beyond make astrobiology a uniquely qualified subject for general science education. In this study, student knowledge and opinions on astrobiology topics were investigated. Eighty-nine students in their last year of compulsory education (age 15) completed a written questionnaire that consisted of 10 open questions on the topic of astrobiology. The results indicate that students have significant difficulties understanding the origin of life on Earth, despite exposure to the topic by way of the assigned textbooks. The students were often unaware of past or present achievements in the search for life within the Solar System and beyond, topics that are far less commonly seen in textbooks. Student questionnaire answers also indicated that students had problems in reasoning and critical thinking when asked for their opinions on issues such as the potential for life beyond Earth, the question of whether UFOs exist, or what our place is in the Universe. Astrobiology might help initiate student awareness as to current thinking on these matters and should be considered for general science education. Key Words: Astrobiology-Students' views-Science education. Astrobiology 17, 91-99.

  2. Finding Near-Earth Asteroid (NEA) Destinations for Human Exploration: Implications for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landis, Rob; Abell, Paul; Barbee, Brent; Johnson, Lindley

    2012-01-01

    The current number of known potential NEA targets for HSF is limited to those objects whose orbital characteristics are similar to that of the Earth. This is due to the projected capabilities of the exploration systems currently under consideration and development at NASA. However, NEAs with such orbital characteristics often have viewing geometries that place them at low solar elongations and thus are difficult to detect from the vicinity of Earth. While ongoing ground-based surveys and data archives maintained by the NEO Program Observation Program Office and the Minor Planet Center (MPC) have provided a solid basis upon which to build, a more complete catalog of the NEO population is required to inform a robust and sustainable HSF exploration program. Since all the present NEO observing assets are currently confined to the vicinity of the Earth, additional effort must be made to provide capabilities for detection of additional HSF targets via assets beyond Earth orbit. A space-based NEO survey telescope located beyond the vicinity of the Earth, has considerable implications for planetary science and astrobiology. Such a telescope will provide foundational knowledge of our Solar System small body population and detect targets of interest for both the HSF and scientific communities. Data from this asset will yield basic characterization data on the NEOs observed (i.e., albedo, size determination, potential for volatiles and organics, etc.) and help down select targets for future HSF missions. Ideally, the most attractive targets from both HSF and astrobiology perspectives are those NEAs that may contain organic and volatile materials, and which could be effectively sampled at a variety of locations and depths. Presented here is an overview of four space-based survey concepts; any one of which after just a few years of operation will discover many highly accessible NEO targets suitable for robotic and human exploration. Such a space-based survey mission will reveal

  3. Vanguard: A New Science Mission For Experimental Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellery, A.; Wynn-Williams, D.; Edwards, H.; Dickensheets, D.; Welch, C.; Curley, A.

    As an alternative to technically and financially problemat ic sample return missions, a rover-mounted laser Raman spectrometer sensitive to biomolecules and their mineral substrata is a promising alternative in the search for evidence of former life on Mars. We presented a new remote in situ analysis package being designed for experimental astrobiology on terrestrial-type planetary surfaces. The science is based on the hypothesis that if life arose on Mars, the selective pressure of solar radiation would have led to the evolution of pigmented systems to harness the energy of sunlight and to protect cells from concurrent UV stress. Microbial communities would have therefore become stratified by the light gradient, and our remote system would penetrate the near-subsurface profile in a vertical transect of horizontal strata in ancient sediments (such as palaeolake beds). The system will include an extensive array of robotic support to translocate and deploy a Raman spectrometer detectors beneath the surface of Mars ­ it will comprise of a base station lander to support communications, a robotic micro-rover to permit well- separated triplicate profiles made by three ground-penetrating moles mounted in a vertical configuration. Each mole will deploy a tether carrying fibre optic cables coupling the Raman spectrometer onboard the rover and the side-scanning sensor head on the mole. The complete system has been named Vanguard, and it represents a close collaboration between a space robotics engineer (Ellery), an astrobiologist (Wynn-Williams), a molecular spectroscopist (Edwards), an opto-electronic technologist (Dickensheets), a spacecraft engineer (Welch) and a robotic vision specialist (Curley). The autonomy requirement for the Vanguard instrument requires that significant scientific competence is imparted to the instrument through an expert system to ensure that quick-look analysis is performed onboard in real-time as the mole penetrates beneath the surface. Onboard

  4. Hacia una filosofía de la astrobiología

    OpenAIRE

    Roberto Aretxaga-Burgos

    2016-01-01

    Tomando como fundamento la historia y literatura astrobiológicas, exploramos la posibilidad y necesidad de una Filosofía de la Astrobiología, proponemos una definición de Filosofía de la Astrobiología y su consideración como subdisciplina de la Filosofía de la Ciencia, distinta de la Filosofía de la Biología. Incluimos una bibliografía para una Filosofía de la Astrobiología.

  5. Ethical issues in astrobiology: a Christian perspective (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Randolph, R. O.

    2009-12-01

    With its focus on the origin, extent, and future of life, Astrobiology raises exciting, multidisciplinary questions for science. At the same time, Astrobiology raises important questions for the humanities. For instance, the prospect of discovering extraterrestrial life - either intelligent or unintelligent - raises questions about humans’ place in the universe and our relationship with nature on planet Earth. Fundamentally, such questions are rooted in our understanding of what it means to be human. From a Christian perspective, the foundational claim about human nature is that all persons bear the "imago dei", the image of God. This concept forms the basis for how humans relate to one another (dignity) and how humans relate to nature (stewardship). For many Christians the "imago dei" also suggests that humans are at the center of the universe. The discovery of extraterrestrial life would be another scientific development - similar to evolution - that essentially de-centers humanity. For some Christian perspectives this de-centering may be problematic, but I will argue that the discovery of extraterrestrial life would actually offer a much needed theological corrective for contemporary Christians’ understanding of the "imago dei". I will make this argument by examining two clusters of ethical issues confronting Astrobiology: 1. What ethical obligations would human explorers owe to extraterrestrial life? Are there ethical obligations to protect extraterrestrial ecosystems from harm or exploitation by human explorers? Do our ethical considerations change, if the extraterrestrial life is a “second genesis;” in other words a form of life completely different and independent from the carbon-based life that we know on Earth? 2. Do we have an ethical obligation to promote life as much as we can? If human explorers discover extraterrestrial life and through examination determine that it is struggling to survive, do we have an ethical obligation to assist that

  6. planetaria como de la astrobiología

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miguel Alcíbar-Cuello

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available En este artículo se exponen algunos de los recursos didácticos que han sido concebidos para facilitar el aprendizaje de distintos aspectos de la Exploración Planetaria y, en concreto, de la Astrobiología como área transdisciplinar de conocimientos. El interés más evidente que presentan estos materiales didácticos, además de tener una vocación interactiva, es que combinan contenidos científicotecnológicos con cuestiones de índole metodológica, lo que proporciona al estudiante una visión más reflexiva del modus operandi de la investigación científica.

  7. Astrobiological Effects of Stellar Radiation in Circumstellar Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cuntz, Manfred; Gurdemir, Levent; Guinan, Edward F.; Kurucz, Robert L.

    2006-10-01

    The centerpiece of all life on Earth is carbon-based biochemistry. Previous scientific research has suggested that biochemistry based on carbon may also play a decisive role in extraterrestrial life forms, i.e., alien life outside of Earth, if existent. In the following, we explore if carbon-based macromolecules (such as DNA) in the environments of stars other than the Sun are able to survive the effects of energetic stellar radiation, such as UV-C in the wavelength band between 200 and 290 nm. We focus on main-sequence stars akin to the Sun, but of hotter (F-type stars) and cooler (K- and M-type stars) surface temperature. Emphasis is placed on investigating the radiative environment in stellar habitable zones (HZs). Stellar habitable zones have an important relevance in astrobiology because they constitute circumstellar regions in which a planet of suitable size can have surface temperatures for water to exist in liquid form.

  8. Alien life matters: reflections on cosmopolitanism, otherness, and astrobiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andre Novoa

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available This is a synaptic paper that invites the reader to take a stroll on the edges of cross-disciplinary knowledge. We will walk the roads of anthropology, history, philosophy, astronomy and biology. It is mainly a theoretical article, where I attempt to provide links between authors and theories that were, at first sight, unrelated. In doing so, this paper is aimed at making one controversial claim: ideologically and politically speaking, cosmopolitanism may never fully transcend itself beyond a debate until and unless humankind encounters alien life forms. The argument is based on a simple equation. Despite all the quarrels and debates around the concept, it seems innocuous to assume that cosmopolitanism is the search for a certain universal identity or, at least, a search for a common culturalia, i.e. the cultural grounds wherein local and global senses of universalism come into being (section 2. In spite of the fact that identities are built in opposition and supported by difference (section 3, cosmopolitanism might only be possible as a political project (cosmopolitics when humankind is faced with life forms that are capable of providing true Otherness. I believe that this may explain why we have been fascinated by the utopias of extra-terrestrials for many centuries now (section 4. These utopias are present in a diverse array of knowledges, ranging from science to art, literature or even religion. They have been around for at least 500 years. Until now, all of them have been trapped in the realm of imagination, but there is one concrete cluster of knowledge that has attempted to transpose these imaginings into reality: the promising discipline of astrobiology. Astrobiology is mainly troubled by the de-naturalisation of Earth in order to create analogues for the study of life elsewhere in the cosmos. Provocatively, I end up this paper stating that this may well be the most cosmopolitical practice available to us (section 5.

  9. Discrimination of Pigments of Microalgae, Bacteria and Yeasts Using Lightweight Handheld Raman Spectrometers: Prospects for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jehlicka, J.; Osterrothova, K.; Nedbalova, L.; Gunde-Cimerman, N.; Oren, A.

    2014-06-01

    Handheld Raman instrumentation with 532 nm lasers can be used to distinguish carotenoids of autotrophic microalgae, purple sulfur bacteria, halophilic Archaea and pigmented yeasts. Pigments are proposed as biomarkers for astrobiology of Mars.

  10. Internalizing Null Extraterrestrial "Signals": An Astrobiological App for a Technological Society

    OpenAIRE

    Chaisson, Eric J.

    2014-01-01

    One of the beneficial outcomes of searching for life in the Universe is that it grants greater awareness of our own problems here on Earth. Lack of contact with alien beings to date might actually comprise a null "signal" pointing humankind toward a viable future. Astrobiology has surprising practical applications to human society; within the larger cosmological context of cosmic evolution, astrobiology clarifies the energetic essence of complex systems throughout the Universe, including tech...

  11. Proceedings of the Astrobiology Science Conference 2010. Evolution and Life: Surviving Catastrophes and Extremes on Earth and Beyond

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    The Program of the 2010 Astrobiology Science Conference: Evolution and Life: Surviving Catastrophes and Extremes on Earth and Beyond, included sessions on: 50 Years of Exobiology and Astrobiology: Greatest Hits; Extraterrestrial Molecular Evolution and Pre-Biological Chemistry: From the Interstellar Medium to the Solar System I; Human Exploration, Astronaut Health; Diversity in Astrobiology Research and Education; Titan: Past, Present, and Future; Energy Flow in Microbial Ecosystems; Extraterrestrial Molecular Evolution and Prebiological Chemistry: From the Interstellar Medium to the Solar System II; Astrobiology in Orbit; Astrobiology and Interdisciplinary Communication; Science from Rio Tinto: An Acidic Environment; Can We Rule Out Spontaneous Generation of RNA as the Key Step in the Origin of Life?; How Hellish Was the Hadean Earth?; Results from ASTEP and Other Astrobiology Field Campaigns I; Prebiotic Evolution: From Chemistry to Life I; Adaptation of Life in Hostile Space Environments; Extrasolar Terrestrial Planets I: Formation and Composition; Collaborative Tools and Technology for Astrobiology; Results from ASTEP and Other Astrobiology Field Campaigns II; Prebiotic Evolution: From Chemistry to Life II; Survival, Growth, and Evolution of Microrganisms in Model Extraterrestrial Environments; Extrasolar Terrestrial Planets II: Habitability and Life; Planetary Science Decadal Survey Update; Astrobiology Research Funding; Bioessential Elements Through Space and Time I; State of the Art in Life Detection; Terrestrial Evolution: Implications for the Past, Present, and Future of Life on Earth; Psychrophiles and Polar Environments; Life in Volcanic Environments: On Earth and Beyond; Geochronology and Astrobiology On and Off the Earth; Bioessential Elements Through Space and Time II; Origins and Evolution of Genetic Systems; Evolution of Advanced Life; Water-rich Asteroids and Moons: Composition and Astrobiological Potential; Impact Events and Evolution; A Warm, Wet

  12. Astrobiological Aspects of Radiation Chemistry in Europa's Icy Regolith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlson, R. W.; Hand, K. P.

    2006-05-01

    Jupiter's moon Europa, with its likely subsurface ocean and young, active surface, is a promising habitat for life. Europa orbits in the heart of Jupiter's powerful magnetosphere and suffers intense energetic particle bombardment, producing both positive and negative aspects for astrobiology at Europa. Ionizing radiation can produce oxidants that could support a radiation-driven ecology as proposed by Chyba. On the other hand, biomolecular evidence for life that may be upwelled to the surface is rapidly altered by irradiation, complicating astrobiological searches for evidence of life. We present an overview of laboratory work performed at JPL and elsewhere and observational results related to these two aspects. The oxidants hydrogen peroxide and molecular oxygen are known to exist on Europa and the radiolytic production of these species has been studied in the laboratory for both electron and ion irradiation. Laboratory- measured equilibrium concentrations of H2O2, where production and destruction rates are equal, are in general agreement with the observed 0.1% molar abundance on Europa. The shape of Europa's peroxide band is consistent with the line shapes observed in radiolysis and with H2O2 dispersed in water ice rather than occurring as H2O2 aggregates. Surprisingly, molecular oxygen may be even more abundant on Europa even though O2 is extremely volatile ande would be expected to escape from the ice surface. Radiolysis can produce molecular oxygen and appears to simultaneously alter the ice matrix, trapping the O2. Other species observed on Europa are CO2 and SO2, and laboratory radiolysis of these species in H2O ice produces carbonic and sulfuric acid, respectively. We are studying the radiolytic degradation of biomarkers in ice at Europa temperatures by studying both simple organics and more complex biomolecules, including microorganisms. Hydrocarbon radiolysis yields carbon dioxide and methane, which can escape the system and results in loss of carbon. In

  13. First Light from Extrasolar Planets and Implications for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richardson, L. Jeremy; Seager, Sara; Harrington, Joseph; Deming, Drake

    2005-01-01

    The first light from an extrasolar planet was recently detected. These results, obtained for two transiting extrasolar planets at different infrared wavelengths, open a new era in the field of extrasolar planet detection and characterization because for the first time we can now detect planets beyond the solar system directly. Using the Spitzer Space Telescope at 24 microns, we observed the modulation of combined light (star plus planet) from the HD 209458 system as the planet disappeared behind the star during secondary eclipse and later re-emerged, thereby isolating the light from the planet. We obtained a planet-to-star ratio of 0.26% at 24 microns, corresponding to a brightness temperature of 1130 + / - 150 K. We will describe this result in detail, explain what it can tell us about the atmosphere of HD 209458 b, and discuss implications for the field of astrobiology. These results represent a significant step on the path to detecting terrestrial planets around other stars and in understanding their atmospheres in terms of composition and temperature.

  14. Automating X-ray Fluorescence Analysis for Rapid Astrobiology Surveys.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, David R; Flannery, David T; Lanka, Ravi; Allwood, Abigail C; Bue, Brian D; Clark, Benton C; Elam, W Timothy; Estlin, Tara A; Hodyss, Robert P; Hurowitz, Joel A; Liu, Yang; Wade, Lawrence A

    2015-11-01

    A new generation of planetary rover instruments, such as PIXL (Planetary Instrument for X-ray Lithochemistry) and SHERLOC (Scanning Habitable Environments with Raman Luminescence for Organics and Chemicals) selected for the Mars 2020 mission rover payload, aim to map mineralogical and elemental composition in situ at microscopic scales. These instruments will produce large spectral cubes with thousands of channels acquired over thousands of spatial locations, a large potential science yield limited mainly by the time required to acquire a measurement after placement. A secondary bottleneck also faces mission planners after downlink; analysts must interpret the complex data products quickly to inform tactical planning for the next command cycle. This study demonstrates operational approaches to overcome these bottlenecks by specialized early-stage science data processing. Onboard, simple real-time systems can perform a basic compositional assessment, recognizing specific features of interest and optimizing sensor integration time to characterize anomalies. On the ground, statistically motivated visualization can make raw uncalibrated data products more interpretable for tactical decision making. Techniques such as manifold dimensionality reduction can help operators comprehend large databases at a glance, identifying trends and anomalies in data. These onboard and ground-side analyses can complement a quantitative interpretation. We evaluate system performance for the case study of PIXL, an X-ray fluorescence spectrometer. Experiments on three representative samples demonstrate improved methods for onboard and ground-side automation and illustrate new astrobiological science capabilities unavailable in previous planetary instruments. Dimensionality reduction-Planetary science-Visualization.

  15. Life and the Universe: From Astrochemistry to Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allamandola, Louis J.

    2013-01-01

    Great strides have been made in our understanding of interstellar material thanks to advances in infrared astronomy and laboratory astrophysics. Ionized polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), shockingly large molecules by earlier astrochemical standards, are widespread and very abundant throughout much of the cosmos. In cold molecular clouds, the birthplace of planets and stars, interstellar atoms and molecules freeze onto extremely cold dust and ice particles forming mixed molecular ices dominated by simple species such as water, methanol, ammonia, and carbon monoxide. Within these clouds, and especially in the vicinity of star and planet forming regions, these ices and PAHs are processed by ultraviolet light and cosmic rays forming hundreds of far more complex species, some of biogenic interest. Eventually, these are delivered to primordial planets by comets and meteorites. As these materials are the building blocks of comets and related to carbonaceous micrometeorites, they are likely to be important sources of complex organic materials delivered to habitable planets (including the primordial Earth) and their composition may be related to the origin of life. This talk will focus on the chemical evolution of these cosmic materials and their relevance to astrobiology.

  16. Astrobiology, space and the future age of discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blumberg, Baruch S

    2011-02-13

    Astrobiology is the study of the origins, evolution, distribution and future of life in the Universe, and specifically seeks to understand the origin of life and to test the hypothesis that life exists elsewhere than on Earth. There is a general mathematics, physics and chemistry; that is, scientific laws that obtain on Earth also do so elsewhere. Is there a general biology? Is the Universe life-rich or is Earth an isolated island of biology? Exploration in the Age of Enlightenment required the collection of data in unexplored regions and the use of induction and empiricism to derive models and natural laws. The current search for extra-terrestrial life has a similar goal, but with a much greater amount of data and with computers to help with management, correlations, pattern recognition and analysis. There are 60 active space missions, many of them aiding in the search for life. There is not a universally accepted definition of life, but there are a series of characteristics that can aid in the identification of life elsewhere. The study of locations on Earth with similarities to early Mars and other space objects could provide a model that can be used in the search for extra-terrestrial life.

  17. A Micro Fluorescent Activated Cell Sorter for Astrobiology Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Platt, Donald W.; Hoover, Richard B.

    2009-01-01

    A micro-scale Fluorescent Activated Cell Sorter (microFACS) for astrobiology applications is under development. This device is designed to have a footprint of 7 cm x 7 cm x 4 cm and allow live-dead counts and sorting of cells that have fluorescent characteristics from staining. The FACS system takes advantage of microfluidics to create a cell sorter that can fit in the palm of the hand. A micron-scale channel allows cells to pass by a blue diode which causes emission of marker-expressed cells which are detected by a filtered photodetector. A small microcontroller then counts cells and operates high speed valves to select which chamber the cell is collected in (a collection chamber or a waste chamber). Cells with the expressed characteristic will be collected in the collection chamber. This system has been built and is currently being tested. We are also designing a system with integrated MEMS-based pumps and valves for a small and compact unit to fly on small satellite-based biology experiments.

  18. Secondary School Students' Knowledge and Opinions on Astrobiology Topics and Related Social Issues

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oreiro, Raquel; Solbes, Jordi

    2017-01-01

    Astrobiology is the study of the origin of life on Earth and the distribution of life in the Universe. Its multidisciplinary approach, social and philosophical implications, and appeal within the discipline and beyond make astrobiology a uniquely qualified subject for general science education. In this study, student knowledge and opinions on astrobiology topics were investigated. Eighty-nine students in their last year of compulsory education (age 15) completed a written questionnaire that consisted of 10 open questions on the topic of astrobiology. The results indicate that students have significant difficulties understanding the origin of life on Earth, despite exposure to the topic by way of the assigned textbooks. The students were often unaware of past or present achievements in the search for life within the Solar System and beyond, topics that are far less commonly seen in textbooks. Student questionnaire answers also indicated that students had problems in reasoning and critical thinking when asked for their opinions on issues such as the potential for life beyond Earth, the question of whether UFOs exist, or what our place is in the Universe. Astrobiology might help initiate student awareness as to current thinking on these matters and should be considered for general science education.

  19. Innovation @ NASA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roman, Juan A.

    2014-01-01

    This presentation provides an overview of the activities National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is doing to encourage innovation across the agency. All information provided is available publicly.

  20. Infrared Spectroscopy of Parent Volatiles in Comets: Implications for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    DiSanti, Michael A.

    2010-01-01

    Current cometary orbits provide information on their recent dynamical history. However, determining a given comet's formation region from its current dynamical state alone is complicated by radial migration in the proto-planetary disk and by dynamical interactions with the growing giant planets. Because comets reside for long periods of time in the outer Solar System, the ices contained in their nuclei (native ices) retain a relatively well-preserved footprint of when and where they formed, and this in turn can provide clues to conditions in the formation epoch. As a comet approaches the Sun, sublimation of its native ices releases parent volatiles into the coma where they can be measured spectroscopically. The past to - 15 years have seen the advent of infrared spectrometers with high sensitivity between about 2.8 and 5.0 micron, enabling a taxonomy among comets based on abundances of parent volatiles (e.g., H2O, CO, CH4, C2H6, HCN, CH30H, H2CO, NH3). Such molecules are of keen interest to Astrobiology, as they include important pre-biotic species that likely were required for the emergence of life on Earth and perhaps elsewhere. Approximately 20 comets have thus far been characterized, beginning with C/1996 82 (Hyakutake) in 1996. Molecular production rates are established through comparison of observed emission line intensities with those predicted by quantum mechanical fluorescence models. Abundances of parent volatiles (relative to H2O) vary among even the relatively small number of comets sampled, with the most volatile species (CO and CH4) displaying the largest variations. Techniques developed for measuring parent volatile abundances in comets will be discussed, as will possible implications for their formation.

  1. Walk Through Solar System Times: An Exhibit with an Astrobiology Emphasis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheung, C. Y.

    2012-01-01

    In this astrobiology outreach project, we attempt to present the research of the Goddard Center for Astrobiology (GCA) in the context of the history of the Solar System. GCA research emphasizes the origin and formation of complex pre-biotic organic materials in extraterrestrial environments and explores whether the delivery of these primordial materials and water to the early Earth enabled the emergence and evolution of life. The content expounds on areas that are usually not touched upon in a timeline of the Earth's formation. The exhibit addresses the questions: How did our solar system form? How is the formation of our solar systems similar or different from others? How did the organic molecules we observe in space get to the Earth? What conditions are most suitable for life? We will address the issues and challenges of designing the exhibit and of explaining advanced astrobiology research topics to the public.

  2. Astrobiology as an Interdisciplinary Starting Point to Natural Sciences for High-potential Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leitner, J. J.; Firneis, M. G.; Hitzenberger, R.

    2013-09-01

    One of the corner stones of the Research Platform on ExoLife, University of Vienna, Austria is public outreach and education with respect to astrobiology, exoplanets, and planetary sciences. Since 2009 several initiatives have been started by the Research Platform to concentrate the interest of students in and outside the University onto natural sciences. Astrobiology as a very interdisciplinary scientific discipline with questions like "Are we alone in the Universe?," "How unique is Earth as a planet?" or "How did life originate?" will fascinate youngsters and junior scientists (see [1]).

  3. Astrobiological aspects of Mars and human presence: pros and cons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horneck, G

    2008-08-01

    After the realization of the International Space Station, human exploratory missions to Moon or Mars, i.e. beyond low Earth orbit, are widely considered as the next logical step of peaceful cooperation in space on a global scale. Besides the human desire to extend the window of habitability, human exploratory missions are driven by several aspects of science, technology, culture and economy. Mars is currently considered as a major target in the search for life beyond the Earth. Understanding the history of water on Mars appears to be one of the clues to the puzzle on the probability of life on Mars. On Earth microorganisms have flourished for more than 3.5 Ga and have developed strategies to cope with so-called extreme conditions (e.g., hot vents, permafrost, subsurface regions, rocks or salt crystals). Therefore, in search for life on Mars, microorganisms are the most likely candidates for a putative biota on Mars and the search for morphological or chemical signatures of life or its relics is one of the primary and most exciting goals of Mars exploration. The presence of humans on the surface of Mars will substantially increase this research potential, e.g., by supporting deep subsurface drilling and by allowing intellectual collection and sophisticated in situ analysis of samples of astrobiological interest. On the other hand, such long-duration missions beyond LEO will add a new dimension to human space flight, concerning the distance of travel, the radiation environment, the gravity levels, the duration of the mission, and the level of confinement and isolation the crew will be exposed to. This will raise the significance of several health issues, above all radiation protection, gravity related effects as well as psychological issues. Furthermore, the import of internal and external microorganisms inevitably accompanying any human mission to Mars, or brought purposely to Mars as part of a bioregenerative life support system needs careful consideration with

  4. NASA reports

    Science.gov (United States)

    Obrien, John E.; Fisk, Lennard A.; Aldrich, Arnold A.; Utsman, Thomas E.; Griffin, Michael D.; Cohen, Aaron

    1992-01-01

    Activities and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) programs, both ongoing and planned, are described by NASA administrative personnel from the offices of Space Science and Applications, Space Systems Development, Space Flight, Exploration, and from the Johnson Space Center. NASA's multi-year strategic plan, called Vision 21, is also discussed. It proposes to use the unique perspective of space to better understand Earth. Among the NASA programs mentioned are the Magellan to Venus and Galileo to Jupiter spacecraft, the Cosmic Background Explorer, Pegsat (the first Pegasus payload), Hubble, the Joint U.S./German ROSAT X-ray Mission, Ulysses to Jupiter and over the sun, the Astro-Spacelab Mission, and the Gamma Ray Observatory. Copies of viewgraphs that illustrate some of these missions, and others, are provided. Also discussed were life science research plans, economic factors as they relate to space missions, and the outlook for international cooperation.

  5. Applicability of cryoconite consortia of microorganisms and glacier-dwelling animals in astrobiological studies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zawierucha Krzysztof

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available For several years it has been of interest to astrobiologists to focus on Earth’s glaciers as a habitat that can be similar to glaciers on other moons and planets. Microorganisms on glaciers form consortia – cryoconite granules (cryoconites. They are granular/spherical mineral particles connected with archaea, cyanobacteria, heterotrophic bacteria, algae, fungi, and micro animals (mainly Tardigrada and Rotifera. Cryophilic organisms inhabiting glaciers have been studied in different aspects: from taxonomy, ecology and biogeography, to searching of biotechnological potentials and physiological strategies to survive in extreme glacial habitats. However, they have never been used in astrobiological experiments. The main aim of this paper is brief review of literature and supporting assumptions that cryoconite granules and microinvertebrates on glaciers, are promising models in astrobiology for looking for analogies and survival strategies in terms of icy planets and moons. So far, astrobiological research have been conducted on single strains of prokaryotes or microinvertebrates but never on a consortium of them. Due to the hypothetical similarity of glaciers on the Earth to those on other planets these cryoconites consortia of microorganisms and glacier microinvertebrates may be applied in astrobiological experiments instead of the limno-terrestrial ones used currently. Those consortia and animals have qualities to use them in such studies and they may be the key to understanding how organisms are able to survive, reproduce and remain active at low temperatures.

  6. NASA/DoD Aerospace Knowledge Diffusion Research Project. Report Number 6. The Relationship between the Use of U.S. Government Technical Reports by U.S. Aerospace Engineers and Scientists and Selected Institutional and Sociometric Variables

    Science.gov (United States)

    1991-01-01

    Peter R.; James D. Schriner; Bettie F. Farace ; and Richard V. Farace . The Assessment of NASA Technical Information. NASA CR-181367. Washington, DC... Farace ; and Richard V. Farace . The Assessment of NASA Technical Information. NASA CR-181367. Washington, DC: National Aeronautics and Space

  7. Understanding the nineteenth century origins of disciplines: lessons for astrobiology today?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brazelton, William J.; Sullivan, Woodruff T., III

    2009-10-01

    Astrobiology's goal of promoting interdisciplinary research is an attempt to reverse a trend that began two centuries ago with the formation of the first specialized scientific disciplines. We have examined this era of discipline formation in order to make a comparison with the situation today in astrobiology. Will astrobiology remain interdisciplinary or is it becoming yet another specialty? As a case study, we have investigated effects on the scientific literature when a specialized community is formed by analyzing the citations within papers published during 1802-1856 in Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society (Phil. Trans.), the most important ‘generalist’ journal of its day, and Transactions of the Geological Society of London (Trans. Geol. Soc.), the first important disciplinary journal in the sciences. We find that these two journals rarely cited each other, and papers published in Trans. Geol. Soc. cited fewer interdisciplinary sources than did geology papers in Phil. Trans. After geology had become established as a successful specialized discipline, geologists returned to publishing papers in Phil. Trans., but they wrote in the new, highly specialized style developed in Trans. Geol. Soc. They had succeeded in not only creating a new scientific discipline, but also a new way of doing science with its own modes of research and communication. A similar citation analysis was applied to papers published over the period 2001-2008 in the contemporary journals Astrobiology and the International Journal of Astrobiology to test the hypothesis that astrobiologists are in the early stages of creating their own specialized community. Although still too early to reliably detect any but the largest trends, there is no evidence yet that astrobiologists are drifting into their own isolated discipline. Instead, to date they appear to remain interdisciplinary.

  8. Widening Perspectives: The Intellectual and Social Benefits of Astrobiology (Regardless of Whether Extraterrestrial Life is Discovered or Not)

    OpenAIRE

    Crawford, Ian A.

    2017-01-01

    Astrobiology is usually defined as the study of the origin, evolution, distribution, and future of life in the universe. As such it is inherently interdisciplinary and cannot help but engender a worldview infused by cosmic and evolutionary perspectives. Both these attributes of the study of astrobiology are, and will increasingly prove to be, beneficial to society regardless of whether extraterrestrial life is discovered or not.

  9. Widening perspectives: the intellectual and social benefits of astrobiology (regardless of whether extraterrestrial life is discovered or not)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crawford, I. A.

    2018-01-01

    Astrobiology is usually defined as the study of the origin, evolution, distribution and future of life in the Universe. As such it is inherently interdisciplinary and cannot help but engender a worldview infused by cosmic and evolutionary perspectives. Both these attributes of the study of astrobiology are, and will increasingly prove to be, beneficial to society regardless of whether extraterrestrial life is discovered or not.

  10. Spectroscopic Studies of Molecular Systems relevant in Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fornaro, Teresa

    2016-01-01

    In the Astrobiology context, the study of the physico-chemical interactions involving "building blocks of life" in plausible prebiotic and space-like conditions is fundamental to shed light on the processes that led to emergence of life on Earth as well as to molecular chemical evolution in space. In this PhD Thesis, such issues have been addressed both experimentally and computationally by employing vibrational spectroscopy, which has shown to be an effective tool to investigate the variety of intermolecular interactions that play a key role in self-assembling mechanisms of nucleic acid components and their binding to mineral surfaces. In particular, in order to dissect the contributions of the different interactions to the overall spectroscopic signals and shed light on the intricate experimental data, feasible computational protocols have been developed for the characterization of the spectroscopic properties of such complex systems. This study has been carried out through a multi-step strategy, starting the investigation from the spectroscopic properties of the isolated nucleobases, then studying the perturbation induced by the interaction with another molecule (molecular dimers), towards condensed phases like the molecular solid, up to the case of nucleic acid components adsorbed on minerals. A proper modeling of these weakly bound molecular systems has required, firstly, a validation of dispersion-corrected Density Functional Theory methods for simulating anharmonic vibrational properties. The isolated nucleobases and some of their dimers have been used as benchmark set for identifying a general, reliable and effective computational procedure based on fully anharmonic quantum mechanical computations of the vibrational wavenumbers and infrared intensities within the generalized second order vibrational perturbation theory (GVPT2) approach, combined with the cost-effective dispersion-corrected density functional B3LYP-D3, in conjunction with basis sets of

  11. Carl Woese, Dick Young, and the roots of astrobiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rummel, John D

    2014-01-01

    The beginning of the space age in the late 1950s gave rise to innovative and interdisciplinary research concepts and perspectives, including the concept of "exobiology" as a way to approach the fundamental aspects of biology through a study of life outside of the Earth, if it existed. This concept was embodied by NASA into its formal Exobiology Program and into the philosophy of the program both before and after the Viking missions that were launched to Mars to search for signs of life in 1975. Due to both management flexibility and an acceptance of the interdisciplinary nature of the problem of "life in the universe," NASA program managers, and particularly Richard S Young who ran the Exobiology Program beginning 1967, have made some excellent investments in paradigm altering science of great use both on Earth and on future space missions. The work of Carl Woese is one such example, which has revolutionized our understanding of the microbial world and the relationships of all life on Earth.

  12. NASA's computer science research program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larsen, R. L.

    1983-01-01

    Following a major assessment of NASA's computing technology needs, a new program of computer science research has been initiated by the Agency. The program includes work in concurrent processing, management of large scale scientific databases, software engineering, reliable computing, and artificial intelligence. The program is driven by applications requirements in computational fluid dynamics, image processing, sensor data management, real-time mission control and autonomous systems. It consists of university research, in-house NASA research, and NASA's Research Institute for Advanced Computer Science (RIACS) and Institute for Computer Applications in Science and Engineering (ICASE). The overall goal is to provide the technical foundation within NASA to exploit advancing computing technology in aerospace applications.

  13. Measuring the effect of an astrobiology course on student optimism regarding extraterrestrial life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morgan, David L.

    2017-07-01

    Students in an introductory undergraduate Astrobiology course were given a pre/post-test based on the Drake Equation in an attempt to measure changes in their perceptions regarding the prevalence of life in the Galaxy after taking the course. The results indicated that, after taking the course, the students were considerably more optimistic, by a 2 to 1 margin or more, about the prospect of habitable planets, the origin of life, and the evolution of intelligence in other planetary systems. The results suggest that, while it may not be the explicit goal of an astrobiology course to change student beliefs about the abundance or rarity of extraterrestrial life, such changes in opinion can and do occur.

  14. Astrobiological Field Campaign to a Volcanosedimentary Mars Analogue Methane Producing Subsurface Protected Ecosystem: Imuruk Lake (Alaska

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. Gómez

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Viking missions reported adverse conditions for life in Mars surface. High hydrogen signal obtained by Mars orbiters has increased the interest in subsurface prospection as putative protected Mars environment with life potential. Permafrost has attracted considerable interest from an astrobiological point of view due to the recently reported results from the Mars exploration rovers. Considerable studies have been developed on extreme ecosystems and permafrost in particular, to evaluate the possibility of life on Mars and to test specific automated life detection instruments for space missions. The biodiversity of permafrost located on the Bering Land Bridge National Preserve has been studied as an example of subsurface protected niche of astrobiological interest. Different conventional (enrichment and isolation and molecular ecology techniques (cloning, fluorescence “in situ” probe hybridization, FISH have been used for isolation and bacterial identification.

  15. Space as a Tool for Astrobiology: Review and Recommendations for Experimentations in Earth Orbit and Beyond

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cottin, Hervé; Kotler, Julia Michelle; Billi, Daniela; Cockell, Charles; Demets, René; Ehrenfreund, Pascale; Elsaesser, Andreas; d'Hendecourt, Louis; van Loon, Jack J. W. A.; Martins, Zita; Onofri, Silvano; Quinn, Richard C.; Rabbow, Elke; Rettberg, Petra; Ricco, Antonio J.; Slenzka, Klaus; de la Torre, Rosa; de Vera, Jean-Pierre; Westall, Frances; Carrasco, Nathalie; Fresneau, Aurélien; Kawaguchi, Yuko; Kebukawa, Yoko; Nguyen, Dara; Poch, Olivier; Saiagh, Kafila; Stalport, Fabien; Yamagishi, Akihiko; Yano, Hajime; Klamm, Benjamin A.

    2017-07-01

    The space environment is regularly used for experiments addressing astrobiology research goals. The specific conditions prevailing in Earth orbit and beyond, notably the radiative environment (photons and energetic particles) and the possibility to conduct long-duration measurements, have been the main motivations for developing experimental concepts to expose chemical or biological samples to outer space, or to use the reentry of a spacecraft on Earth to simulate the fall of a meteorite. This paper represents an overview of past and current research in astrobiology conducted in Earth orbit and beyond, with a special focus on ESA missions such as Biopan, STONE (on Russian FOTON capsules) and EXPOSE facilities (outside the International Space Station). The future of exposure platforms is discussed, notably how they can be improved for better science return, and how to incorporate the use of small satellites such as those built in cubesat format.

  16. Ethics and the Potential Conflicts between Astrobiology, Planetary Protection, and Commercial Use of Space

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erik Persson

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available A high standard of planetary protection is important for astrobiology, though the risk for contamination can never be zero. It is therefore important to find a balance. If extraterrestrial life has a moral standing in its own right, it will also affect what we have to do to protect it. The questions of how far we need to go to protect extraterrestrial life will be even more acute and complicated when the time comes to use habitable worlds for commercial purposes. There will also be conflicts between those who want to set a world aside for more research and those who want to give the green light for development. I believe it is important to be proactive in relation to these issues. The aim of my project is therefore to identify, elucidate, and if possible, suggest solutions to potential conflicts between astrobiology, planetary protection, and commercial use of space.

  17. Mud Volcanoes - A New Class of Sites for Geological and Astrobiological Exploration of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, C.C.; Oehler, D.Z.; Baker, D.M.

    2009-01-01

    Mud volcanoes provide a unique low-temperature window into the Earth s subsurface - including the deep biosphere - and may prove to be significant sources of atmospheric methane. The identification of analogous features on Mars would provide an important new class of sites for geological and astrobiological exploration. We report new work suggesting that features in Acidalia Planitia are most consistent with their being mud volcanoes.

  18. Astrobiology Outreach and the Nature of Science: The Role of Creativity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliver, Carol; Walter, Malcolm R.

    2012-01-01

    Abstract There is concern in many developed countries that school students are turning away from science. However, students may be choosing not to study science and dismissing the possibility of a scientific career because, in the junior secondary years, they gain a false view of science and the work of scientists. There is a disparity between science as it is portrayed at school and science as it is practiced. This paper describes a study to explore whether engaging in science through astrobiology outreach activities may improve students' understanding of the nature and processes of science, and how this may influence their interest in a career in science. The results suggest that the students attending these Mars research–related outreach activities are more interested in science than the average student but are lacking in understanding of aspects of the nature of science. A significant difference was detected between pre- and posttest understandings of some concepts of the nature of science. Key Words: Science education—School science—Creativity—Nature and processes of science—Attitudes—Astrobiology. Astrobiology 12, 1143–1153. PMID:23134090

  19. Lunar and Planetary Science XXXV: Astrobiology: Analogs and Applications to the Search for Life

    Science.gov (United States)

    2004-01-01

    The session "Astrobiology: Analogs and Applications to the Search for Life" included the folowing reports:The Search for Life on Mars Using Macroscopically Visible Microbial Mats (Stromatolites) in 3.5/3.3 Ga Cherts from the Pilbara in Australia and Barberton in South Africa as Analogues; Life in a Mars Analog: Microbial Activity Associated with Carbonate Cemented Lava Breccias from NW Spitsbergen; Groundwater-fed Iron-rich Microbial Mats in a Freshwater Creek: Growth Cycles and Fossilization Potential of Microbial Features; Episodic Fossilization of Microorganisms on an Annual Timescale in an Anthropogenically Modified Natural Environment: Geochemical Controls and Implications for Astrobiology; Proterozoic Microfossils and Their Implications for Recognizing Life on Mars; Microbial Alteration of Volcanic Glass in Modern and Ancient Oceanic Crust as a Proxy for Studies of Extraterrestrial Material ; Olivine Alteration on Earth and Mars; Searching for an Acidic Aquifer in the R!o Tinto Basin. First Geobiology Results of MARTE Project; In-Field Testing of Life Detection Instruments and Protocols in a Mars Analogue Arctic Environment; Habitability of the Shallow Subsurface on Mars: Clues from the Meteorites; Mars Analog Rio Tinto Experiment (MARTE): 2003 Drilling Campaign to Search for a Subsurface Biosphere at Rio Tinto Spain; Characterization of the Organic Matter in an Archean Chert (Warrawoona, Australia); and The Solfatara Crater, Italy: Characterization of Hydrothermal Deposits, Biosignatures and Their Astrobiological Implication.

  20. Role of the observer in the scientific process in astrobiology and in defining life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kolb, Vera M.

    2010-09-01

    The role of the observer in the scientific process has been studied in various contexts, including philosophical. It is notorious that the experiments are theory-loaded, that the observers pick and choose what they consider important based on their scientific and cultural backgrounds, and that the same phenomenon may be studied by different observers from different angles. In this paper we critically review various authors' views of the role of the observer in the scientific process, as they apply to astrobiology. Astrobiology is especially vulnerable to the role of the observer, since it is an interdisciplinary science. Thus, the backgrounds of the observers in the astrobiology field are even more heterogeneous than in the other sciences. The definition of life is also heavily influenced by the observer of life who injects his/her own prejudices in the process of observing and defining life. Such prejudices are often dictated by the state of science, instrumentation, and the science politics at the time, as well as the educational, scientific, cultural and other background of the observer.

  1. Microbes in the upper atmosphere and unique opportunities for astrobiology research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, David J

    2013-10-01

    Microbial taxa from every major biological lineage have been detected in Earth's upper atmosphere. The goal of this review is to communicate (1) relevant astrobiology questions that can be addressed with upper atmosphere microbiology studies and (2) available sampling methods for collecting microbes at extreme altitudes. Precipitation, mountain stations, airplanes, balloons, rockets, and satellites are all feasible routes for conducting aerobiology research. However, more efficient air samplers are needed, and contamination is also a pervasive problem in the field. Measuring microbial signatures without false positives in the upper atmosphere might contribute to sterilization and bioburden reduction methods for proposed astrobiology missions. Intriguingly, environmental conditions in the upper atmosphere resemble the surface conditions of Mars (extreme cold, hypobaria, desiccation, and irradiation). Whether terrestrial microbes are active in the upper atmosphere is an area of intense research interest. If, in fact, microbial metabolism, growth, or replication is achievable independent of Earth's surface, then the search for habitable zones on other worlds should be broadened to include atmospheres (e.g., the high-altitude clouds of Venus). Furthermore, viable cells in the heavily irradiated upper atmosphere of Earth could help identify microbial genes or enzymes that bestow radiation resistance. Compelling astrobiology questions on the origin of life (if the atmosphere synthesized organic aerosols), evolution (if airborne transport influenced microbial mutation rates and speciation), and panspermia (outbound or inbound) are also testable in Earth's upper atmosphere.

  2. Developing the critical thinking skills of astrobiology students through creative and scientific inquiry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foster, Jamie S; Lemus, Judith D

    2015-01-01

    Scientific inquiry represents a multifaceted approach to explore and understand the natural world. Training students in the principles of scientific inquiry can help promote the scientific learning process as well as help students enhance their understanding of scientific research. Here, we report on the development and implementation of a learning module that introduces astrobiology students to the concepts of creative and scientific inquiry, as well as provide practical exercises to build critical thinking skills. The module contained three distinct components: (1) a creative inquiry activity designed to introduce concepts regarding the role of creativity in scientific inquiry; (2) guidelines to help astrobiology students formulate and self-assess questions regarding various scientific content and imagery; and (3) a practical exercise where students were allowed to watch a scientific presentation and practice their analytical skills. Pre- and post-course surveys were used to assess the students' perceptions regarding creative and scientific inquiry and whether this activity impacted their understanding of the scientific process. Survey results indicate that the exercise helped improve students' science skills by promoting awareness regarding the role of creativity in scientific inquiry and building their confidence in formulating and assessing scientific questions. Together, the module and survey results confirm the need to include such inquiry-based activities into the higher education classroom, thereby helping students hone their critical thinking and question asking skill set and facilitating their professional development in astrobiology.

  3. The Cuatro Ciénegas Basin in Coahuila, Mexico: An Astrobiological Precambrian Park

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siefert, Janet L.; Escalante, Ana E.; Elser, James J.; Eguiarte, Luis E.

    2012-01-01

    Abstract The Cuatro Ciénegas Basin (CCB) is a rare oasis in the Chihuahuan Desert in the state of Coahuila, Mexico. It has a biological endemism similar to that of the Galapagos Islands, and its spring-fed ecosystems have very low nutrient content (nitrogen or phosphorous) and are dominated by diverse microbialites. Thus, it has proven to be a distinctive opportunity for the field of astrobiology, as the CCB can be seen as a proxy for an earlier time in Earth's history, in particular the late Precambrian, the biological frontier when prokaryotic life yielded at least partial dominance to eukaryotes and multicellular life. It is a kind of ecological time machine that provides abundant opportunities for collaborative investigations by geochemists, geologists, ecologists, and population biologists in the study of the evolutionary processes that structured Earth-based life, especially in the microbial realm. The CCB is an object of investigation for the identification of biosignatures of past and present biota that can be used in our search for extraterrestrial life. In this review, we summarize CCB research efforts that began with microbial ecology and population biology projects and have since been expanded into broader efforts that involve biogeochemistry, comparative genomics, and assessments of biosignatures. We also propose that, in the future, the CCB is sanctioned as a “Precambrian Park” for astrobiology. Key Words: Microbial mats—Stromatolites—Early Earth—Extremophilic microorganisms—Microbial ecology. Astrobiology 12, 641–647. PMID:22920514

  4. NASA Astrophysics Technology Needs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stahl, H. Philip

    2012-01-01

    July 2010, NASA Office of Chief Technologist (OCT) initiated an activity to create and maintain a NASA integrated roadmap for 15 key technology areas which recommend an overall technology investment strategy and prioritize NASA?s technology programs to meet NASA?s strategic goals. Science Instruments, Observatories and Sensor Systems(SIOSS) roadmap addresses technology needs to achieve NASA?s highest priority objectives -- not only for the Science Mission Directorate (SMD), but for all of NASA.

  5. The Role of Synthetic Biology in NASA's Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rothschild, Lynn J.

    2016-01-01

    The time has come to for NASA to exploit synthetic biology in pursuit of its missions, including aeronautics, earth science, astrobiology and most notably, human exploration. Conversely, NASA advances the fundamental technology of synthetic biology as no one else can because of its unique expertise in the origin of life and life in extreme environments, including the potential for alternate life forms. This enables unique, creative "game changing" advances. NASA's requirement for minimizing upmass in flight will also drive the field toward miniaturization and automation. These drivers will greatly increase the utility of synthetic biology solutions for military, health in remote areas and commercial purposes. To this end, we have begun a program at NASA to explore the use of synthetic biology in NASA's missions, particular space exploration. As part of this program, we began hosting an iGEM team of undergraduates drawn from Brown and Stanford Universities to conduct synthetic biology research at NASA Ames Research Center. The 2011 team (http://2011.igem.org/Team:Brown-Stanford) produced an award-winning project on using synthetic biology as a basis for a human Mars settlement.

  6. NASA's Big Data Task Force

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holmes, C. P.; Kinter, J. L.; Beebe, R. F.; Feigelson, E.; Hurlburt, N. E.; Mentzel, C.; Smith, G.; Tino, C.; Walker, R. J.

    2017-12-01

    Two years ago NASA established the Ad Hoc Big Data Task Force (BDTF - https://science.nasa.gov/science-committee/subcommittees/big-data-task-force), an advisory working group with the NASA Advisory Council system. The scope of the Task Force included all NASA Big Data programs, projects, missions, and activities. The Task Force focused on such topics as exploring the existing and planned evolution of NASA's science data cyber-infrastructure that supports broad access to data repositories for NASA Science Mission Directorate missions; best practices within NASA, other Federal agencies, private industry and research institutions; and Federal initiatives related to big data and data access. The BDTF has completed its two-year term and produced several recommendations plus four white papers for NASA's Science Mission Directorate. This presentation will discuss the activities and results of the TF including summaries of key points from its focused study topics. The paper serves as an introduction to the papers following in this ESSI session.

  7. Identification and Characterization of Extremophile Microorganisms with Significance to Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bej, Asim K.

    2003-01-01

    It is now well recognized that microorganisms thrive in extreme ecological conditions such as geothermal vents, polar region, acid and alkaline lakes, and the cold pressurized depth of the ocean floor of this planet. Morphological, physiological, biochemical and genetic adaptations to extreme environments by these extremophile microorganisms have generated immense interest amongst astrobiologists who increasingly believe in the existence of extraterrestrial life. The evidence collected by NASA's space probe Galileo suggested the presence of liquid water and volcanic activity on Mars and Jupiter's satellite Europa. Volcanic activity provides some of the heat necessary to keep the water on Europa from freezing that could provide important dissolved chemicals needed by living organisms. The possibility of the existence of hypersaline alkaline lakes and evaporites confined within closed volcanic basins and impact craters on Mars, and a layer of liquid water under the ice on Europa provide sufficient 'raison d'etre' to study microorganisms in similar extreme environments on Earth, which could provide us with a model that would help establish the existence of extraterrestrial life on other planetary bodies. The objectives of the summer research project were as follows: (1) application of molecular approaches to help establish new species of extremophile microorganisms isolated from a hypersaline alkaline lake; and (2) identification of a major cold-shock gene (cspA) homolog from a psychrotolerant microorganism, PmagG1.

  8. NASA Schedule Management Handbook

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of schedule management is to provide the framework for time-phasing, resource planning, coordination, and communicating the necessary tasks within a work effort. The intent is to improve schedule management by providing recommended concepts, processes, and techniques used within the Agency and private industry. The intended function of this handbook is two-fold: first, to provide guidance for meeting the scheduling requirements contained in NPR 7120.5, NASA Space Flight Program and Project Management Requirements, NPR 7120.7, NASA Information Technology and Institutional Infrastructure Program and Project Requirements, NPR 7120.8, NASA Research and Technology Program and Project Management Requirements, and NPD 1000.5, Policy for NASA Acquisition. The second function is to describe the schedule management approach and the recommended best practices for carrying out this project control function. With regards to the above project management requirements documents, it should be noted that those space flight projects previously established and approved under the guidance of prior versions of NPR 7120.5 will continue to comply with those requirements until project completion has been achieved. This handbook will be updated as needed, to enhance efficient and effective schedule management across the Agency. It is acknowledged that most, if not all, external organizations participating in NASA programs/projects will have their own internal schedule management documents. Issues that arise from conflicting schedule guidance will be resolved on a case by case basis as contracts and partnering relationships are established. It is also acknowledged and understood that all projects are not the same and may require different levels of schedule visibility, scrutiny and control. Project type, value, and complexity are factors that typically dictate which schedule management practices should be employed.

  9. NASA's Earth Science Data Systems Standards Endorsement Process

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Ullman, Richard E; Enloe, Yonsook

    2005-01-01

    Starting in January 2004, NASA instituted a set of internal working groups to develop ongoing recommendations for the continuing broad evolution of Earth Science Data Systems development and management within NASA...

  10. NASA Guidelines for Promoting Scientific and Research Integrity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaminski, Amy P.; Neogi, Natasha A.

    2017-01-01

    This guidebook provides an overarching summary of existing policies, activities, and guiding principles for scientific and research integrity with which NASA's workforce and affiliates must conform. This document addresses NASA's obligations as both a research institution and as a funder of research, NASA's use of federal advisory committees, NASA's public communication of research results, and professional development of NASA's workforce. This guidebook is intended to provide a single resource for NASA researchers, NASA research program administrators and project managers, external entities who do or might receive funding from NASA for research or technical projects, evaluators of NASA research proposals, NASA advisory committee members, NASA communications specialists, and members of the general public so that they can understand NASA's commitment to and expectations for scientific and integrity across the agency.

  11. Planetary Atmosphere and Surfaces Chamber (PASC: A Platform to Address Various Challenges in Astrobiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eva Mateo-Marti

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available The study of planetary environments of astrobiological interest has become a major challenge. Because of the obvious technical and economical limitations on in situ planetary exploration, laboratory simulations are one of the most feasible research options to make advances both in planetary science and in developing a consistent description of the origin of life. With this objective in mind, we applied vacuum technology to the design of versatile vacuum chambers devoted to the simulation of planetary atmospheres’ conditions. These vacuum chambers are able to simulate atmospheres and surface temperatures representative of the majority of planetary objects, and they are especially appropriate for studying the physical, chemical and biological changes induced in a particular sample by in situ irradiation or physical parameters in a controlled environment. Vacuum chambers are a promising potential tool in several scientific and technological fields, such as engineering, chemistry, geology and biology. They also offer the possibility of discriminating between the effects of individual physical parameters and selected combinations thereof. The implementation of our vacuum chambers in combination with analytical techniques was specifically developed to make feasible the in situ physico-chemical characterization of samples. Many wide-ranging applications in astrobiology are detailed herein to provide an understanding of the potential and flexibility of these experimental systems. Instruments and engineering technology for space applications could take advantage of our environment-simulation chambers for sensor calibration. Our systems also provide the opportunity to gain a greater understanding of the chemical reactivity of molecules on surfaces under different environments, thereby leading to a greater understanding of interface processes in prebiotic chemical reactions and facilitating studies of UV photostability and photochemistry on surfaces

  12. Science Applications of a Multispectral Microscopic Imager for the Astrobiological Exploration of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farmer, Jack D.; Sellar, R. Glenn; Swayze, Gregg A.; Blaney, Diana L.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Future astrobiological missions to Mars are likely to emphasize the use of rovers with in situ petrologic capabilities for selecting the best samples at a site for in situ analysis with onboard lab instruments or for caching for potential return to Earth. Such observations are central to an understanding of the potential for past habitable conditions at a site and for identifying samples most likely to harbor fossil biosignatures. The Multispectral Microscopic Imager (MMI) provides multispectral reflectance images of geological samples at the microscale, where each image pixel is composed of a visible/shortwave infrared spectrum ranging from 0.46 to 1.73 μm. This spectral range enables the discrimination of a wide variety of rock-forming minerals, especially Fe-bearing phases, and the detection of hydrated minerals. The MMI advances beyond the capabilities of current microimagers on Mars by extending the spectral range into the infrared and increasing the number of spectral bands. The design employs multispectral light-emitting diodes and an uncooled indium gallium arsenide focal plane array to achieve a very low mass and high reliability. To better understand and demonstrate the capabilities of the MMI for future surface missions to Mars, we analyzed samples from Mars-relevant analog environments with the MMI. Results indicate that the MMI images faithfully resolve the fine-scale microtextural features of samples and provide important information to help constrain mineral composition. The use of spectral endmember mapping reveals the distribution of Fe-bearing minerals (including silicates and oxides) with high fidelity, along with the presence of hydrated minerals. MMI-based petrogenetic interpretations compare favorably with laboratory-based analyses, revealing the value of the MMI for future in situ rover-mediated astrobiological exploration of Mars. Key Words: Mars—Microscopic imager—Multispectral imaging

  13. An Astrobiological Experiment to Explore the Habitability of Tidally Locked M-Dwarf Planets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angerhausen, Daniel; Sapers, Haley; Simoncini, Eugenio; Lutz, Stefanie; Alexandre, Marcelo da Rosa; Galante, Douglas

    2014-04-01

    We present a summary of a three-year academic research proposal drafted during the Sao Paulo Advanced School of Astrobiology (SPASA) to prepare for upcoming observations of tidally locked planets orbiting M-dwarf stars. The primary experimental goal of the suggested research is to expose extremophiles from analogue environments to a modified space simulation chamber reproducing the environmental parameters of a tidally locked planet in the habitable zone of a late-type star. Here we focus on a description of the astronomical analysis used to define the parameters for this climate simulation.

  14. Geology of McLaughlin Crater, Mars: A Unique Lacustrine Setting with Implications for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michalski, J. R.; Niles, P. B.; Rogers, A. D.; Johnson, S. S.; Ashley, J. W.; Golombek, M. P.

    2016-01-01

    McLaughlin crater is a 92-kmdiameter Martian impact crater that contained an ancient carbonate- and clay mineral-bearing lake in the Late Noachian. Detailed analysis of the geology within this crater reveals a complex history with important implications for astrobiology [1]. The basin contains evidence for, among other deposits, hydrothermally altered rocks, delta deposits, deep water (>400 m) sediments, and potentially turbidites. The geology of this basin stands in stark contrast to that of some ancient basins that contain evidence for transient aqueous processes and airfall sediments (e.g. Gale Crater [2-3]).

  15. Micro-XRF : Elemental Analysis for In Situ Geology and Astrobiology Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allwood, Abigail; Hodyss, Robert; Wade, Lawrence

    2012-01-01

    The ability to make close-up measurements of rock chemistry is one of the most fundamental tools for astrobiological exploration of Mars and other rocky bodies of the solar system. When conducting surface-based exploration, lithochemical measurements provide critical data that enable interpretation of the local geology, which in turn is vital for determining habitability and searching for evidence of life. The value of lithochemical measurements for geological interpretations has been repeatedly demonstrated with virtually every landed Mars mission over the past four decades.

  16. Lunar Radio Telescopes: A Staged Approach for Lunar Science, Heliophysics, Astrobiology, Cosmology, and Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lazio, Joseph; Bowman, Judd D.; Burns, Jack O.; Farrell, W. M.; Jones, D. L.; Kasper, J. C.; MacDowall, R. J.; Stewart, K. P.; Weiler, K.

    2012-01-01

    Observations with radio telescopes address key problems in cosmology, astrobiology, heliophysics, and planetary science including the first light in the Universe (Cosmic Dawn), magnetic fields of extrasolar planets, particle acceleration mechanisms, and the lunar ionosphere. The Moon is a unique science platform because it allows access to radio frequencies that do not penetrate the Earth's ionosphere and because its far side is shielded from intense terrestrial emissions. The instrument packages and infrastructure needed for radio telescopes can be transported and deployed as part of Exploration activities, and the resulting science measurements may inform Exploration (e.g., measurements of lunar surface charging). An illustrative roadmap for the staged deployment of lunar radio telescopes

  17. The NASA Astrophysics Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zebulum, Ricardo S.

    2011-01-01

    NASA's scientists are enjoying unprecedented access to astronomy data from space, both from missions launched and operated only by NASA, as well as missions led by other space agencies to which NASA contributed instruments or technology. This paper describes the NASA astrophysics program for the next decade, including NASA's response to the ASTRO2010 Decadal Survey.

  18. Astrobiological neurosystems rise and fall of intelligent life forms in the universe

    CERN Document Server

    Cranford, Jerry L

    2015-01-01

    This book explains why scientists believe that life may be more common in the Universe than previously considered possible. It presents the tools and strategies astronomers and astrobiologists are using in their formal search for habitable exoplanets as well as more advanced forms of life in other parts of our galaxy. The author then summarizes what is currently known about how and where organic molecules critical to our form of carbon-based life are manufactured. The core of the book explains (and presents educated guesses) how nervous systems evolved on Earth, how they work, and how they might work on other worlds. Combining his knowledge of neuroscience, computers, and astrobiology the author jumps into the discussion whether biological nervous systems are just the first step in the rise of intelligence in the Universe. The book ends with a description from both the psychologist’s and the neuroscientist’s viewpoints, exactly what it is about the fields of astrobiology and astronomy that “boggles...

  19. From Extremophiles to Star Trek, The Use of Synthetic Biology in Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rothschild, Lynn J.; Fujishima, Kosuke; Lima, Ivan Paulino; Gentry, Diana; Phan, Samson; Navarette, Jesica; Palmer, Jesse; Burnier, Andre

    2012-01-01

    Synthetic biology – the design and construction of new biological parts and systems and the redesign of existing ones for useful purposes – has the potential to transform fields from pharmaceuticals to fuels. Our lab has focused on the potential of synthetic biology to revolutionize all three major parts of astrobiology: Where do we come from? Where are we going? and Are we alone? For the first and third, synthetic biology is allowing us to answer whether the evolutionary narrative that has played out on planet earth is likely to have been unique or universal. For example, in our lab we are re-evolving biotic functions using only the most thermodynamically stable amino acids in order to understand potential capabilities of an early organism with a limited repertoire of amino acids. In the future synthetic biology will play an increasing role in human activities both on earth, in fields as diverse as bio-mining, human health and the industrial production of novel bio-composites. Beyond earth, we will rely increasingly on biologically-provided life support, as we have throughout our evolutionary history. In order to do this, the field will build on two of the great contributions of astrobiology: studies of the origin of life and life in extreme environments.

  20. The Aouda.X space suit simulator and its applications to astrobiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Groemer, Gernot E; Hauth, Stefan; Luger, Ulrich; Bickert, Klaus; Sattler, Birgit; Hauth, Eva; Föger, Daniel; Schildhammer, Daniel; Agerer, Christian; Ragonig, Christoph; Sams, Sebastian; Kaineder, Felix; Knoflach, Martin

    2012-02-01

    We have developed the space suit simulator Aouda.X, which is capable of reproducing the physical and sensory limitations a flight-worthy suit would have on Mars. Based upon a Hard-Upper-Torso design, it has an advanced human-machine interface and a sensory network connected to an On-Board Data Handling system to increase the situational awareness in the field. Although the suit simulator is not pressurized, the physical forces that lead to a reduced working envelope and physical performance are reproduced with a calibrated exoskeleton. This allows us to simulate various pressure regimes from 0.3-1 bar. Aouda.X has been tested in several laboratory and field settings, including sterile sampling at 2800 m altitude inside a glacial ice cave and a cryochamber at -110°C, and subsurface tests in connection with geophysical instrumentation relevant to astrobiology, including ground-penetrating radar, geoacoustics, and drilling. The communication subsystem allows for a direct interaction with remote science teams via telemetry from a mission control center. Aouda.X as such is a versatile experimental platform for studying Mars exploration activities in a high-fidelity Mars analog environment with a focus on astrobiology and operations research that has been optimized to reduce the amount of biological cross contamination. We report on the performance envelope of the Aouda.X system and its operational limitations.

  1. The Astrobiology of the Subsurface: Caves and Rock Fracture Habitats on Earth, Mars and Beyond

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boston, Penelope J.

    2017-01-01

    The Astrobiology of the Subsurface: Exploring Cave Habitats on Earth, Mars and Beyond. We are using the spectacular underground landscapes of Earth caves as models for the subsurfaces of other planets. Caves have been detected on the Moon and Mars and are strongly suspected for other bodies in the Solar System including some of the ice covered Ocean Worlds that orbit gas giant planets. The caves we explore and study include many extreme conditions of relevance to planetary astrobiology exploration including high and low temperatures, gas atmospheres poisonous to humans but where exotic microbes can fluorish, highly acidic or salty fluids, heavy metals, and high background radiation levels. Some cave microorganisms eat their way through bedrock, some live in battery acid conditions, some produce unusual biominerals and rare cave formations, and many produce compounds of potential pharmaceutical and industrial significance. We study these unique lifeforms and the physical and chemical biosignatures that they leave behind. Such traces can be used to provide a Field Guide to Unknown Organisms for developing life detection space missions.

  2. EXPOSE-E: an ESA astrobiology mission 1.5 years in space.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rabbow, Elke; Rettberg, Petra; Barczyk, Simon; Bohmeier, Maria; Parpart, André; Panitz, Corinna; Horneck, Gerda; von Heise-Rotenburg, Ralf; Hoppenbrouwers, Tom; Willnecker, Rainer; Baglioni, Pietro; Demets, René; Dettmann, Jan; Reitz, Guenther

    2012-05-01

    The multi-user facility EXPOSE-E was designed by the European Space Agency to enable astrobiology research in space (low-Earth orbit). On 7 February 2008, EXPOSE-E was carried to the International Space Station (ISS) on the European Technology Exposure Facility (EuTEF) platform in the cargo bay of Space Shuttle STS-122 Atlantis. The facility was installed at the starboard cone of the Columbus module by extravehicular activity, where it remained in space for 1.5 years. EXPOSE-E was returned to Earth with STS-128 Discovery on 12 September 2009 for subsequent sample analysis. EXPOSE-E provided accommodation in three exposure trays for a variety of astrobiological test samples that were exposed to selected space conditions: either to space vacuum, solar electromagnetic radiation at >110 nm and cosmic radiation (trays 1 and 3) or to simulated martian surface conditions (tray 2). Data on UV radiation, cosmic radiation, and temperature were measured every 10 s and downlinked by telemetry. A parallel mission ground reference (MGR) experiment was performed on ground with a parallel set of hardware and samples under simulated space conditions. EXPOSE-E performed a successful 1.5-year mission in space.

  3. NASA Airborne Astronomy Ambassadors (AAA) Professional Development and NASA Connections

    Science.gov (United States)

    Backman, D. E.; Clark, C.; Harman, P. K.

    2017-12-01

    NASA's Airborne Astronomy Ambassadors (AAA) program is a three-part professional development (PD) experience for high school physics, astronomy, and earth science teachers. AAA PD consists of: (1) blended learning via webinars, asynchronous content learning, and in-person workshops, (2) a STEM immersion experience at NASA Armstrong's B703 science research aircraft facility in Palmdale, California, and (3) ongoing opportunities for connection with NASA astrophysics and planetary science Subject Matter Experts (SMEs). AAA implementation in 2016-18 involves partnerships between the SETI Institute and seven school districts in northern and southern California. AAAs in the current cohort were selected by the school districts based on criteria developed by AAA program staff working with WestEd evaluation consultants. The selected teachers were then randomly assigned by WestEd to a Group A or B to support controlled testing of student learning. Group A completed their PD during January - August 2017, then participated in NASA SOFIA science flights during fall 2017. Group B will act as a control during the 2017-18 school year, then will complete their professional development and SOFIA flights during 2018. A two-week AAA electromagnetic spectrum and multi-wavelength astronomy curriculum aligned with the Science Framework for California Public Schools and Next Generation Science Standards was developed by program staff for classroom delivery. The curriculum (as well as the AAA's pre-flight PD) capitalizes on NASA content by using "science snapshot" case studies regarding astronomy research conducted by SOFIA. AAAs also interact with NASA SMEs during flight weeks and will translate that interaction into classroom content. The AAA program will make controlled measurements of student gains in standards-based learning plus changes in student attitudes towards STEM, and observe & record the AAAs' implementation of curricular changes. Funded by NASA: NNX16AC51

  4. Astrobiology outreach and the nature of science: the role of creativity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fergusson, Jennifer; Oliver, Carol; Walter, Malcolm R

    2012-12-01

    There is concern in many developed countries that school students are turning away from science. However, students may be choosing not to study science and dismissing the possibility of a scientific career because, in the junior secondary years, they gain a false view of science and the work of scientists. There is a disparity between science as it is portrayed at school and science as it is practiced. This paper describes a study to explore whether engaging in science through astrobiology outreach activities may improve students' understanding of the nature and processes of science, and how this may influence their interest in a career in science. The results suggest that the students attending these Mars research-related outreach activities are more interested in science than the average student but are lacking in understanding of aspects of the nature of science. A significant difference was detected between pre- and posttest understandings of some concepts of the nature of science.

  5. Assessing the Ecophysiology of Methanogens in the Context of Recent Astrobiological and Planetological Studies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruth-Sophie Taubner

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Among all known microbes capable of thriving under extreme and, therefore, potentially extraterrestrial environmental conditions, methanogens from the domain Archaea are intriguing organisms. This is due to their broad metabolic versatility, enormous diversity, and ability to grow under extreme environmental conditions. Several studies revealed that growth conditions of methanogens are compatible with environmental conditions on extraterrestrial bodies throughout the Solar System. Hence, life in the Solar System might not be limited to the classical habitable zone. In this contribution we assess the main ecophysiological characteristics of methanogens and compare these to the environmental conditions of putative habitats in the Solar System, in particular Mars and icy moons. Eventually, we give an outlook on the feasibility and the necessity of future astrobiological studies concerning methanogens.

  6. The Formation of Organic Compounds of Astrobiological Interest by the Irradiation Processing of Astrophysical Ices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandford, Scott A.

    2015-01-01

    Many environments in space contain very low temperature mixed molecular ices that are exposed to ionizing radiation in the form of cosmic rays and high-energy photons. While traditional chemistry would not be expected to occur at the temperatures typical of these ices (T compounds. Many of these new products are of direct interest to astrobiology. For example, the irradiation of mixed molecular ices has been shown to produce amino acids, amphiphiles, quinones, sugars, heterocyclic compounds, and nucleobases, all molecular building blocks used by terrestrial life. Insofar as the presence of these materials plays a role in the origin of life on planets, this has profound implications for the potential abundance of life in the universe since these experiments simulate universal conditions that are expected to be found wherever new stars and planets form.

  7. The Astrobiology of the Subsurface: Exploring Cave Habitats on Earth, Mars and Beyond

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boston, Penelope Jane

    2016-01-01

    We are using the spectacular underground landscapes of Earth caves as models for the subsurfaces of other planets. Caves have been detected on the Moon and Mars and are strongly suspected for other bodies in the Solar System including some of the ice covered Ocean Worlds that orbit gas giant planets. The caves we explore and study include many extreme conditions of relevance to planetary astrobiology exploration including high and low temperatures, gas atmospheres poisonous to humans but where exotic microbes can flourish, highly acidic or salty fluids, heavy metals, and high background radiation levels. Some cave microorganisms eat their way through bedrock, some live in battery acid conditions, some produce unusual biominerals and rare cave formations, and many produce compounds of potential pharmaceutical and industrial significance. We study these unique lifeforms and the physical and chemical biosignatures that they leave behind. Such traces can be used to provide a "Field Guide to Unknown Organisms" for developing life detection space missions.

  8. Tumbleweed: Wind-propelled Surficial Measurements for Astrobiology and Planetary Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuhlman, K. R.; Behar, A. E.; Jones, J. A.; Carsey, F.; Coleman, M.; Bearman, G.; Buehler, M.; Boston, P. J.; McKay, C. P.; Rothschild, L.

    2004-01-01

    Tumbleweed is a wind-propelled long-range vehicle based on well-developed and tested technology, instrumented to perform surveys Mars analog environments for habitability and suitable for a variety of missions on Mars. Tumbleweeds are light-weight and relatively inexpensive, making it very attractive for multiple deployments or piggy-backing on a larger mission. Tumbleweeds with rigid structures are also being developed for similar applications. Modeling and testing have shown that a 6 meter diameter Tumbleweed is capable of climbing 25 hills, traveling over 1 meter diameter boulders, and ranging over a thousand kilometers. Tumbleweeds have a potential payload capability of about 10 kilograms with approximately 10-20 Watts of power. Stopping for science investigations can also be accomplished using partial deflation or other braking mechanisms. Surveys for Astrobiology and other applications of tumbleweeds are shown.

  9. Pulsed neutron generator system for astrobiological and geochemical exploration of planetary bodies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Akkurt, Hatice; Groves, Joel L.; Trombka, Jacob; Starr, Richard; Evans, Larry; Floyd, Samuel; Hoover, Richard; Lim, Lucy; McClanahan, Timothy; James, Ralph; McCoy, Timothy; Schweitzer, Jeffrey

    2005-01-01

    A pulsed neutron/gamma-ray detection system for use on rovers to survey the elemental concentrations of Martian and Lunar surface and subsurface materials is evaluated. A robotic survey system combining a pulsed neutron generator (PNG) and detectors (gamma ray and neutron) can measure the major constituents to a depth of about 30 cm. Scanning mode measurements can give the major elemental concentrations while the rover is moving; analyzing mode measurements can give a detailed elemental analysis of the adjacent material when the rover is stationary. A detailed map of the subsurface elemental concentrations will provide invaluable information relevant to some of the most fundamental astrobiological questions including the presence of water, biogenic activity, life habitability and deposition processes

  10. The Formation of Complex Organic Compounds in Astrophysical Ices and their Implications for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandford, Scott A.

    2015-01-01

    Ices in astrophysical environments are generally dominated by very simple molecules like H2O, CH3OH, CH4, NH3, CO, CO2, etc, although they likely contain PAHs as well. These molecules, particularly H2O, are of direct interest to astrobiology in-and-of themselves since they represent some of the main carriers of the biogenic elements C, H, O, and N. In addition, these compounds are present in the dense interstellar clouds in which new stars and planetary systems are formed and may play a large role in the delivery of volatiles and organics to the surfaces of new planets. However, these molecules are all far simpler than the more complex organic compounds found in living systems.

  11. The Argyre Region as a Prime Target for in situ Astrobiological Exploration of Mars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fairén, Alberto G; Dohm, James M; Rodríguez, J Alexis P; Uceda, Esther R; Kargel, Jeffrey; Soare, Richard; Cleaves, H James; Oehler, Dorothy; Schulze-Makuch, Dirk; Essefi, Elhoucine; Banks, Maria E; Komatsu, Goro; Fink, Wolfgang; Robbins, Stuart; Yan, Jianguo; Miyamoto, Hideaki; Maruyama, Shigenori; Baker, Victor R

    2016-02-01

    At the time before ∼3.5 Ga that life originated and began to spread on Earth, Mars was a wetter and more geologically dynamic planet than it is today. The Argyre basin, in the southern cratered highlands of Mars, formed from a giant impact at ∼3.93 Ga, which generated an enormous basin approximately 1800 km in diameter. The early post-impact environment of the Argyre basin possibly contained many of the ingredients that are thought to be necessary for life: abundant and long-lived liquid water, biogenic elements, and energy sources, all of which would have supported a regional environment favorable for the origin and the persistence of life. We discuss the astrobiological significance of some landscape features and terrain types in the Argyre region that are promising and accessible sites for astrobiological exploration. These include (i) deposits related to the hydrothermal activity associated with the Argyre impact event, subsequent impacts, and those associated with the migration of heated water along Argyre-induced basement structures; (ii) constructs along the floor of the basin that could mark venting of volatiles, possibly related to the development of mud volcanoes; (iii) features interpreted as ice-cored mounds (open-system pingos), whose origin and development could be the result of deeply seated groundwater upwelling to the surface; (iv) sedimentary deposits related to the formation of glaciers along the basin's margins, such as evidenced by the ridges interpreted to be eskers on the basin floor; (v) sedimentary deposits related to the formation of lakes in both the primary Argyre basin and other smaller impact-derived basins along the margin, including those in the highly degraded rim materials; and (vi) crater-wall gullies, whose morphology points to a structural origin and discharge of (wet) flows.

  12. Science applications of a multispectral microscopic imager for the astrobiological exploration of Mars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Núñez, Jorge I; Farmer, Jack D; Sellar, R Glenn; Swayze, Gregg A; Blaney, Diana L

    2014-02-01

    Future astrobiological missions to Mars are likely to emphasize the use of rovers with in situ petrologic capabilities for selecting the best samples at a site for in situ analysis with onboard lab instruments or for caching for potential return to Earth. Such observations are central to an understanding of the potential for past habitable conditions at a site and for identifying samples most likely to harbor fossil biosignatures. The Multispectral Microscopic Imager (MMI) provides multispectral reflectance images of geological samples at the microscale, where each image pixel is composed of a visible/shortwave infrared spectrum ranging from 0.46 to 1.73 μm. This spectral range enables the discrimination of a wide variety of rock-forming minerals, especially Fe-bearing phases, and the detection of hydrated minerals. The MMI advances beyond the capabilities of current microimagers on Mars by extending the spectral range into the infrared and increasing the number of spectral bands. The design employs multispectral light-emitting diodes and an uncooled indium gallium arsenide focal plane array to achieve a very low mass and high reliability. To better understand and demonstrate the capabilities of the MMI for future surface missions to Mars, we analyzed samples from Mars-relevant analog environments with the MMI. Results indicate that the MMI images faithfully resolve the fine-scale microtextural features of samples and provide important information to help constrain mineral composition. The use of spectral endmember mapping reveals the distribution of Fe-bearing minerals (including silicates and oxides) with high fidelity, along with the presence of hydrated minerals. MMI-based petrogenetic interpretations compare favorably with laboratory-based analyses, revealing the value of the MMI for future in situ rover-mediated astrobiological exploration of Mars. Mars-Microscopic imager-Multispectral imaging-Spectroscopy-Habitability-Arm instrument.

  13. Science applications of a multispectral microscopic imager for the astrobiological exploration of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nunez, Jorge; Farmer, Jack; Sellar, R. Glenn; Swayze, Gregg A.; Blaney, Diana L.

    2014-01-01

    Future astrobiological missions to Mars are likely to emphasize the use of rovers with in situ petrologic capabilities for selecting the best samples at a site for in situ analysis with onboard lab instruments or for caching for potential return to Earth. Such observations are central to an understanding of the potential for past habitable conditions at a site and for identifying samples most likely to harbor fossil biosignatures. The Multispectral Microscopic Imager (MMI) provides multispectral reflectance images of geological samples at the microscale, where each image pixel is composed of a visible/shortwave infrared spectrum ranging from 0.46 to 1.73 μm. This spectral range enables the discrimination of a wide variety of rock-forming minerals, especially Fe-bearing phases, and the detection of hydrated minerals. The MMI advances beyond the capabilities of current microimagers on Mars by extending the spectral range into the infrared and increasing the number of spectral bands. The design employs multispectral light-emitting diodes and an uncooled indium gallium arsenide focal plane array to achieve a very low mass and high reliability. To better understand and demonstrate the capabilities of the MMI for future surface missions to Mars, we analyzed samples from Mars-relevant analog environments with the MMI. Results indicate that the MMI images faithfully resolve the fine-scale microtextural features of samples and provide important information to help constrain mineral composition. The use of spectral endmember mapping reveals the distribution of Fe-bearing minerals (including silicates and oxides) with high fidelity, along with the presence of hydrated minerals. MMI-based petrogenetic interpretations compare favorably with laboratory-based analyses, revealing the value of the MMI for future in situ rover-mediated astrobiological exploration of Mars.

  14. NASA Biological Specimen Repository

    Science.gov (United States)

    McMonigal, K. A.; Pietrzyk, R. A.; Sams, C. F.; Johnson, M. A.

    2010-01-01

    The NASA Biological Specimen Repository (NBSR) was established in 2006 to collect, process, preserve and distribute spaceflight-related biological specimens from long duration ISS astronauts. This repository provides unique opportunities to study longitudinal changes in human physiology spanning may missions. The NBSR collects blood and urine samples from all participating ISS crewmembers who have provided informed consent. These biological samples are collected once before flight, during flight scheduled on flight days 15, 30, 60, 120 and within 2 weeks of landing. Postflight sessions are conducted 3 and 30 days after landing. The number of in-flight sessions is dependent on the duration of the mission. Specimens are maintained under optimal storage conditions in a manner that will maximize their integrity and viability for future research The repository operates under the authority of the NASA/JSC Committee for the Protection of Human Subjects to support scientific discovery that contributes to our fundamental knowledge in the area of human physiological changes and adaptation to a microgravity environment. The NBSR will institute guidelines for the solicitation, review and sample distribution process through establishment of the NBSR Advisory Board. The Advisory Board will be composed of representatives of all participating space agencies to evaluate each request from investigators for use of the samples. This process will be consistent with ethical principles, protection of crewmember confidentiality, prevailing laws and regulations, intellectual property policies, and consent form language. Operations supporting the NBSR are scheduled to continue until the end of U.S. presence on the ISS. Sample distribution is proposed to begin with selections on investigations beginning in 2017. The availability of the NBSR will contribute to the body of knowledge about the diverse factors of spaceflight on human physiology.

  15. Autonomous Warplanes: NASA Rovers Lead the Way

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-04-01

    Warplanes NASA Rovers Lead the Way Michael R. Schroer Major, Air National Guard Wright Flyer No. 54 Air University Press Air Force Research Institute...between most airports across the continent proved an excellent further education in aviation. Piloting a business jet on a weeklong, 11- hop trek across...Research con- ducted by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration ( NASA ) offers useful lessons for the development of future military RPAs

  16. Chemical Engineering at NASA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collins, Jacob

    2008-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation is a review of the career paths for chemicals engineer at NASA (specifically NASA Johnson Space Center.) The author uses his personal experience and history as an example of the possible career options.

  17. NASA strategic plan

    Science.gov (United States)

    1994-01-01

    The NASA Strategic Plan is a living document. It provides far-reaching goals and objectives to create stability for NASA's efforts. The Plan presents NASA's top-level strategy: it articulates what NASA does and for whom; it differentiates between ends and means; it states where NASA is going and what NASA intends to do to get there. This Plan is not a budget document, nor does it present priorities for current or future programs. Rather, it establishes a framework for shaping NASA's activities and developing a balanced set of priorities across the Agency. Such priorities will then be reflected in the NASA budget. The document includes vision, mission, and goals; external environment; conceptual framework; strategic enterprises (Mission to Planet Earth, aeronautics, human exploration and development of space, scientific research, space technology, and synergy); strategic functions (transportation to space, space communications, human resources, and physical resources); values and operating principles; implementing strategy; and senior management team concurrence.

  18. NASA Space Radiation Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The NASA Space Radiation Laboratory (NSRL) at Brookhaven National Laboratory is a NASA funded facility, delivering heavy ion beams to a target area where scientists...

  19. NASA systems engineering handbook

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shishko, Robert; Aster, Robert; Chamberlain, Robert G.; McDuffee, Patrick; Pieniazek, Les; Rowell, Tom; Bain, Beth; Cox, Renee I.; Mooz, Harold; Polaski, Lou

    1995-06-01

    This handbook brings the fundamental concepts and techniques of systems engineering to NASA personnel in a way that recognizes the nature of NASA systems and environment. It is intended to accompany formal NASA training courses on systems engineering and project management when appropriate, and is designed to be a top-level overview. The concepts were drawn from NASA field center handbooks, NMI's/NHB's, the work of the NASA-wide Systems Engineering Working Group and the Systems Engineering Process Improvement Task team, several non-NASA textbooks and guides, and material from independent systems engineering courses taught to NASA personnel. Five core chapters cover systems engineering fundamentals, the NASA Project Cycle, management issues in systems engineering, systems analysis and modeling, and specialty engineering integration. It is not intended as a directive.

  20. Continuous Risk Management at NASA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammer, Theodore F.; Rosenberg, Linda

    1999-01-01

    NPG 7120.5A, "NASA Program and Project Management Processes and Requirements" enacted in April, 1998, requires that "The program or project manager shall apply risk management principles..." The Software Assurance Technology Center (SATC) at NASA GSFC has been tasked with the responsibility for developing and teaching a systems level course for risk management that provides information on how to comply with this edict. The course was developed in conjunction with the Software Engineering Institute at Carnegie Mellon University, then tailored to the NASA systems community. This presentation will briefly discuss the six functions for risk management: (1) Identify the risks in a specific format; (2) Analyze the risk probability, impact/severity, and timeframe; (3) Plan the approach; (4) Track the risk through data compilation and analysis; (5) Control and monitor the risk; (6) Communicate and document the process and decisions. This risk management structure of functions has been taught to projects at all NASA Centers and is being successfully implemented on many projects. This presentation will give project managers the information they need to understand if risk management is to be effectively implemented on their projects at a cost they can afford.

  1. NASA Earth Science Education Collaborative

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwerin, T. G.; Callery, S.; Chambers, L. H.; Riebeek Kohl, H.; Taylor, J.; Martin, A. M.; Ferrell, T.

    2016-12-01

    The NASA Earth Science Education Collaborative (NESEC) is led by the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies with partners at three NASA Earth science Centers: Goddard Space Flight Center, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and Langley Research Center. This cross-organization team enables the project to draw from the diverse skills, strengths, and expertise of each partner to develop fresh and innovative approaches for building pathways between NASA's Earth-related STEM assets to large, diverse audiences in order to enhance STEM teaching, learning and opportunities for learners throughout their lifetimes. These STEM assets include subject matter experts (scientists, engineers, and education specialists), science and engineering content, and authentic participatory and experiential opportunities. Specific project activities include authentic STEM experiences through NASA Earth science themed field campaigns and citizen science as part of international GLOBE program (for elementary and secondary school audiences) and GLOBE Observer (non-school audiences of all ages); direct connections to learners through innovative collaborations with partners like Odyssey of the Mind, an international creative problem-solving and design competition; and organizing thematic core content and strategically working with external partners and collaborators to adapt and disseminate core content to support the needs of education audiences (e.g., libraries and maker spaces, student research projects, etc.). A scaffolded evaluation is being conducted that 1) assesses processes and implementation, 2) answers formative evaluation questions in order to continuously improve the project; 3) monitors progress and 4) measures outcomes.

  2. Extremotolerance and resistance of lichens: comparative studies on five species used in astrobiological research II. Secondary lichen compounds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meessen, J; Sánchez, F J; Sadowsky, A; de la Torre, R; Ott, S; de Vera, J-P

    2013-12-01

    Lichens, which are symbioses of a fungus and one or two photoautotrophs, frequently tolerate extreme environmental conditions. This makes them valuable model systems in astrobiological research to fathom the limits and limitations of eukaryotic symbioses. Various studies demonstrated the high resistance of selected extremotolerant lichens towards extreme, non-terrestrial abiotic factors including space exposure, hypervelocity impact simulations as well as space and Martian parameter simulations. This study focusses on the diverse set of secondary lichen compounds (SLCs) that act as photo- and UVR-protective substances. Five lichen species used in present-day astrobiological research were compared: Buellia frigida, Circinaria gyrosa, Rhizocarpon geographicum, Xanthoria elegans, and Pleopsidium chlorophanum. Detailed investigation of secondary substances including photosynthetic pigments was performed for whole lichen thalli but also for axenically cultivated mycobionts and photobionts by methods of UV/VIS-spectrophotometry and two types of high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Additionally, a set of chemical tests is presented to confirm the formation of melanic compounds in lichen and mycobiont samples. All investigated lichens reveal various sets of SLCs, except C. gyrosa where only melanin was putatively identified. Such studies will help to assess the contribution of SLCs on lichen extremotolerance, to understand the adaptation of lichens to prevalent abiotic stressors of the respective habitat, and to form a basis for interpreting recent and future astrobiological experiments. As most of the identified SLCs demonstrated a high capacity in absorbing UVR, they may also explain the high resistance of lichens towards non-terrestrial UVR.

  3. Extremotolerance and Resistance of Lichens: Comparative Studies on Five Species Used in Astrobiological Research II. Secondary Lichen Compounds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meeßen, J.; Sánchez, F. J.; Sadowsky, A.; de la Torre, R.; Ott, S.; de Vera, J.-P.

    2013-12-01

    Lichens, which are symbioses of a fungus and one or two photoautotrophs, frequently tolerate extreme environmental conditions. This makes them valuable model systems in astrobiological research to fathom the limits and limitations of eukaryotic symbioses. Various studies demonstrated the high resistance of selected extremotolerant lichens towards extreme, non-terrestrial abiotic factors including space exposure, hypervelocity impact simulations as well as space and Martian parameter simulations. This study focusses on the diverse set of secondary lichen compounds (SLCs) that act as photo- and UVR-protective substances. Five lichen species used in present-day astrobiological research were compared: Buellia frigida, Circinaria gyrosa, Rhizocarpon geographicum, Xanthoria elegans, and Pleopsidium chlorophanum. Detailed investigation of secondary substances including photosynthetic pigments was performed for whole lichen thalli but also for axenically cultivated mycobionts and photobionts by methods of UV/VIS-spectrophotometry and two types of high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Additionally, a set of chemical tests is presented to confirm the formation of melanic compounds in lichen and mycobiont samples. All investigated lichens reveal various sets of SLCs, except C. gyrosa where only melanin was putatively identified. Such studies will help to assess the contribution of SLCs on lichen extremotolerance, to understand the adaptation of lichens to prevalent abiotic stressors of the respective habitat, and to form a basis for interpreting recent and future astrobiological experiments. As most of the identified SLCs demonstrated a high capacity in absorbing UVR, they may also explain the high resistance of lichens towards non-terrestrial UVR.

  4. Nitrogen Concentrations and Isotopic Compositions of Seafloor-Altered Terrestrial Basaltic Glass: Implications for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banerjee, N.R.; Izawa, M.R.M.; Kobayashi, K.; Lazzeri, K.; Ranieri, L.A.; Nakamura, E.

    2018-01-01

    Abstract Observed enrichments of N (and the δ15N of this N) in volcanic glasses altered on Earth's modern and ancient seafloor are relevant in considerations of modern global N subduction fluxes and ancient life on Earth, and similarly altered glasses on Mars and other extraterrestrial bodies could serve as valuable tracers of biogeochemical processes. Palagonitized glasses and whole-rock samples of volcanic rocks on the modern seafloor (ODP Site 1256D) contain 3–18 ppm N with δ15Nair values of up to +4.5‰. Variably altered glasses from Mesozoic ophiolites (Troodos, Cyprus; Stonyford volcanics, USA) contain 2–53 ppm N with δ15N of −6.3 to +7‰. All of the more altered glasses have N concentrations higher than those of fresh volcanic glass (for MORB, smectite, illite) in both the palagonitized cracks and the microtubules. These phyllosilicates (particularly illite), and possibly also zeolites, are the likely hosts for N in these glasses. Key Words: Nitrogen—Nitrogen isotope—Palagonite—Volcanic glass—Mars. Astrobiology 18, 330–342. PMID:29106312

  5. Resistance of Microorganisms to Extreme Environmental Conditions and Its Contribution to Astrobiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pabulo Henrique Rampelotto

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available In the last decades, substantial changes have occurred regarding what scientists consider the limits of habitable environmental conditions. For every extreme environmental condition investigated, a variety of microorganisms have shown that not only can they tolerate these conditions, but that they also often require these extreme conditions for survival. Microbes can return to life even after hundreds of millions of years. Furthermore, a variety of studies demonstrate that microorganisms can survive under extreme conditions, such as ultracentrifugation, hypervelocity, shock pressure, high temperature variations, vacuums, and different ultraviolet and ionizing radiation intensities, which simulate the conditions that microbes could experience during the ejection from one planet, the journey through space, as well as the impact in another planet. With these discoveries, our knowledge about the biosphere has grown and the putative boundaries of life have expanded. The present work examines the recent discoveries and the principal advances concerning the resistance of microorganisms to extreme environmental conditions, and analyzes its contributions to the development of the main themes of astrobiology: the origins of life, the search for extraterrestrial life, and the dispersion of life in the Universe.

  6. The importance of the Maillard-metal complexes and their silicates in astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liesch, Patrick J.; Kolb, Vera M.

    2007-09-01

    The Maillard reaction occurs when sugars and amino acids are mixed together in the solid state or in the aqueous solution. Since both amino acids and sugar-like compounds are found on meteorites, we hypothesized that they would also undergo the Maillard reaction. Our recent work supports this idea. We have shown previously that the water-insoluble Maillard products have substantial similarities with the insoluble organic materials from the meteorites. The Maillard organic materials are also part of the desert varnish on Earth, which is a dark, shiny, hard rock coating that contains iron and manganese and is glazed in silicate. Rocks that are similar in appearance to the desert varnish have been observed on the Martian surface. They may also contain the organic materials. We have undertaken study of the interactions between the Maillard products, iron and other metals, and silicates, to elucidate the role of the Maillard products in the chemistry of desert varnish and meteorites. Specifically, we have synthesized a series of the Maillard-metal complexes, and have tested their reactivity towards silicates. We have studied the properties of these Maillard-metal-silicate products by the IR spectroscopy. The astrobiological potential of the Maillard-metal complexes is assessed.

  7. A Statistical Approach to Illustrate the Challenge of Astrobiology for Public Outreach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frédéric Foucher

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available In this study, we attempt to illustrate the competition that constitutes the main challenge of astrobiology, namely the competition between the probability of extraterrestrial life and its detectability. To illustrate this fact, we propose a simple statistical approach based on our knowledge of the Universe and the Milky Way, the Solar System, and the evolution of life on Earth permitting us to obtain the order of magnitude of the distance between Earth and bodies inhabited by more or less evolved past or present life forms, and the consequences of this probability for the detection of associated biosignatures. We thus show that the probability of the existence of evolved extraterrestrial forms of life increases with distance from the Earth while, at the same time, the number of detectable biosignatures decreases due to technical and physical limitations. This approach allows us to easily explain to the general public why it is very improbable to detect a signal of extraterrestrial intelligence while it is justified to launch space probes dedicated to the search for microbial life in the Solar System.

  8. Reduced and oxidised scytonemin: theoretical protocol for Raman spectroscopic identification of potential key biomolecules for astrobiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varnali, Tereza; Edwards, Howell G M

    2014-01-03

    Scytonemin is an important UV-radiation protective biomolecule synthesised by extremophilic cyanobacteria in stressed terrestrial environments. Scytonemin and its reduced form have been both isolated experimentally and the Raman spectrum for scytonemin has been assigned and characterised experimentally both in extracts and in living extremophilic cyanobacterial colonies. Scytonemin is recognised as a key biomarker molecule for terrestrial organisms in stressed environments. We propose a new, theoretically plausible structure for oxidised scytonemin which has not been mentioned in the literature hitherto. DFT calculations for scytonemin, reduced scytonemin and the new structure modelled and proposed for oxidised scytonemin are reported along with their Raman spectroscopic data and λmax UV-absorption data obtained theoretically. Comparison of the vibrational spectroscopic assignments allows the three forms of scytonemin to be detected and identified and assist not only in the clarification of the major features in the experimentally observed Raman spectral data for the parent scytonemin but also support a protocol proposed for their analytical discrimination. The results of this study provide a basis for the search for molecules of this type in future astrobiological missions of exploration and the search for extinct and extant life terrestrially. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Internal NASA Study: NASAs Protoflight Research Initiative

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coan, Mary R.; Hirshorn, Steven R.; Moreland, Robert

    2015-01-01

    The NASA Protoflight Research Initiative is an internal NASA study conducted within the Office of the Chief Engineer to better understand the use of Protoflight within NASA. Extensive literature reviews and interviews with key NASA members with experience in both robotic and human spaceflight missions has resulted in three main conclusions and two observations. The first conclusion is that NASA's Protoflight method is not considered to be "prescriptive." The current policies and guidance allows each Program/Project to tailor the Protoflight approach to better meet their needs, goals and objectives. Second, Risk Management plays a key role in implementation of the Protoflight approach. Any deviations from full qualification will be based on the level of acceptable risk with guidance found in NPR 8705.4. Finally, over the past decade (2004 - 2014) only 6% of NASA's Protoflight missions and 6% of NASA's Full qualification missions experienced a publicly disclosed mission failure. In other words, the data indicates that the Protoflight approach, in and of it itself, does not increase the mission risk of in-flight failure. The first observation is that it would be beneficial to document the decision making process on the implementation and use of Protoflight. The second observation is that If a Project/Program chooses to use the Protoflight approach with relevant heritage, it is extremely important that the Program/Project Manager ensures that the current project's requirements falls within the heritage design, component, instrument and/or subsystem's requirements for both the planned and operational use, and that the documentation of the relevant heritage is comprehensive, sufficient and the decision well documented. To further benefit/inform this study, a recommendation to perform a deep dive into 30 missions with accessible data on their testing/verification methodology and decision process to research the differences between Protoflight and Full Qualification

  10. NASA Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization

    Science.gov (United States)

    2001-01-01

    The Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization (OSDBU) within NASA promotes the utilization of small, disadvantaged, and women-owned small businesses in compliance with Federal laws, regulations, and policies. We assist such firms in obtaining contracts and subcontracts with NASA and its prime contractors. The OSDBU also facilitates the participation of small businesses in NASA's technology transfer and commercialization activities. Our driving philosophy is to consider small businesses as our products. Our customers are the NASA Enterprises, Field Centers, Functional Staff Offices, major prime contractors, and other large institutions. We hone the skills of our products to make them marketable to our customers in the performance of NASA missions.

  11. Disseminating NASA-based science through NASA's Universe of Learning: Girls STEAM Ahead

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marcucci, E.; Meinke, B. K.; Smith, D. A.; Ryer, H.; Slivinski, C.; Kenney, J.; Arcand, K.; Cominsky, L.

    2017-12-01

    The Girls STEAM Ahead with NASA (GSAWN) initiative partners the NASA's Universe of Learning (UoL) resources with public libraries to provide NASA-themed activities for girls and their families. The program expands upon the legacy program, NASA Science4Girls and Their Families, in celebration of National Women's History Month. Program resources include hands-on activities for engaging girls, such as coding experiences and use of remote telescopes, complementary exhibits, and professional development for library partner staff. The science-institute-embedded partners in NASA's UoL are uniquely poised to foster collaboration between scientists with content expertise and educators with pedagogy expertise. The thematic topics related to NASA Astrophysics enable audiences to experience the full range of NASA scientific and technical disciplines and the different career skills each requires. For example, an activity may focus on understanding exoplanets, methods of their detection, and characteristics that can be determined remotely. The events focus on engaging underserved and underrepresented audiences in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) via use of research-based best practices, collaborations with libraries, partnerships with local and national organizations (e.g. National Girls Collaborative Project or NGCP), and remote engagement of audiences. NASA's UoL collaborated with another NASA STEM Activation partner, NASA@ My Library, to announce GSAWN to their extensive STAR_Net network of libraries. This partnership between NASA SMD-funded Science learning and literacy teams has included NASA@ My Library hosting a professional development webinar featuring a GSAWN activity, a newsletter and blog post about the program, and plans for future exhibit development. This presentation will provide an overview of the program's progress to engage girls and their families through the development and dissemination of NASA-based science programming.

  12. NASA's EOSDIS, Trust and Certification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramapriyan, H. K.

    2017-01-01

    NASA's Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS) has been in operation since August 1994, managing most of NASA's Earth science data from satellites, airborne sensors, filed campaigns and other activities. Having been designated by the Federal Government as a project responsible for production, archiving and distribution of these data through its Distributed Active Archive Centers (DAACs), the Earth Science Data and Information System Project (ESDIS) is responsible for EOSDIS, and is legally bound by the Office of Management and Budgets circular A-130, the Federal Records Act. It must follow the regulations of the National Institute of Standards and Technologies (NIST) and National Archive and Records Administration (NARA). It must also follow the NASA Procedural Requirement 7120.5 (NASA Space Flight Program and Project Management). All these ensure that the data centers managed by ESDIS are trustworthy from the point of view of efficient and effective operations as well as preservation of valuable data from NASA's missions. Additional factors contributing to this trust are an extensive set of internal and external reviews throughout the history of EOSDIS starting in the early 1990s. Many of these reviews have involved external groups of scientific and technological experts. Also, independent annual surveys of user satisfaction that measure and publish the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI), where EOSDIS has scored consistently high marks since 2004, provide an additional measure of trustworthiness. In addition, through an effort initiated in 2012 at the request of NASA HQ, the ESDIS Project and 10 of 12 DAACs have been certified by the International Council for Science (ICSU) World Data System (WDS) and are members of the ICSUWDS. This presentation addresses questions such as pros and cons of the certification process, key outcomes and next steps regarding certification. Recently, the ICSUWDS and Data Seal of Approval (DSA) organizations

  13. The NASA computer science research program plan

    Science.gov (United States)

    1983-01-01

    A taxonomy of computer science is included, one state of the art of each of the major computer science categories is summarized. A functional breakdown of NASA programs under Aeronautics R and D, space R and T, and institutional support is also included. These areas were assessed against the computer science categories. Concurrent processing, highly reliable computing, and information management are identified.

  14. Engineering Institute

    Science.gov (United States)

    Projects Past Projects Publications NSEC » Engineering Institute Engineering Institute Multidisciplinary engineering research that integrates advanced modeling and simulations, novel sensing systems and new home of Engineering Institute Contact Institute Director Charles Farrar (505) 665-0860 Email UCSD EI

  15. Backward Planetary Protection Issues and Possible Solutions for Icy Plume Sample Return Missions from Astrobiological Targets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yano, Hajime; McKay, Christopher P.; Anbar, Ariel; Tsou, Peter

    The recent report of possible water vapor plumes at Europa and Ceres, together with the well-known Enceladus plume containing water vapor, salt, ammonia, and organic molecules, suggests that sample return missions could evolve into a generic approach for outer Solar System exploration in the near future, especially for the benefit of astrobiology research. Sampling such plumes can be accomplished via fly-through mission designs, modeled after the successful Stardust mission to capture and return material from Comet Wild-2 and multiple, precise trajectory controls of the Cassini mission to fly through Enceladus’ plume. The proposed LIFE (Life Investigation For Enceladus) mission to Enceladus, which would sample organic molecules from the plume of that apparently habitable world, provides one example of the appealing scientific return of such missions. Beyond plumes, the upper atmosphere of Titan could also be sampled in this manner. The SCIM mission to Mars, also inspired by Stardust, would sample and return aerosol dust in the upper atmosphere of Mars and thus extends this concept even to other planetary bodies. Such missions share common design needs. In particular, they require large exposed sampler areas (or sampler arrays) that can be contained to the standards called for by international planetary protection protocols that COSPAR Planetary Protection Policy (PPP) recommends. Containment is also needed because these missions are driven by astrobiologically relevant science - including interest in organic molecules - which argues against heat sterilization that could destroy scientific value of samples. Sample containment is a daunting engineering challenge. Containment systems must be carefully designed to appropriate levels to satisfy the two top requirements: planetary protection policy and the preserving the scientific value of samples. Planning for Mars sample return tends to center on a hermetic seal specification (i.e., gas-tight against helium escape

  16. EXPOSE-R2: The Astrobiological ESA Mission on Board of the International Space Station

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elke Rabbow

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available On July 23, 2014, the Progress cargo spacecraft 56P was launched from Baikonur to the International Space Station (ISS, carrying EXPOSE-R2, the third ESA (European Space Agency EXPOSE facility, the second EXPOSE on the outside platform of the Russian Zvezda module, with four international astrobiological experiments into space. More than 600 biological samples of archaea, bacteria (as biofilms and in planktonic form, lichens, fungi, plant seeds, triops eggs, mosses and 150 samples of organic compounds were exposed to the harsh space environment and to parameters similar to those on the Mars surface. Radiation dosimeters distributed over the whole facility complemented the scientific payload. Three extravehicular activities later the chemical samples were returned to Earth on March 2, 2016, with Soyuz 44S, having spent 588 days in space. The biological samples arrived back later, on June 18, 2016, with 45S, after a total duration in space of 531 days. The exposure of the samples to Low Earth Orbit vacuum lasted for 531 days and was divided in two parts: protected against solar irradiation during the first 62 days, followed by exposure to solar radiation during the subsequent 469 days. In parallel to the space mission, a Mission Ground Reference (MGR experiment with a flight identical Hardware and a complete flight identical set of samples was performed at the premises of DLR (German Aerospace Center in Cologne by MUSC (Microgravity User Support Center, according to the mission data either downloaded from the ISS (temperature data, facility status, inner pressure status or provided by RedShift Design and Engineering BVBA, Belgium (calculated ultra violet radiation fluence data. In this paper, the EXPOSE-R2 facility, the experimental samples, mission parameters, environmental parameters, and the overall mission and MGR sequences are described, building the background for the research papers of the individual experiments, their analysis and results.

  17. The Lost City Hydrothermal Field: A Spectroscopic and Astrobiological Analogue for Nili Fossae, Mars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amador, Elena S; Bandfield, Joshua L; Brazelton, William J; Kelley, Deborah

    2017-11-01

    Low-temperature serpentinization is a critical process with respect to Earth's habitability and the Solar System. Exothermic serpentinization reactions commonly produce hydrogen as a direct by-product and typically produce short-chained organic compounds indirectly. Here, we present the spectral and mineralogical variability in rocks from the serpentine-driven Lost City Hydrothermal Field on Earth and the olivine-rich region of Nili Fossae on Mars. Near- and thermal-infrared spectral measurements were made from a suite of Lost City rocks at wavelengths similar to those for instruments collecting measurements of the martian surface. Results from Lost City show a spectrally distinguishable suite of Mg-rich serpentine, Ca carbonates, talc, and amphibole minerals. Aggregated detections of low-grade metamorphic minerals in rocks from Nili Fossae were mapped and yielded a previously undetected serpentine exposure in the region. Direct comparison of the two spectral suites indicates similar mineralogy at both Lost City and in the Noachian (4-3.7 Ga) bedrock of Nili Fossae, Mars. Based on mapping of these spectral phases, the implied mineralogical suite appears to be extensive across the region. These results suggest that serpentinization was once an active process, indicating that water and energy sources were available, as well as a means for prebiotic chemistry during a time period when life was first emerging on Earth. Although the mineralogical assemblages identified on Mars are unlikely to be directly analogous to rocks that underlie the Lost City Hydrothermal Field, related geochemical processes (and associated sources of biologically accessible energy) were once present in the subsurface, making Nili Fossae a compelling candidate for a once-habitable environment on Mars. Key Words: Mars-Habitability-Serpentinization-Analogue. Astrobiology 17, 1138-1160.

  18. The Mojave Desert: A Martian Analog Site for Future Astrobiology Themed Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salas, E.; Abbey, W.; Bhartia, R.; Beegle, L. W.

    2011-01-01

    Astrobiological interest in Mars is highlighted by evidence that Mars was once warm enough to have liquid water present on its surface long enough to create geologic formations that could only exist in the presense of extended fluvial periods. These periods existed at the same time life on Earth arose. If life began on Mars as well during this period, it is reasonable to assume it may have adapted to the subsurface as environments at the surface changed into the inhospitable state we find today. If the next series of Mars missions (Mars Science Laboratory, the ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter proposed for launch in 2016, and potential near surface sample return) fail to discover either extinct or extant life on Mars, a subsurface mission would be necessary to attempt to "close the book" on the existence of martian life. Mars is much colder and drier than Earth, with a very low pressure CO2 environment and no obvious habitats. Terrestrial regions with limited precipitation, and hence reduced active biota, are some of the best martian low to mid latitude analogs to be found on Earth, be they the Antarctic dry valleys, the Atacama or Mojave Deserts. The Mojave Desert/Death Valley region is considered a Mars analog site by the Terrestrial Analogs Panel of the NSF-sponsored decadal survey; a field guide was even developed and a workshop was held on its applicability as a Mars analog. This region has received a great deal of attention due to its accessibility and the variety of landforms and processes observed relevant to martian studies.

  19. Astrobiology in an Urban New York City High School: John Dewey High School's Space Science Academy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fried, B.; Dash, H. B.

    2010-04-01

    John Dewey High School's participation in NASA's MESDT and DLN projects and other partnerships provide opportunities for our diverse population, focusing particular attention to under-represented and under-served groups in the field of Space Science.

  20. NASA Technology Plan 1998

    Science.gov (United States)

    1998-01-01

    This NASA Strategic Plan describes an ambitious, exciting vision for the Agency across all its Strategic Enterprises that addresses a series of fundamental questions of science and research. This vision is so challenging that it literally depends on the success of an aggressive, cutting-edge advanced technology development program. The objective of this plan is to describe the NASA-wide technology program in a manner that provides not only the content of ongoing and planned activities, but also the rationale and justification for these activities in the context of NASA's future needs. The scope of this plan is Agencywide, and it includes technology investments to support all major space and aeronautics program areas, but particular emphasis is placed on longer term strategic technology efforts that will have broad impact across the spectrum of NASA activities and perhaps beyond. Our goal is to broaden the understanding of NASA technology programs and to encourage greater participation from outside the Agency. By relating technology goals to anticipated mission needs, we hope to stimulate additional innovative approaches to technology challenges and promote more cooperative programs with partners outside NASA who share common goals. We also believe that this will increase the transfer of NASA-sponsored technology into nonaerospace applications, resulting in an even greater return on the investment in NASA.

  1. Astronomía y Astrobiología con internet : recursos informáticos y material multimedia interactivo

    OpenAIRE

    Ruiz Rey, Francisco José

    2006-01-01

    El artículo de Francisco José Ruiz Rey presenta información sobre diversos recursos didácticos de Astronomía y Astrobiología disponibles en Internet. Previamente, el autor hace una reflexión sobre Internet como un elemento que favorece el aprendizaje significativo constructivo y que modifica el patrón de escuela tradicional que requiere la presencia física del profesor y de los alumnos. Partiendo de esta reflexión, Francisco José Ruiz ofrece una selección amplia de sitios Web comentados divid...

  2. NASA Airborne Science Program: NASA Stratospheric Platforms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curry, Robert E.

    2010-01-01

    The National Aeronautics and Space Administration conducts a wide variety of remote sensing projects using several unique aircraft platforms. These vehicles have been selected and modified to provide capabilities that are particularly important for geophysical research, in particular, routine access to very high altitudes, long range, long endurance, precise trajectory control, and the payload capacity to operate multiple, diverse instruments concurrently. While the NASA program has been in operation for over 30 years, new aircraft and technological advances that will expand the capabilities for airborne observation are continually being assessed and implemented. This presentation will review the current state of NASA's science platforms, recent improvements and new missions concepts as well as provide a survey of emerging technologies unmanned aerial vehicles for long duration observations (Global Hawk and Predator). Applications of information technology that allow more efficient use of flight time and the ability to rapidly reconfigure systems for different mission objectives are addressed.

  3. Institutional advantage

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Martin, Xavier

    Is there such a thing as institutional advantage—and what does it mean for the study of corporate competitive advantage? In this article, I develop the concept of institutional competitive advantage, as distinct from plain competitive advantage and from comparative institutional advantage. I first

  4. Evolutionary institutionalism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fürstenberg, Dr Kai

    Institutions are hard to define and hard to study. Long prominent in political science have been two theories: Rational Choice Institutionalism (RCI) and Historical Institutionalism (HI). Arising from the life sciences is now a third: Evolutionary Institutionalism (EI). Comparative strengths and weaknesses of these three theories warrant review, and the value-to-be-added by expanding the third beyond Darwinian evolutionary theory deserves consideration. Should evolutionary institutionalism expand to accommodate new understanding in ecology, such as might apply to the emergence of stability, and in genetics, such as might apply to political behavior? Core arguments are reviewed for each theory with more detailed exposition of the third, EI. Particular attention is paid to EI's gene-institution analogy; to variation, selection, and retention of institutional traits; to endogeneity and exogeneity; to agency and structure; and to ecosystem effects, institutional stability, and empirical limitations in behavioral genetics. RCI, HI, and EI are distinct but complementary. Institutional change, while amenable to rational-choice analysis and, retrospectively, to criticaljuncture and path-dependency analysis, is also, and importantly, ecological. Stability, like change, is an emergent property of institutions, which tend to stabilize after change in a manner analogous to allopatric speciation. EI is more than metaphorically biological in that institutional behaviors are driven by human behaviors whose evolution long preceded the appearance of institutions themselves.

  5. Enhancing a Person, Enhancing a Civilization: A Research Program at the Intersection of Bioethics, Future Studies, and Astrobiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ćirković, Milan M

    2017-07-01

    There are manifold intriguing issues located within largely unexplored borderlands of bioethics, future studies (including global risk analysis), and astrobiology. Human enhancement has for quite some time been among the foci of bioethical debates, but the same cannot be said about its global, transgenerational, and even cosmological consequences. In recent years, discussions of posthuman and, in general terms, postbiological civilization(s) have slowly gained a measure of academic respect, in parallel with the renewed interest in the entire field of future studies and the great strides made in understanding of the origin and evolution of life and intelligence in their widest, cosmic context. These developments promise much deeper synergic answers to questions regarding the long-term future of enhancement: how far can it go? Is human enhancement a further step toward building a true postbiological civilization? Should we actively participate and help shape this process? Is the future of humanity "typical" in the same Copernican sense as our location in space and time is typical in the galaxy, and if so, can we derive important insights about the evolutionary pathways of postbiological evolution from astrobiological and Search for ExtraTerrestrial Intelligence (SETI) studies? These and similar questions could be understood as parts of a possible unifying research program attempting to connect cultural and moral evolution with what we know and understand about their cosmological and biological counterparts.

  6. Establishment of a rearing system of the extremotolerant tardigrade Ramazzottius varieornatus: a new model animal for astrobiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horikawa, Daiki D; Kunieda, Takekazu; Abe, Wataru; Watanabe, Masahiko; Nakahara, Yuichi; Yukuhiro, Fumiko; Sakashita, Tetsuya; Hamada, Nobuyuki; Wada, Seiichi; Funayama, Tomoo; Katagiri, Chihiro; Kobayashi, Yasuhiko; Higashi, Seigo; Okuda, Takashi

    2008-06-01

    Studies on the ability of multicellular organisms to tolerate specific environmental extremes are relatively rare compared to those of unicellular microorganisms in extreme environments. Tardigrades are extremotolerant animals that can enter an ametabolic dry state called anhydrobiosis and have high tolerance to a variety of extreme environmental conditions, particularly while in anhydrobiosis. Although tardigrades have been expected to be a potential model animal for astrobiological studies due to their excellent anhydrobiotic and extremotolerant abilities, few studies of tolerance with cultured tardigrades have been reported, possibly due to the absence of a model species that can be easily maintained under rearing conditions. We report the successful rearing of the herbivorous tardigrade, Ramazzottius varieornatus, by supplying the green alga Chlorella vulgaris as food. The life span was 35 +/- 16.4 d, deposited eggs required 5.7 +/- 1.1 d to hatch, and animals began to deposit eggs 9 d after hatching. The reared individuals of this species had an anhydrobiotic capacity throughout their life cycle in egg, juvenile, and adult stages. Furthermore, the reared adults in an anhydrobiotic state were tolerant of temperatures of 90 degrees C and -196 degrees C, and exposure to 99.8% acetonitrile or irradiation with 4000 Gy (4)He ions. Based on their life history traits and tolerance to extreme stresses, R. varieornatus may be a suitable model for astrobiological studies of multicellular organisms.

  7. NASA Jet Noise Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henderson, Brenda

    2016-01-01

    The presentation highlights NASA's jet noise research for 2016. Jet-noise modeling efforts, jet-surface interactions results, acoustic characteristics of multi-stream jets, and N+2 Supersonic Aircraft system studies are presented.

  8. NASA Image Exchange (NIX)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS) provides access to aerospace-related citations, full-text online documents, and images and videos. The types of information...

  9. NASA Earth Exchange (NEX)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The NASA Earth Exchange (NEX) represents a new platform for the Earth science community that provides a mechanism for scientific collaboration and knowledge sharing....

  10. My NASA Data

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — MY NASA DATA (MND) is a tool that allows anyone to make use of satellite data that was previously unavailable.Through the use of MND’s Live Access Server (LAS) a...

  11. NASA Space Sounds API

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — NASA has released a series of space sounds via sound cloud. We have abstracted away some of the hassle in accessing these sounds, so that developers can play with...

  12. Institutional entrepreneurship:

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gretzinger, Susanne

    2018-01-01

    Institutional entrepreneurship pays specific attention to the process and outcomes of agents who are willing and capable of changing institutions. It has some common ground with the political entrepreneur, a concept that proposes change in norms and institutions because of commitment and activities...... of agents or organisations in the policy arena. The present chapter understands institutional entrepreneurship as the process of changing institutionalised practices. Based on a literature review, it describes the triggers, activities and potential effects of institutional entrepreneurs. The chapter...... concludes by tentatively arguing that political entrepreneurs can be institutional entrepreneurs, but institutional entrepreneurship can be considered as the broader concept that incorporates strategies and visions as well as interpretative-discursive power into the conceptual framework....

  13. NASA Water Resources Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toll, David L.

    2011-01-01

    With increasing population pressure and water usage coupled with climate variability and change, water issues are being reported by numerous groups as the most critical environmental problems facing us in the 21st century. Competitive uses and the prevalence of river basins and aquifers that extend across boundaries engender political tensions between communities, stakeholders and countries. In addition to the numerous water availability issues, water quality related problems are seriously affecting human health and our environment. The potential crises and conflicts especially arise when water is competed among multiple uses. For example, urban areas, environmental and recreational uses, agriculture, and energy production compete for scarce resources, not only in the Western U.S. but throughout much of the U.S. and also in numerous parts of the world. Mitigating these conflicts and meeting water demands and needs requires using existing water resources more efficiently. The NASA Water Resources Program Element works to use NASA products and technology to address these critical water issues. The primary goal of the Water Resources is to facilitate application of NASA Earth science products as a routine use in integrated water resources management for the sustainable use of water. This also includes the extreme events of drought and floods and the adaptation to the impacts from climate change. NASA satellite and Earth system observations of water and related data provide a huge volume of valuable data in both near-real-time and extended back nearly 50 years about the Earth's land surface conditions such as precipitation, snow, soil moisture, water levels, land cover type, vegetation type, and health. NASA Water Resources Program works closely to use NASA and Earth science data with other U.S. government agencies, universities, and non-profit and private sector organizations both domestically and internationally. The NASA Water Resources Program organizes its

  14. NASA, NOAA administrators nominated

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richman, Barbara T.

    President Ronald Reagan recently said he intended to nominate James Montgomery Beggs as NASA Administrator and John V. Byrne as NOAA Administrator. These two positions are key scientific posts that have been vacant since the start of the Reagan administration on January 20. The President also said he intends to nominate Hans Mark as NASA Deputy Administrator. At press time, Reagan had not designated his nominee for the director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy.

  15. Research reports: 1989 NASA/ASEE Summer faculty fellowship program

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Karr, G.R.; Six, R.; Freeman, L.M.

    1989-12-01

    For the twenty-fifth consecutive year, a NASA/ASEE Summer Faculty Fellowship Program was conducted at the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC). The basic objectives of the programs are: (1) to further the professional knowledge of qualified engineering and science faculty members; (2) to stimulate an exchange of ideas between participants and NASA; (3) to enrich and refresh the research and teaching activities of the participants' institutions; and (4) to contribute to the research objectives of the NASA Centers. The Faculty Fellows spent ten weeks at MSFC engaged in a research project compatible with their interests and background and worked in collaboration with a NASA/MSFC colleague

  16. On Beyond Star Trek, the Role of Synthetic Biology in Nasa's Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rothschild, Lynn J.

    2016-01-01

    The time has come to for NASA to exploit the nascent field of synthetic biology in pursuit of its mission, including aeronautics, earth science, astrobiology and notably, human exploration. Conversely, NASA advances the fundamental technology of synthetic biology as no one else can because of its unique expertise in the origin of life and life in extreme environments, including the potential for alternate life forms. This enables unique, creative "game changing" advances. NASA's requirement for minimizing upmass in flight will also drive the field toward miniaturization and automation. These drivers will greatly increase the utility of synthetic biology solutions for military, health in remote areas and commercial purposes. To this end, we have begun a program at NASA to explore the use of synthetic biology in NASA's missions, particularly space exploration. As part of this program, we began hosting an iGEM team of undergraduates drawn from Brown and Stanford Universities to conduct synthetic biology research at NASA Ames Research Center. The 2011 team (http://2011.igem.org/Team:Brown-Stanford) produced an award-winning project on using synthetic biology as a basis for a human Mars settlement and the 2012 team has expanded the use of synthetic biology to estimate the potential for life in the clouds of other planets (http://2012.igem.org/Team:Stanford-Brown; http://www.calacademy.org/sciencetoday/igem-competition/). More recent projects from the Stanford-Brown team have expanded our ideas of how synthetic biology can aid NASA's missions from "Synthetic BioCommunication" (http://2013.igem.org/Team:Stanford-Brown) to a "Biodegradable UAS (drone)" in collaboration with Spelman College (http://2014.igem.org/Team:StanfordBrownSpelman#SBS%20iGEM) and most recently, "Self-Folding Origami" (http://2015.igem.org/Team:Stanford-Brown), the winner of the 2015 award for Manufacturing.

  17. Atacama Rover Astrobiology Drilling Studies: Roving to Find Subsurface Preserved Biomarkers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glass, B.; Davila, A.; Parro, V.; Quinn, R.; Willis, P.; Brinckerhoff, W.; DiRuggiero, J.; Williams, M.; Bergman, D.; Stoker, C.

    2016-05-01

    The ARADS project is a NASA PSTAR that will drill into a Mars analog site in search of biomarkers. Leading to a field test of an integrated rover-drill system with four prototype in-situ instruments for biomarker detection and analysis.

  18. Continuous Risk Management: A NASA Program Initiative

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammer, Theodore F.; Rosenberg, Linda

    1999-01-01

    NPG 7120.5A, "NASA Program and Project Management Processes and Requirements" enacted in April, 1998, requires that "The program or project manager shall apply risk management principles..." The Software Assurance Technology Center (SATC) at NASA GSFC has been tasked with the responsibility for developing and teaching a systems level course for risk management that provides information on how to comply with this edict. The course was developed in conjunction with the Software Engineering Institute at Carnegie Mellon University, then tailored to the NASA systems community. This presentation will briefly discuss the six functions for risk management: (1) Identify the risks in a specific format; (2) Analyze the risk probability, impact/severity, and timeframe; (3) Plan the approach; (4) Track the risk through data compilation and analysis; (5) Control and monitor the risk; (6) Communicate and document the process and decisions.

  19. NASA Systems Engineering Handbook

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hirshorn, Steven R.; Voss, Linda D.; Bromley, Linda K.

    2017-01-01

    The update of this handbook continues the methodology of the previous revision: a top-down compatibility with higher level Agency policy and a bottom-up infusion of guidance from the NASA practitioners in the field. This approach provides the opportunity to obtain best practices from across NASA and bridge the information to the established NASA systems engineering processes and to communicate principles of good practice as well as alternative approaches rather than specify a particular way to accomplish a task. The result embodied in this handbook is a top-level implementation approach on the practice of systems engineering unique to NASA. Material used for updating this handbook has been drawn from many sources, including NPRs, Center systems engineering handbooks and processes, other Agency best practices, and external systems engineering textbooks and guides. This handbook consists of six chapters: (1) an introduction, (2) a systems engineering fundamentals discussion, (3) the NASA program project life cycles, (4) systems engineering processes to get from a concept to a design, (5) systems engineering processes to get from a design to a final product, and (6) crosscutting management processes in systems engineering. The chapters are supplemented by appendices that provide outlines, examples, and further information to illustrate topics in the chapters. The handbook makes extensive use of boxes and figures to define, refine, illustrate, and extend concepts in the chapters.

  20. NASA Accountability Report

    Science.gov (United States)

    1997-01-01

    NASA is piloting fiscal year (FY) 1997 Accountability Reports, which streamline and upgrade reporting to Congress and the public. The document presents statements by the NASA administrator, and the Chief Financial Officer, followed by an overview of NASA's organizational structure and the planning and budgeting process. The performance of NASA in four strategic enterprises is reviewed: (1) Space Science, (2) Mission to Planet Earth, (3) Human Exploration and Development of Space, and (4) Aeronautics and Space Transportation Technology. Those areas which support the strategic enterprises are also reviewed in a section called Crosscutting Processes. For each of the four enterprises, there is discussion about the long term goals, the short term objectives and the accomplishments during FY 1997. The Crosscutting Processes section reviews issues and accomplishments relating to human resources, procurement, information technology, physical resources, financial management, small and disadvantaged businesses, and policy and plans. Following the discussion about the individual areas is Management's Discussion and Analysis, about NASA's financial statements. This is followed by a report by an independent commercial auditor and the financial statements.

  1. Colonial Institutions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    McAtackney, Laura; Palmer, Russell

    2016-01-01

    and the USA which reveal that the study of colonial institutions should not be limited to the functional life of these institutions—or solely those that take the form of monumental architecture—but should include the long shadow of “imperial debris” (Stoler 2008) and immaterial institutions....

  2. Technological Innovations from NASA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pellis, Neal R.

    2006-01-01

    The challenge of human space exploration places demands on technology that push concepts and development to the leading edge. In biotechnology and biomedical equipment development, NASA science has been the seed for numerous innovations, many of which are in the commercial arena. The biotechnology effort has led to rational drug design, analytical equipment, and cell culture and tissue engineering strategies. Biomedical research and development has resulted in medical devices that enable diagnosis and treatment advances. NASA Biomedical developments are exemplified in the new laser light scattering analysis for cataracts, the axial flow left ventricular-assist device, non contact electrocardiography, and the guidance system for LASIK surgery. Many more developments are in progress. NASA will continue to advance technologies, incorporating new approaches from basic and applied research, nanotechnology, computational modeling, and database analyses.

  3. NASA's Scientific Visualization Studio

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitchell, Horace G.

    2003-01-01

    Since 1988, the Scientific Visualization Studio(SVS) at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center has produced scientific visualizations of NASA s scientific research and remote sensing data for public outreach. These visualizations take the form of images, animations, and end-to-end systems and have been used in many venues: from the network news to science programs such as NOVA, from museum exhibits at the Smithsonian to White House briefings. This presentation will give an overview of the major activities and accomplishments of the SVS, and some of the most interesting projects and systems developed at the SVS will be described. Particular emphasis will be given to the practices and procedures by which the SVS creates visualizations, from the hardware and software used to the structures and collaborations by which products are designed, developed, and delivered to customers. The web-based archival and delivery system for SVS visualizations at svs.gsfc.nasa.gov will also be described.

  4. Ariane: NASA's European rival

    Science.gov (United States)

    The successful test launch of two three-quarter ton satellites in the European Space Agency's (ESA) Ariane rocket last June firmly placed ESA in competition with NASA for the lucrative and growing satellite launching market. Under the auspices of the private (but largely French-government financed) Arianespace company, ESA is already attracting customers to its three-stage rocket by offering low costs.According to recent reports [Nature, 292, pp. 785 and 788, 1981], Arianespace has been able to win several U.S. customers away from NASA, including Southern Pacific Communications, Western Union, RCA, Satellite Television Corporation, and GTE. Nature [292, 1981] magazine in an article entitled ‘More Trouble for the Hapless Shuttle’ suggests that it will be possible for Ariane to charge lower prices for a launch than NASA, even with the space shuttle.

  5. Institutional upbringing

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gulløv, Eva

    2008-01-01

    In the chapter, I discuss the role day care institutions play in the construction of the idea of proper childhood in Denmark. Drawing on findings from research on ethnic minority children in two Danish day care institutions, I begin with a discussion of how childcare institutions act as civilising...... agents, empowered with the legitimate right to define and control normality and proper ways of behaving oneself. I aim to show how institutions come to define the normal child and proper childhood in accordance with current efforts toward reinventing national culture, exemplified by legislation requiring...... current testing of Danish language fluency levels among pre-school minority children. Testing language skills marks and defines distinctions that reinforce images of deviance that, in turn, legitimize initiatives to enrol children, specifically minority children, in child care institutions....

  6. A geoethical approach to the geological and astrobiological exploration and research of the Moon and Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinez-Frias, Jesus; Horneck, Gerda; de La Torre Noetzel, Rosa; Rull, Fernando

    Lunar and Mars exploration and research require not only scientific and technological inter-disciplinary cooperation, but also the consideration of budding ethical and scientific integrity issues. COSPAR's planetary protection policy (in coordination with the United Nations Com-mittee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space as well as various other bilateral and multilateral organizations) serves as the consensus standard for biological contamination prevention under the 1967 Outer Space Treaty1 . Space agencies Planetary Protection Policies are mostly consis-tent with the COSPAR policy. Geoethics was formerly promoted in 1991 as a new discipline, involving scientific and societal aspects2 , and its institutionalization was officially established in 2004 with the backing of the Association of Geoscientists for International Development, AGID3 (IUGS/ICSU). Recently, it has been proposed that the integration of geoethical issues in studies on planetary geology and astrobiology would enrich their methodological and con-ceptual character4-6 . The incorporation through geoethics of new questions and approaches associated to the "abiotic world" would involve: 1) extrapolating to space the recently defined and approved IUCN/UNESCO guidelines and recommendations on geodiversity7 as "planetary geodiversity", and 2) widening the classical concept of Planetary Protection, giving an addi-tional "abiotic" dimension to the exploration and research of the Moon and Mars. Given the geological characteristics and planetary evolution of the Moon and Mars, it is obvious that they require tailored geoethical approaches. Some fundamental aspects include, among others: the interrelation with bioethics and organics vs. inorganic contamination in Planetary Protection, the appropriate regulations of some necessary natural disturbances (e.g. on the Moon) dur-ing robotic and manned planetary missions, wilderness/planetary parks8,9 , the correct use of mineralogical and geochemical analytical

  7. NASA research in aeropropulsion

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stewart, W.L.; Weber, R.J.

    1981-12-01

    Future advances in aircraft propulsion systems will be aided by the research performed by NASA and its contractors. This paper gives selected examples of recent accomplishments and current activities relevant to the principal classes of civil and military aircraft. Some instances of new emerging technologies with potential high impact on further progress are discussed. NASA research described includes noise abatement and fuel economy measures for commercial subsonic, supersonic, commuter, and general aviation aircraft, aircraft engines of the jet, turboprop, diesel and rotary types, VTOL, X-wing rotocraft, helicopters, and ''stealth'' aircraft. Applications to military aircraft are also discussed.

  8. Introduction to NASA's Academy of Aerospace Quality

    OpenAIRE

    Smith, Alice; Smith, Jeffrey

    2016-01-01

    The NASA Academy of Aerospace Quality (AAQ) is an internet-based public domain forum of quality assurance-related educational modules for students and faculty at academic institutions targeting those involved in aerospace research, technology development, and payload design and development including Cube Sats, Small Sats, Nano Sats, Rockets and High Altitude Balloons. The target users are university project and research teams but the academy has also been used by K-12 teams, independent space...

  9. Workshop on Sustainable Infrastructure with NASA Science Mission Directorate and NASA's Office of Infrastructure Representatives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosenzweig, Cynthia; Brown, Molly

    2009-01-01

    NASA conducted a workshop in July 2009 to bring together their experts in the climate science and climate impacts domains with their institutional stewards. The workshop serves as a pilot for how a federal agency can start to: a) understand current and future climate change risks, b) develop a list of vulnerable institutional capabilities and assets, and c) develop next steps so flexible adaptation strategies can be developed and implemented. 63 attendees (26 scientists and over 30 institutional stewards) participated in the workshop, which extended across all or part of three days.

  10. NASA's Software Safety Standard

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramsay, Christopher M.

    2007-01-01

    NASA relies more and more on software to control, monitor, and verify its safety critical systems, facilities and operations. Since the 1960's there has hardly been a spacecraft launched that does not have a computer on board that will provide command and control services. There have been recent incidents where software has played a role in high-profile mission failures and hazardous incidents. For example, the Mars Orbiter, Mars Polar Lander, the DART (Demonstration of Autonomous Rendezvous Technology), and MER (Mars Exploration Rover) Spirit anomalies were all caused or contributed to by software. The Mission Control Centers for the Shuttle, ISS, and unmanned programs are highly dependant on software for data displays, analysis, and mission planning. Despite this growing dependence on software control and monitoring, there has been little to no consistent application of software safety practices and methodology to NASA's projects with safety critical software. Meanwhile, academia and private industry have been stepping forward with procedures and standards for safety critical systems and software, for example Dr. Nancy Leveson's book Safeware: System Safety and Computers. The NASA Software Safety Standard, originally published in 1997, was widely ignored due to its complexity and poor organization. It also focused on concepts rather than definite procedural requirements organized around a software project lifecycle. Led by NASA Headquarters Office of Safety and Mission Assurance, the NASA Software Safety Standard has recently undergone a significant update. This new standard provides the procedures and guidelines for evaluating a project for safety criticality and then lays out the minimum project lifecycle requirements to assure the software is created, operated, and maintained in the safest possible manner. This update of the standard clearly delineates the minimum set of software safety requirements for a project without detailing the implementation for those

  11. Protecting and expanding the richness and diversity of life, an ethic for astrobiology research and space exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Randolph, Richard O.; McKay, Christopher P.

    2014-01-01

    The ongoing search for life on other worlds and the prospects of eventual human exploration of the Moon and Mars indicate the need for new ethical guidelines to direct our actions as we search and how we respond if we discover microbial life on other worlds. Here we review how life on other worlds presents a novel question in environmental ethics. We propose a principle of protecting and expanding the richness and diversity of life as the basis of an ethic for astrobiology research and space exploration. There are immediate implications for the operational policies governing how we conduct the search for life on Mars and how we plan for human exploration throughout the Solar System.

  12. Protecting and Expanding the Richness and Diversity of Life, An Ethic for Astrobiology Research and Space Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Randolph, Richard O.; McKay, Chris P.

    2011-01-01

    The ongoing search for life on other worlds and the prospects of eventual human exploration of the Moon and Mars indicate the need for new ethical guidelines to direct our actions as we search and how we respond if we discover microbial life on other worlds. Here we review how life on other worlds presents a novel question in environmental ethics. We propose a principle of protecting and expanding the richness and diversity of life as the basis of an ethic for astrobiology research and space exploration. There are immediate implications for the operational policies governing how we conduct the search for life on Mars and how we plan for human exploration throughout the Solar System.

  13. Lunar and Planetary Science XXXV: Astrobiology Stew: Pinch of Microbes, Smidgen of UV, Touch of Organics, and Dash of Meteorites

    Science.gov (United States)

    2004-01-01

    The session Astrobiology Stew: Pinch of Microbes, Smidgen of UV, Touch of Organics, and Dash of Meteorites includes the following topics: 1) Investigating the Impact of UV Radiation on High-Altitude Shallow Lake Habitats, Life Diversity, and Life Survival Strategies: Clues for Mars' Past Habitability Potential? 2) An Analysis of Potential Photosynthetic Life on Mars; 3) Radiation Inactivation of Bacterial spores on Mars; 4) Hydrophobic Surfaces of Spacecraft Components Enhance the Aggregation of Microorganisms and May Lead to Higher Survival Rates of Bacteria on Mars Landers; 5) Optical Detection of Organic Chemical Biosignatures at Hydrothermal Vents; 6) Signs of Life in Meridiani Planum-What Might Opportunity See (or Miss)? 7) Isolation of PUrines and Pyrimidines from the Murchison Meteorite Using Sublimation; and 8) Relative Amino Acid Composition of CM1 Carbonaceous Chondrites.

  14. Institutional actorhood

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Madsen, Christian Uhrenholdt

    In this paper I describe the changing role of intra-organizational experts in the face of institutional complexity of their field. I do this through a qualitative investigation of the institutional and organizational roles of actors in Danish organizations who are responsible for the efforts...... to comply with the Danish work environment regulation. And by doing so I also describe how institutional complexity and organizational responses to this complexity are particular important for the changing modes of governance that characterizes contemporary welfare states....

  15. The Road to NASA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyers, Valerie

    2010-01-01

    This slide presentation describes the career path and projects that the author worked on during her internship at NASA. As a Graduate Student Research Program (GSRP) participant the assignments that were given include: Human Mesenchymal Stem Cell Research, Spaceflight toxicology, Lunar Airborne Dust Toxicity Advisory Group (LADTAG) and a special study at Devon Island.

  16. NASA science communications strategy

    Science.gov (United States)

    1995-01-01

    In 1994, the Clinton Administration issued a report, 'Science in the National Interest', which identified new national science goals. Two of the five goals are related to science communications: produce the finest scientists and engineers for the 21st century, and raise scientific and technological literacy of all Americans. In addition to the guidance and goals set forth by the Administration, NASA has been mandated by Congress under the 1958 Space Act to 'provide for the widest practicable and appropriate dissemination concerning its activities and the results thereof'. In addition to addressing eight Goals and Plans which resulted from a January 1994 meeting between NASA and members of the broader scientific, education, and communications community on the Public Communication of NASA's Science, the Science Communications Working Group (SCWG) took a comprehensive look at the way the Agency communicates its science to ensure that any changes the Agency made were long-term improvements. The SCWG developed a Science Communications Strategy for NASA and a plan to implement the Strategy. This report outlines a strategy from which effective science communications programs can be developed and implemented across the agency. Guiding principles and strategic themes for the strategy are provided, with numerous recommendations for improvement discussed within the respective themes of leadership, coordination, integration, participation, leveraging, and evaluation.

  17. Institutional Investors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Birkmose, Hanne Søndergaard; Strand, Therese

    Research Question/Issue: Institutional investors are facing increased pressure and threats of legislation from the European Union to abandon passive ownership strategies. This study investigates the prerequisites for – and potential dissimilarities in the practice of, active ownership among...... institutional investors in two Scandinavian countries with diminutive legal and cultural distance in general. Research Findings/Insights: Using data on shareholder proposals from Danish and Swedish annual general meetings from 2006 throughout 2010, we find that institutional investors are approximately....../Policy Implications: Regulators should be aware of the impact by local governance mechanisms, and how shareholders react under different legal and practical prerequisites. The paper also highlights legal elements that differ between Denmark and Sweden, and which might affect institutional activism....

  18. Institutional Controls

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Environmental Protection Agency — This dataset consists of institutional control data from multiple Superfund sites in U.S. EPA Region 8. These data were acquired from multiple sources at different...

  19. Institutional Assessment

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    Many approaches can and have helped research institutions in the developing .... There are many good texts on project and program evaluation, not to ...... has challenged managers and students of organizational development for decades.

  20. NASA Technology Applications Team: Commercial applications of aerospace technology

    Science.gov (United States)

    1994-01-01

    The Research Triangle Institute (RTI) Team has maintained its focus on helping NASA establish partnerships with U.S. industry for dual use development and technology commercialization. Our emphasis has been on outcomes, such as licenses, industry partnerships and commercialization of technologies, that are important to NASA in its mission of contributing to the improved competitive position of U.S. industry. The RTI Team has been successful in the development of NASA/industry partnerships and commercialization of NASA technologies. RTI ongoing commitment to quality and customer responsiveness has driven our staff to continuously improve our technology transfer methodologies to meet NASA's requirements. For example, RTI has emphasized the following areas: (1) Methodology For Technology Assessment and Marketing: RTI has developed and implemented effective processes for assessing the commercial potential of NASA technologies. These processes resulted from an RTI study of best practices, hands-on experience, and extensive interaction with the NASA Field Centers to adapt to their specific needs. (2) Effective Marketing Strategies: RTI surveyed industry technology managers to determine effective marketing tools and strategies. The Technology Opportunity Announcement format and content were developed as a result of this industry input. For technologies with a dynamic visual impact, RTI has developed a stand-alone demonstration diskette that was successful in developing industry interest in licensing the technology. And (3) Responsiveness to NASA Requirements: RTI listened to our customer (NASA) and designed our processes to conform with the internal procedures and resources at each NASA Field Center and the direction provided by NASA's Agenda for Change. This report covers the activities of the Research Triangle Institute Technology Applications Team for the period 1 October 1993 through 31 December 1994.

  1. NASA UAS Update

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauer, Jeffrey Ervin; Mulac, Brenda Lynn

    2010-01-01

    Last year may prove to be a pivotal year for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in the Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) arena, especially in relation to routine UAS access to airspace as NASA accepted an invitation to join the UAS Executive Committee (UAS ExCom). The UAS ExCom is a multi-agency, Federal executive-level committee comprised of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Department of Defense (DoD), Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and NASA with the goals to: 1) Coordinate and align efforts between key Federal Government agencies to achieve routine safe federal public UAS operations in the National Airspace System (NAS); 2) Coordinate and prioritize technical, procedural, regulatory, and policy solutions needed to deliver incremental capabilities; 3) Develop a plan to accommodate the larger stakeholder community at the appropriate time; and 4) Resolve conflicts between Federal Government agencies (FAA, DoD, DHS, and NASA), related to the above goals. The committee was formed in recognition of the need of UAS operated by these agencies to access to the National Airspace System (NAS) to support operational, training, development and research requirements. In order to meet that need, technical, procedural, regulatory, and policy solutions are required to deliver incremental capabilities leading to routine access. The formation of the UAS ExCom is significant in that it represents a tangible commitment by FAA senior leadership to address the UAS access challenge. While the focus of the ExCom is government owned and operated UAS, civil UAS operations are bound to benefit by the progress made in achieving routine access for government UAS. As the UAS ExCom was forming, NASA's Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate began to show renewed interest in UAS, particularly in relation to the future state of the air transportation system under the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen). NASA made funding from the American

  2. Institute for Computational Mechanics in Propulsion (ICOMP)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keith, Theo G., Jr. (Editor); Balog, Karen (Editor); Povinelli, Louis A. (Editor)

    2001-01-01

    The Institute for Computational Mechanics in Propulsion (ICOMP) was formed to develop techniques to improve problem-solving capabilities in all aspects of computational mechanics related to propulsion. ICOMP is operated by the Ohio Aerospace Institute (OAI) and funded via numerous cooperative agreements by the NASA Glenn Research Center in Cleveland, Ohio. This report describes the activities at ICOMP during 1999, the Institute's fourteenth year of operation.

  3. NASA's Astrophysics Data Archives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hasan, H.; Hanisch, R.; Bredekamp, J.

    2000-09-01

    The NASA Office of Space Science has established a series of archival centers where science data acquired through its space science missions is deposited. The availability of high quality data to the general public through these open archives enables the maximization of science return of the flight missions. The Astrophysics Data Centers Coordinating Council, an informal collaboration of archival centers, coordinates data from five archival centers distiguished primarily by the wavelength range of the data deposited there. Data are available in FITS format. An overview of NASA's data centers and services is presented in this paper. A standard front-end modifyer called `Astrowbrowse' is described. Other catalog browsers and tools include WISARD and AMASE supported by the National Space Scince Data Center, as well as ISAIA, a follow on to Astrobrowse.

  4. NASA Photo One

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ross, James C.

    2013-01-01

    This is a photographic record of NASA Dryden flight research aircraft, spanning nearly 25 years. The author has served as a Dryden photographer, and now as its chief photographer and airborne photographer. The results are extraordinary images of in-flight aircraft never seen elsewhere, as well as pictures of aircraft from unusual angles on the ground. The collection is the result of the agency required documentation process for its assets.

  5. Consolidating NASA's Arc Jets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balboni, John A.; Gokcen, Tahir; Hui, Frank C. L.; Graube, Peter; Morrissey, Patricia; Lewis, Ronald

    2015-01-01

    The paper describes the consolidation of NASA's high powered arc-jet testing at a single location. The existing plasma arc-jet wind tunnels located at the Johnson Space Center were relocated to Ames Research Center while maintaining NASA's technical capability to ground-test thermal protection system materials under simulated atmospheric entry convective heating. The testing conditions at JSC were reproduced and successfully demonstrated at ARC through close collaboration between the two centers. New equipment was installed at Ames to provide test gases of pure nitrogen mixed with pure oxygen, and for future nitrogen-carbon dioxide mixtures. A new control system was custom designed, installed and tested. Tests demonstrated the capability of the 10 MW constricted-segmented arc heater at Ames meets the requirements of the major customer, NASA's Orion program. Solutions from an advanced computational fluid dynamics code were used to aid in characterizing the properties of the plasma stream and the surface environment on the calorimeters in the supersonic flow stream produced by the arc heater.

  6. Institutional Awareness

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ahlvik, Carina; Boxenbaum, Eva

    Drawing on dual-process theory and mindfulness research this article sets out to shed light on the conditions that need to be met to create “a reflexive shift in consciousness” argued to be a key foundational mechanism for agency in institutional theory. Although past research has identified...... in consciousness to emerge and argue for how the varying levels of mindfulness in the form of internal and external awareness may manifest as distinct responses to the institutional environment the actor is embedded in....

  7. NASA Announces 2009 Astronomy and Astrophysics Fellows

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-02-01

    WASHINGTON -- NASA has selected fellows in three areas of astronomy and astrophysics for its Einstein, Hubble, and Sagan Fellowships. The recipients of this year's post-doctoral fellowships will conduct independent research at institutions around the country. "The new fellows are among the best and brightest young astronomers in the world," said Jon Morse, director of the Astrophysics Division in NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington. "They already have contributed significantly to studies of how the universe works, the origin of our cosmos and whether we are alone in the cosmos. The fellowships will serve as a springboard for scientific leadership in the years to come, and as an inspiration for the next generation of students and early career researchers." Each fellowship provides support to the awardees for three years. The fellows may pursue their research at any host university or research center of their choosing in the United States. The new fellows will begin their programs in the fall of 2009. "I cannot tell you how much I am looking forward to spending the next few years conducting research in the U.S., thanks to the fellowships," said Karin Oberg, a graduate student in Leiden, The Netherlands. Oberg will study the evolution of water and ices during star formation when she starts her fellowship at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory in Cambridge, Mass. People Who Read This Also Read... Milky Way's Super-efficient Particle Accelerators Caught in The Act Cosmic Heavyweights in Free-for-all Galaxies Coming of Age in Cosmic Blobs Cassiopeia A Comes Alive Across Time and Space A diverse group of 32 young scientists will work on a wide variety of projects, such as understanding supernova hydrodynamics, radio transients, neutron stars, galaxy clusters and the intercluster medium, supermassive black holes, their mergers and the associated gravitational waves, dark energy, dark matter and the reionization process. Other research topics include

  8. European Institutions?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meacham, Darian

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this article is to sketch a phenomenological theory of political institutions and to apply it to some objections and questions raised by Pierre Manent about the project of the European Union and more specifically the question of “European Construction”, i.e. what is the aim of the

  9. Institution Morphisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goguen, Joseph; Rosu, Grigore; Norvig, Peter (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    Institutions formalize the intuitive notion of logical system, including both syntax and semantics. A surprising number of different notions of morphisim have been suggested for forming categories with institutions as objects, and a surprising variety of names have been proposed for them. One goal of this paper is to suggest a terminology that is both uniform and informative to replace the current rather chaotic nomenclature. Another goal is to investigate the properties and interrelations of these notions. Following brief expositions of indexed categories, twisted relations, and Kan extensions, we demonstrate and then exploit the duality between institution morphisms in the original sense of Goguen and Burstall, and the 'plain maps' of Meseguer, obtaining simple uniform proofs of completeness and cocompleteness for both resulting categories; because of this duality, we prefer the name 'comorphism' over 'plain map.' We next consider 'theoroidal' morphisms and comorphisims, which generalize signatures to theories, finding that the 'maps' of Meseguer are theoroidal comorphisms, while theoroidal morphisms are a new concept. We then introduce 'forward' and 'semi-natural' morphisms, and appendices discuss institutions for hidden algebra, universal algebra, partial equational logic, and a variant of order sorted algebra supporting partiality.

  10. NASA Product Peer Review Process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jenks, Ken

    2009-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation describes NASA's product peer review process. The contents include: 1) Inspection/Peer Review at NASA; 2) Reasons for product peer reviews; 3) Different types of peer reviews; and 4) NASA requirements for peer reviews. This presentation also includes a demonstration of an actual product peer review.

  11. Potential and limits of raman spectroscopy for carotenoid detection in microorganisms: implications for astrobiology

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Jehlička, J.; Edwards, H. G. M.; Osterrothova, K.; Novotná, J.; Nedbalová, L.; Kopecký, Jiří; Němec, I.; Oren, A.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 372, č. 2030 (2014) ISSN 1364-503X R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP210/10/0467 Institutional support: RVO:61388971 Keywords : carotenoids * bacteria * cyanobacteria * algae Subject RIV: CF - Physical ; Theoretical Chemistry Impact factor: 2.147, year: 2014

  12. Research Institute for Technical Careers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glenn, Ronald L.

    1996-01-01

    The NASA research grant to Wilberforce University enabled us to establish the Research Institute for Technical Careers (RITC) in order to improve the teaching of science and engineering at Wilberforce. The major components of the research grant are infrastructure development, establishment of the Wilberforce Intensive Summer Experience (WISE), and Joint Research Collaborations with NASA Scientists. (A) Infrastructure Development. The NASA grant has enabled us to improve the standard of our chemistry laboratory and establish the electronics, design, and robotics laboratories. These laboratories have significantly improved the level of instruction at Wilberforce University. (B) Wilberforce Intensive Summer Experience (WISE). The WISE program is a science and engineering bridge program for prefreshman students. It is an intensive academic experience designed to strengthen students' knowledge in mathematics, science, engineering, computing skills, and writing. (C) Joint Collaboration. Another feature of the grant is research collaborations between NASA Scientists and Wilberforce University Scientists. These collaborations have enabled our faculty and students to conduct research at NASA Lewis during the summer and publish research findings in various journals and scientific proceedings.

  13. NASA space radiation transport code development consortium

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Townsend, L. W.

    2005-01-01

    Recently, NASA established a consortium involving the Univ. of Tennessee (lead institution), the Univ. of Houston, Roanoke College and various government and national laboratories, to accelerate the development of a standard set of radiation transport computer codes for NASA human exploration applications. This effort involves further improvements of the Monte Carlo codes HETC and FLUKA and the deterministic code HZETRN, including developing nuclear reaction databases necessary to extend the Monte Carlo codes to carry out heavy ion transport, and extending HZETRN to three dimensions. The improved codes will be validated by comparing predictions with measured laboratory transport data, provided by an experimental measurements consortium, and measurements in the upper atmosphere on the balloon-borne Deep Space Test Bed (DSTB). In this paper, we present an overview of the consortium members and the current status and future plans of consortium efforts to meet the research goals and objectives of this extensive undertaking. (authors)

  14. NASA Lunar Impact Monitoring

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suggs, Robert M.; Moser, D. E.

    2015-01-01

    The MSFC lunar impact monitoring program began in 2006 in support of environment definition for the Constellation (return to Moon) program. Work continued by the Meteoroid Environment Office after Constellation cancellation. Over 330 impacts have been recorded. A paper published in Icarus reported on the first 5 years of observations and 126 calibrated flashes. Icarus: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0019103514002243; ArXiv: http://arxiv.org/abs/1404.6458 A NASA Technical Memorandum on flash locations is in press

  15. NASA Technology Transfer System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tran, Peter B.; Okimura, Takeshi

    2017-01-01

    NTTS is the IT infrastructure for the Agency's Technology Transfer (T2) program containing 60,000+ technology portfolio supporting all ten NASA field centers and HQ. It is the enterprise IT system for facilitating the Agency's technology transfer process, which includes reporting of new technologies (e.g., technology invention disclosures NF1679), protecting intellectual properties (e.g., patents), and commercializing technologies through various technology licenses, software releases, spinoffs, and success stories using custom built workflow, reporting, data consolidation, integration, and search engines.

  16. Resources: NASA for entrepreneurs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jannazo, Mary Ann

    1988-01-01

    The services of NASA's Technology Utilization Program are detailed and highlights of spinoff products in various stages of completion are described. Areas discussed include: Stirling engines for automotive applications, klystron tubes used to reduce power costs at UHF television stations, sports applications of riblet film (e.g., boat racing), reinforced plastic for high-temperature applications, coating technology appropriate for such applications similar to the renovation of the Statue of Liberty, and medical uses of fuel pump technology (e.g., heart pumps).

  17. Institutional obligation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rowan, S.S.; Berwager, S.D.

    1988-01-01

    The institutional obligation is to act to meet primary responsibilities in the face of risks. There are risks involved in taking action, both of a quantifiable and unquantifiable nature. This paper explores weighing the risks, choosing approaches that balance primary obligations with broader ones, and presenting ethical philosophies upon which policies and strategies are based. Federal government organizations and utilities--and Bonneville Power Administration qualifies as both--have a variety of responsibilities to the public they serve. The common responsibility is that of service; for Bonneville the primary responsibility is to serve the energy related needs. It is this primary institutional obligation, as it relates to other responsibilities--and the resulting strategy for handling indoor air quality in Bonneville's new homes program--that this paper examines

  18. NASA's Propulsion Research Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    2004-01-01

    The grand opening of NASA's new, world-class laboratory for research into future space transportation technologies located at the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) in Huntsville, Alabama, took place in July 2004. The state-of-the-art Propulsion Research Laboratory (PRL) serves as a leading national resource for advanced space propulsion research. Its purpose is to conduct research that will lead to the creation and development of innovative propulsion technologies for space exploration. The facility is the epicenter of the effort to move the U.S. space program beyond the confines of conventional chemical propulsion into an era of greatly improved access to space and rapid transit throughout the solar system. The laboratory is designed to accommodate researchers from across the United States, including scientists and engineers from NASA, the Department of Defense, the Department of Energy, universities, and industry. The facility, with 66,000 square feet of useable laboratory space, features a high degree of experimental capability. Its flexibility allows it to address a broad range of propulsion technologies and concepts, such as plasma, electromagnetic, thermodynamic, and propellant propulsion. An important area of emphasis is the development and utilization of advanced energy sources, including highly energetic chemical reactions, solar energy, and processes based on fission, fusion, and antimatter. The Propulsion Research Laboratory is vital for developing the advanced propulsion technologies needed to open up the space frontier, and sets the stage of research that could revolutionize space transportation for a broad range of applications.

  19. The NASA SETI program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Billingham, J.; Brocker, D. H.

    1991-01-01

    In 1959, it was proposed that a sensible way to conduct interstellar communication would be to use radio at or near the frequency of hydrogen. In 1960, the first Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) was conducted using a radiotelescope at Green Bank in West Virginia. Since 1970, NASA has systematically developed a definitive program to conduct a sophisticated search for evidence of extraterrestrial intelligent life. The basic hypothesis is that life may be widespread in the univers, and that in many instances extraterrestrial life may have evolved into technological civilizations. The underlying scientific arguments are based on the continuously improving knowledge of astronomy and astrophysics, especially star system formation, and of planetary science, chemical evolution, and biological evolution. If only one in a million sun-like stars in our galaxy harbors species with cognitive intelligence, then there are 100,000 civilizations in the Milky Way alone. The fields of radioastronomy digital electronic engineering, spectrum analysis, and signal detection have advanced rapidly in the last twenty years and now allow for sophisticated systems to be built in order to attempt the detection of extraterrestrial intelligence signals. In concert with the scientific and engineering communities, NASA has developed, over the last several years, a Microwave Observing Project whose goal is to design, build, and operate SETI systems during the decade of the nineties in pursuit of the goal signal detection. The Microwave Observing Project is now approved and underway. There are two major components in the project: the Target Search Element and the Sky Survey Element.

  20. NASA's interstellar probe mission

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Liewer, P.C.; Ayon, J.A.; Wallace, R.A.; Mewaldt, R.A.

    2000-01-01

    NASA's Interstellar Probe will be the first spacecraft designed to explore the nearby interstellar medium and its interaction with our solar system. As envisioned by NASA's Interstellar Probe Science and Technology Definition Team, the spacecraft will be propelled by a solar sail to reach >200 AU in 15 years. Interstellar Probe will investigate how the Sun interacts with its environment and will directly measure the properties and composition of the dust, neutrals and plasma of the local interstellar material which surrounds the solar system. In the mission concept developed in the spring of 1999, a 400-m diameter solar sail accelerates the spacecraft to ∼15 AU/year, roughly 5 times the speed of Voyager 1 and 2. The sail is used to first bring the spacecraft to ∼0.25 AU to increase the radiation pressure before heading out in the interstellar upwind direction. After jettisoning the sail at ∼5 AU, the spacecraft coasts to 200-400 AU, exploring the Kuiper Belt, the boundaries of the heliosphere, and the nearby interstellar medium

  1. NASA Data Archive Evaluation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holley, Daniel C.; Haight, Kyle G.; Lindstrom, Ted

    1997-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to expose a range of naive individuals to the NASA Data Archive and to obtain feedback from them, with the goal of learning how useful people with varied backgrounds would find the Archive for research and other purposes. We processed 36 subjects in four experimental categories, designated in this report as C+R+, C+R-, C-R+ and C-R-, for computer experienced researchers, computer experienced non-researchers, non-computer experienced researchers, and non-computer experienced non-researchers, respectively. This report includes an assessment of general patterns of subject responses to the various aspects of the NASA Data Archive. Some of the aspects examined were interface-oriented, addressing such issues as whether the subject was able to locate information, figure out how to perform desired information retrieval tasks, etc. Other aspects were content-related. In doing these assessments, answers given to different questions were sometimes combined. This practice reflects the tendency of the subjects to provide answers expressing their experiences across question boundaries. Patterns of response are cross-examined by subject category in order to bring out deeper understandings of why subjects reacted the way they did to the archive. After the general assessment, there will be a more extensive summary of the replies received from the test subjects.

  2. Sharing NASA's Scientific Explorations with Communities Across the Country: A Study of Public Libraries Collaborating with NASA STEM Experts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dusenbery, P.; LaConte, K.; Holland, A.; Harold, J. B.; Johnson, A.; Randall, C.; Fitzhugh, G.

    2017-12-01

    NASA research programs are helping humanity understand the origin and evolution of galaxies, stars, and planets, how our Sun varies and impacts the heliosphere, and defining the conditions necessary to support life beyond Earth. As places that offer their services for free, public libraries have become the "public square" by providing a place where members of a community can gather for information, educational programming, and policy discussions. Libraries are also developing new ways to engage their patrons in STEM learning. The Space Science Institute's (SSI) National Center for Interactive Learning (NCIL) was funded by NASA`s Science Mission Directorate (SMD) to develop and implement a project called NASA@ My Library: A National Earth and Space Science Initiative That Connects NASA, Public Libraries and Their Communities. NCIL's STAR Library Network (STAR_Net) is providing important leverage to expand its community of practice that serves both librarians and STEM professionals. Seventy-five libraries were selected through a competitive application process to receive NASA STEM Facilitation Kits, NASA STEM Backpacks for circulation, financial resources, training, and partnership opportunities. Initial survey data from the 75 NASA@ My Library partners showed that, while they are actively providing programming, few STEM programs connected with NASA science and engineering. With the launch of the initiative - including training, resources, and STEM-related event opportunities - all 75 libraries are engaged in offering NASA-focused programs, including with NASA subject matter experts. This talk will highlight the impacts the initiative is having on both public library partners and many others across the country.

  3. Institutional ethnography

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lund, Rebecca; Tienari, Janne

    2016-01-01

    The study of M&As is dominated by positivist and functionalist world views and the use of quantitative methods. Although extant research also uses qualitative and mixed methods, it can be criticized for viewing its subject matter through an abstract and external lens. The researcher is placed in ......, and point to some of the problems in M&A studies identified through this lens. Finally, we argue why institutional ethnography, in comparison with other methods of inquiry, is particularly fruitful in the study of mergers and acquisitions....

  4. Research Institute for Advanced Computer Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gross, Anthony R. (Technical Monitor); Leiner, Barry M.

    2000-01-01

    The Research Institute for Advanced Computer Science (RIACS) carries out basic research and technology development in computer science, in support of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's missions. RIACS is located at the NASA Ames Research Center. It currently operates under a multiple year grant/cooperative agreement that began on October 1, 1997 and is up for renewal in the year 2002. Ames has been designated NASA's Center of Excellence in Information Technology. In this capacity, Ames is charged with the responsibility to build an Information Technology Research Program that is preeminent within NASA. RIACS serves as a bridge between NASA Ames and the academic community, and RIACS scientists and visitors work in close collaboration with NASA scientists. RIACS has the additional goal of broadening the base of researchers in these areas of importance to the nation's space and aeronautics enterprises. RIACS research focuses on the three cornerstones of information technology research necessary to meet the future challenges of NASA missions: (1) Automated Reasoning for Autonomous Systems. Techniques are being developed enabling spacecraft that will be self-guiding and self-correcting to the extent that they will require little or no human intervention. Such craft will be equipped to independently solve problems as they arise, and fulfill their missions with minimum direction from Earth; (2) Human-Centered Computing. Many NASA missions require synergy between humans and computers, with sophisticated computational aids amplifying human cognitive and perceptual abilities; (3) High Performance Computing and Networking. Advances in the performance of computing and networking continue to have major impact on a variety of NASA endeavors, ranging from modeling and simulation to data analysis of large datasets to collaborative engineering, planning and execution. In addition, RIACS collaborates with NASA scientists to apply information technology research to a

  5. NASA Airborne Astronomy Ambassadors (AAA)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Backman, D. E.; Harman, P. K.; Clark, C.

    2016-12-01

    NASA's Airborne Astronomy Ambassadors (AAA) is a three-part professional development (PD) program for high school physics and astronomy teachers. The AAA experience consists of: (1) blended-learning professional development composed of webinars, asynchronous content learning, and a series of hands-on workshops (2) a STEM immersion experience at NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center's B703 science research aircraft facility in Palmdale, California, and (3) ongoing participation in the AAA community of practice (CoP) connecting participants with astrophysics and planetary science Subject Matter Experts (SMEs). The SETI Institute (SI) is partnering with school districts in Santa Clara and Los Angeles Counties during the AAA program's "incubation" period, calendar years 2016 through 2018. AAAs will be selected by the school districts based on criteria developed during spring 2016 focus group meetings led by the program's external evaluator, WestEd.. Teachers with 3+ years teaching experience who are assigned to teach at least 2 sections in any combination of the high school courses Physics (non-AP), Physics of the Universe (California integrated model), Astronomy, or Earth & Space Sciences are eligible. Partner districts will select at least 48 eligible applicants with SI oversight. WestEd will randomly assign selected AAAs to group A or group B. Group A will complete PD in January - June of 2017 and then participate in SOFIA science flights during fall 2017 (SOFIA Cycle 5). Group B will act as a control during the 2017-18 school year. Group B will then complete PD in January - June of 2018 and participate in SOFIA science flights in fall 2018 (Cycle 6). Under the current plan, opportunities for additional districts to seek AAA partnerships with SI will be offered in 2018 or 2019. A nominal two-week AAA curriculum component will be developed by SI for classroom delivery that will be aligned with selected California Draft Science Framework Disciplinary Core Ideas

  6. NASA Communications Augmentation network

    Science.gov (United States)

    Omidyar, Guy C.; Butler, Thomas E.; Laios, Straton C.

    1990-01-01

    The NASA Communications (Nascom) Division of the Mission Operations and Data Systems Directorate (MO&DSD) is to undertake a major initiative to develop the Nascom Augmentation (NAUG) network to achieve its long-range service objectives for operational data transport to support the Space Station Freedom Program, the Earth Observing System (EOS), and other projects. The NAUG is the Nascom ground communications network being developed to accommodate the operational traffic of the mid-1990s and beyond. The NAUG network development will be based on the Open Systems Interconnection Reference Model (OSI-RM). This paper describes the NAUG network architecture, subsystems, topology, and services; addresses issues of internetworking the Nascom network with other elements of the Space Station Information System (SSIS); discusses the operations environment. This paper also notes the areas of related research and presents the current conception of how the network will provide broadband services in 1998.

  7. NASA commercial programs

    Science.gov (United States)

    1990-01-01

    Highlights of NASA-sponsored and assisted commercial space activities of 1989 are presented. Industrial R and D in space, centers for the commercial development of space, and new cooperative agreements are addressed in the U.S. private sector in space section. In the building U.S. competitiveness through technology section, the following topics are presented: (1) technology utilization as a national priority; (2) an exploration of benefits; and (3) honoring Apollo-Era spinoffs. International and domestic R and D trends, and the space sector are discussed in the section on selected economic indicators. Other subjects included in this report are: (1) small business innovation; (2) budget highlights and trends; (3) commercial programs management; and (4) the commercial programs advisory committee.

  8. NASA scheduling technologies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adair, Jerry R.

    1994-01-01

    This paper is a consolidated report on ten major planning and scheduling systems that have been developed by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). A description of each system, its components, and how it could be potentially used in private industry is provided in this paper. The planning and scheduling technology represented by the systems ranges from activity based scheduling employing artificial intelligence (AI) techniques to constraint based, iterative repair scheduling. The space related application domains in which the systems have been deployed vary from Space Shuttle monitoring during launch countdown to long term Hubble Space Telescope (HST) scheduling. This paper also describes any correlation that may exist between the work done on different planning and scheduling systems. Finally, this paper documents the lessons learned from the work and research performed in planning and scheduling technology and describes the areas where future work will be conducted.

  9. NASA Space Life Sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayes, Judith

    2009-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews the requirements that NASA has for the medical service of a crew returning to earth after long duration space flight. The scenarios predicate a water landing. Two scenarios are reviewed that outline the ship-board medical operations team and the ship board science reseach team. A schedule for the each crew upon landing is posited for each of scenarios. The requirement for a heliport on board the ship is reviewed and is on the requirement for a helicopter to return the Astronauts to the Baseline Data Collection Facility (BDCF). The ideal is to integrate the medical and science requirements, to minimize the risks and Inconveniences to the returning astronauts. The medical support that is required for all astronauts returning from long duration space flight (30 days or more) is reviewed. The personnel required to support the team is outlined. The recommendations for medical operations and science research for crew support are stated.

  10. NASA, Building Tomorrow's Future

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mango, Edward

    2011-01-01

    We, as NASA, continue to Dare Mighty Things. Here we are in October. In my country, the United States of America, we celebrate the anniversary of Christopher Columbus's arrival in the Americas, which occurred on October 12, 1492. His story, although happening over 500 years ago, is still very valid today. It is a part of the American spirit; part of the international human spirit. Columbus is famous for discovering the new world we now call America, but he probably never envisioned what great discoveries would be revealed many generations later. But in order for Columbus to begin his great adventure, he needed a business plan. Ho would he go about obtaining the funds and support necessary to build, supply, and man the ships required for his travels? He had a lot of obstacles and distractions. He needed a strong, internal drive to achieve his plans and recruit a willing crew of explorers also ready to risk their all for the unknown journey ahead. As Columbus set sail, he said "By prevailing over all obstacles and distractions, one may unfailingly arrive at his chosen goal or destination." Columbus may not have known he was on a journey for all human exploration. Recently, Charlie Bolden, the NASA Administrator, said, "Human exploration is and has always been about making life better for humans on Earth." Today, NASA and the U.S. human spaceflight program hold many of the same attributes as did Columbus and his contemporaries - a willing, can-do spirit. We are on the threshold of exciting new times in space exploration. Like Columbus, we need a business plan to take us into the future. We need to design the best ships and utilize the best designers, with their past knowledge and experience, to build those ships. We need funding and support from governments to achieve these goals of space exploration into the unknown. NASA does have that business plan, and it is an ambitious plan for human spaceflight and exploration. Today, we have a magnificent spaceflight

  11. Configuration Management at NASA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doreswamy, Rajiv

    2013-01-01

    NASA programs are characterized by complexity, harsh environments and the fact that we usually have one chance to get it right. Programs last decades and need to accept new hardware and technology as it is developed. We have multiple suppliers and international partners Our challenges are many, our costs are high and our failures are highly visible. CM systems need to be scalable, adaptable to new technology and span the life cycle of the program (30+ years). Multiple Systems, Contractors and Countries added major levels of complexity to the ISS program and CM/DM and Requirements management systems center dot CM Systems need to be designed for long design life center dot Space Station Design started in 1984 center dot Assembly Complete in 2012 center dot Systems were developed on a task basis without an overall system perspective center dot Technology moves faster than a large project office, try to make sure you have a system that can adapt

  12. NASA Integrated Network COOP

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Michael L.; Wright, Nathaniel; Tai, Wallace

    2012-01-01

    Natural disasters, terrorist attacks, civil unrest, and other events have the potential of disrupting mission-essential operations in any space communications network. NASA's Space Communications and Navigation office (SCaN) is in the process of studying options for integrating the three existing NASA network elements, the Deep Space Network, the Near Earth Network, and the Space Network, into a single integrated network with common services and interfaces. The need to maintain Continuity of Operations (COOP) after a disastrous event has a direct impact on the future network design and operations concepts. The SCaN Integrated Network will provide support to a variety of user missions. The missions have diverse requirements and include anything from earth based platforms to planetary missions and rovers. It is presumed that an integrated network, with common interfaces and processes, provides an inherent advantage to COOP in that multiple elements and networks can provide cross-support in a seamless manner. The results of trade studies support this assumption but also show that centralization as a means of achieving integration can result in single points of failure that must be mitigated. The cost to provide this mitigation can be substantial. In support of this effort, the team evaluated the current approaches to COOP, developed multiple potential approaches to COOP in a future integrated network, evaluated the interdependencies of the various approaches to the various network control and operations options, and did a best value assessment of the options. The paper will describe the trade space, the study methods, and results of the study.

  13. NASA Bluetooth Wireless Communications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Robert D.

    2007-01-01

    NASA has been interested in wireless communications for many years, especially when the crew size of the International Space Station (ISS) was reduced to two members. NASA began a study to find ways to improve crew efficiency to make sure the ISS could be maintained with limited crew capacity and still be a valuable research testbed in Low-Earth Orbit (LEO). Currently the ISS audio system requires astronauts to be tethered to the audio system, specifically a device called the Audio Terminal Unit (ATU). Wireless communications would remove the tether and allow astronauts to freely float from experiment to experiment without having to worry about moving and reconnecting the associated cabling or finding the space equivalent of an extension cord. A wireless communication system would also improve safety and reduce system susceptibility to Electromagnetic Interference (EMI). Safety would be improved because a crewmember could quickly escape a fire while maintaining communications with the ground and other crewmembers at any location. In addition, it would allow the crew to overcome the volume limitations of the ISS ATU. This is especially important to the Portable Breathing Apparatus (PBA). The next generation of space vehicles and habitats also demand wireless attention. Orion will carry up to six crewmembers in a relatively small cabin. Yet, wireless could become a driving factor to reduce launch weight and increase habitable volume. Six crewmembers, each tethered to a panel, could result in a wiring mess even in nominal operations. In addition to Orion, research is being conducted to determine if Bluetooth is appropriate for Lunar Habitat applications.

  14. Institute news

    Science.gov (United States)

    1999-11-01

    Joining the team A new member of staff has recently joined the Institute of Physics Education Department (Schools and Colleges) team. (Dr) Steven Chapman will have managerial responsibility for physics education issues in the 11 - 16 age range, particularly on the policy side. He will work closely with Mary Wood, who spends much of her time out and about doing the practical things to support physics education pre-16. Catherine Wilson will be spending more of her time working to support the Post-16 Physics Initiative but retains overall responsibility for the department. Steven graduated in Physics and Astronomy and then went on to do his doctorate at Sussex University. He stayed in the research field for a while, including a period at NPL. Then, having decided to train as a teacher, he taught for the last five years, most recently at a brand new school in Sutton where he was Head of Physics. Physics update Dates for `Physics Update' courses in 2000, intended for practising science teachers, are as follows: 1 - 3 April: Malvern College 9 - 10 June: Stirling University 8 - 10 July: York University 8 - 10 December: Oxford University The deadline for applications for the course to be held on 11 - 13 December 1999 at the School of Physics, Exeter University, is 12 November, so any late enquiries should be sent to Leila Solomon at The Institute of Physics, 76 Portland Place, London W1N 3DH (tel: 020 7470 4821) right away. Name that teacher! Late nominations are still welcome for the Teachers of Physics/Teachers of Primary Science awards for the year 2000. Closing date for nominations is `the last week in November'. Further details can be obtained from Catherine Wilson or Barbara Hill in the Institute's Education Department. Forward and back! The Education Group's one-day meeting on 13 November is accepting bookings until almost the last minute, so don't delay your application! The day is entitled `Post-16 physics: Looking forward, learning from the past' and it aims to

  15. NASA and The Semantic Web

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ashish, Naveen

    2005-01-01

    We provide an overview of several ongoing NASA endeavors based on concepts, systems, and technology from the Semantic Web arena. Indeed NASA has been one of the early adopters of Semantic Web Technology and we describe ongoing and completed R&D efforts for several applications ranging from collaborative systems to airspace information management to enterprise search to scientific information gathering and discovery systems at NASA.

  16. The NASA Polarimetric Radar (NPOL)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petersen, Walter A.; Wolff, David B.

    2013-01-01

    Characteristics of the NASA NPOL S-band dual-polarimetric radar are presented including its operating characteristics, field configuration, scanning capabilities and calibration approaches. Examples of precipitation science data collections conducted using various scan types, and associated products, are presented for different convective system types and previous field campaign deployments. Finally, the NASA NPOL radar location is depicted in its home base configuration within the greater Wallops Flight Facility precipitation research array supporting NASA Global Precipitation Measurement Mission ground validation.

  17. The 2004 NASA Faculty Fellowship Program Research Reports

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pruitt, J. R.; Karr, G.; Freeman, L. M.; Hassan, R.; Day, J. B. (Compiler)

    2005-01-01

    This is the administrative report for the 2004 NASA Faculty Fellowship Program (NFFP) held at the George C. Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) for the 40th consecutive year. The NFFP offers science and engineering faculty at U.S. colleges and universities hands-on exposure to NASA s research challenges through summer research residencies and extended research opportunities at participating NASA research Centers. During this program, fellows work closely with NASA colleagues on research challenges important to NASA's strategic enterprises that are of mutual interest to the fellow and the Center. The nominal starting and .nishing dates for the 10-week program were June 1 through August 6, 2004. The program was sponsored by NASA Headquarters, Washington, DC, and operated under contract by The University of Alabama, The University of Alabama in Huntsville, and Alabama A&M University. In addition, promotion and applications are managed by the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) and assessment is completed by Universities Space Research Association (USRA). The primary objectives of the NFFP are to: Increase the quality and quantity of research collaborations between NASA and the academic community that contribute to the Agency s space aeronautics and space science mission. Engage faculty from colleges, universities, and community colleges in current NASA research and development. Foster a greater public awareness of NASA science and technology, and therefore facilitate academic and workforce literacy in these areas. Strengthen faculty capabilities to enhance the STEM workforce, advance competition, and infuse mission-related research and technology content into classroom teaching. Increase participation of underrepresented and underserved faculty and institutions in NASA science and technology.

  18. NASA Information Technology Implementation Plan

    Science.gov (United States)

    2000-01-01

    NASA's Information Technology (IT) resources and IT support continue to be a growing and integral part of all NASA missions. Furthermore, the growing IT support requirements are becoming more complex and diverse. The following are a few examples of the growing complexity and diversity of NASA's IT environment. NASA is conducting basic IT research in the Intelligent Synthesis Environment (ISE) and Intelligent Systems (IS) Initiatives. IT security, infrastructure protection, and privacy of data are requiring more and more management attention and an increasing share of the NASA IT budget. Outsourcing of IT support is becoming a key element of NASA's IT strategy as exemplified by Outsourcing Desktop Initiative for NASA (ODIN) and the outsourcing of NASA Integrated Services Network (NISN) support. Finally, technology refresh is helping to provide improved support at lower cost. Recently the NASA Automated Data Processing (ADP) Consolidation Center (NACC) upgraded its bipolar technology computer systems with Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor (CMOS) technology systems. This NACC upgrade substantially reduced the hardware maintenance and software licensing costs, significantly increased system speed and capacity, and reduced customer processing costs by 11 percent.

  19. NASA's National Center for Advanced Manufacturing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vickers, John

    2003-01-01

    NASA has designated the Principal Center Assignment to the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) for implementation of the National Center for Advanced Manufacturing (NCAM). NCAM is NASA s leading resource for the aerospace manufacturing research, development, and innovation needs that are critical to the goals of the Agency. Through this initiative NCAM s people work together with government, industry, and academia to ensure the technology base and national infrastructure are available to develop innovative manufacturing technologies with broad application to NASA Enterprise programs, and U.S. industry. Educational enhancements are ever-present within the NCAM focus to promote research, to inspire participation and to support education and training in manufacturing. Many important accomplishments took place during 2002. Through NCAM, NASA was among five federal agencies involved in manufacturing research and development (R&D) to launch a major effort to exchange information and cooperate directly to enhance the payoffs from federal investments. The Government Agencies Technology Exchange in Manufacturing (GATE-M) is the only active effort to specifically and comprehensively address manufacturing R&D across the federal government. Participating agencies include the departments of Commerce (represented by the National Institute of Standards and Technology), Defense, and Energy, as well as the National Science Foundation and NASA. MSFC s ongoing partnership with the State of Louisiana, the University of New Orleans, and Lockheed Martin Corporation at the Michoud Assembly Facility (MAF) progressed significantly. Major capital investments were initiated for world-class equipment additions including a universal friction stir welding system, composite fiber placement machine, five-axis machining center, and ten-axis laser ultrasonic nondestructive test system. The NCAM consortium of five universities led by University of New Orleans with Mississippi State University

  20. Research reports: The 1980 NASA/ASEE Summer Faculty Fellowship Program. [aeronautical research and development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barfield, B. F. (Editor); Kent, M. I. (Editor); Dozier, J. (Editor); Karr, G. (Editor)

    1980-01-01

    The Summer Faculty Fellowship Research Program objectives are: to further the professional knowledge of qualified engineering and science faculty members; to stimulate an exchange of ideas between participants and NASA; to enrich and refresh the research and teaching activities of participants and institutions; and to contribute to the research objectives at the NASA centers. The Faculty Fellows engaged in research projects commensurate with their interests and background and worked in collaboration with a NASA/MSFC colleague.

  1. NASA Facts, The Viking Mission.

    Science.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Washington, DC. Educational Programs Div.

    Presented is one of a series of publications of National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) facts about the exploration of Mars. The Viking mission to Mars, consisting of two unmanned NASA spacecraft launched in August and September, 1975, is described. A description of the spacecraft and their paths is given. A diagram identifying the…

  2. NASA System Engineering Design Process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roman, Jose

    2011-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews NASA's use of systems engineering for the complete life cycle of a project. Systems engineering is a methodical, disciplined approach for the design, realization, technical management, operations, and retirement of a system. Each phase of a NASA project is terminated with a Key decision point (KDP), which is supported by major reviews.

  3. Assessing Student Attitudes Towards Science in an Adaptive Online Astrobiology Course: Comparing Online and On-Campus Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buxner, S.; Perera, V.; Mead, C.; Horodyskyj, L.; Semken, S. C.; Lopatto, D.; Anbar, A. D.

    2016-12-01

    General-education Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) courses are considered essential to a college education, in part, to train students to think critically and to make informed decisions about complex scientific issues such as climate change and public health. Therefore, the goals of these STEM courses go beyond content knowledge to include generating positive attitudes towards science, developing competence in evaluating scientific information in everyday life, and understanding the nature of science. The Classroom Undergraduate Research Experience (CURE) survey is frequently used to measure these attitudes, but it has not previously been used in an online, general education course. In this work, we administered the CURE survey for three semesters (N = 774) before and after completion of an online astrobiology course called Habitable Worlds. We compare students taking this course as part of fully-online degree programs (o-course) with those taking it as part of traditional undergraduate programs (i-course). More females and older students were among the o-course group, while overall the course had more white students than the Arizona State University average. Mean course grades were similar between the two groups but attitudes toward science differred significantly. O-course students began the course with more positive attitudes than i-course students, and o-course students also showed more positive changes at the end of the course. These differences suggest lesser intrinsic motivation among the i-course students. Additionally, pre-course attitudes correlated with final course grade for o-course students, but not for i-course students, which implies that success among o-course students is influenced by different factors than i-course students. Thus, effective student support strategies may differ for online-only students. Future work will include student interviews to better calibrate the CURE survey to online science courses.

  4. Assessing Attitudes Towards Science During an Adaptive Online Astrobiology Course: Comparing Online and On-Campus Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perera, Viranga; Mead, Chris; Buxner, Sanlyn; Horodyskyj, Lev; Semken, Steven; Lopatto, David; Anbar, Ariel

    2016-10-01

    General-education Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) courses are accepted as essential to a college education. An often cited reason is to train a scientifically literate populace who can think critically and make informed decisions about complex issues such as climate change, health care, and atomic energy. Goals of these STEM courses, therefore, go beyond content knowledge to include generating positive attitudes towards science, developing competence in evaluating scientific information in everyday life and understanding the nature of science. To gauge if such non-content learning outcomes are being met in our course, an online astrobiology course called Habitable Worlds, we administered the Classroom Undergraduate Research Experience (CURE) survey to students. The survey was administered before and after completion of the course for three semesters starting with the Fall 2014 semester and ending with the Fall 2015 semester (N = 774). A factor analysis indicated three factors on attitudes: toward science education, toward the interconnectedness of science with non-science fields, and toward the nature of science. Here we present some differences between students enrolled in online degree programs (o-course) and those enrolled in traditional undergraduate programs (i-course). While mean course grades were similar, changes in attitudes toward science differ significantly between o-course and i-course students. The o-course students began the course with more positive attitudes across all three factors than the i-course students. Their attitudes toward science education improved during the course, while the i-course students showed no change. Attitudes toward the other two factors declined in both populations during the course, but declines were smaller among o-course students. These differences may indicate lesser intrinsic motivation among the i-course students. The CURE survey has not been used before in an online course; therefore, we will

  5. Astrobiology Training in Lava Tubes (ATiLT): Characterizing coralloid speleothems in basaltic lava tubes as a Mars analogue

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ni, J.; Leveille, R. J.; Douglas, P.

    2017-12-01

    Coralloid speleothems or cave corals are small mineralised nodes that can take a variety of forms, and which develop through groundwater seepage and water-rock interaction in caves. They are found commonly on Earth in a plethora of caves, including lava tubes. Since lava tubes have been identified on the surface of Mars from remotely sensed images, there has been interest in studying Earth's lava tube systems as an analogue for understanding Martian lava environments. If cave minerals were found on Mars, they could indicate past or present water-rock interaction in the Martian subsurface. Martian lava tubes could also provide insights into habitable subsurface environments as well as conditions favourable for the synthesis and preservation of biosignatures. One of the aims of the Astrobiology Training in Lava Tubes (ATiLT) project is to analyze biosignatures and paleoenvironmental indicators in secondary cave minerals, which will be looked at in-situ and compared to collected field samples. In this study, secondary mineralization in lava cave systems from Lava Beds National Monument, CA is examined. In the field, coralloid speleothems have been observed growing on all surfaces of the caves, including cave ceilings, floors, walls and overhangs. They are also observed growing adjacent to biofilms, which sometimes fill in the cracks of the coralloid nodes. Preliminary results show the presence of opal, calcite, quartz and other minor minerals in the speleothems. This study seeks to understand the formation mechanism and source of these secondary minerals, as well as determine their possible relation to the biofilms. This will be done through the analysis of the water chemistry, isotope geochemistry and microscale mineralogy.

  6. The Proposed Mars Astrobiology Explorer - Cacher [MAX-C] Rover: First Step in a Potential Sample Return Campaign

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Carlton C.; Beaty, David W.

    2010-01-01

    Sample return from Mars has been advocated by numerous scientific advisory panels for over 30 years, most prominently beginning with the National Research Council s [1] strategy for the exploration of the inner solar system, and most recently by the Mars Exploration Program Analysis Group (MEPAG s) Next Decade Science Analysis Group [2]. Analysis of samples here on Earth would have enormous advantages over in situ analyses in producing the data quality needed to address many of the complex scientific questions the community has posed about Mars. Instead of a small, predetermined set of analytical techniques, state of the art preparative and instrumental resources of the entire scientific community could be applied to the samples. The analytical emphasis could shift as the meaning of each result becomes better appreciated. These arguments apply both to igneous rocks and to layered sedimentary materials, either of which could contain water and other volatile constituents. In 2009 MEPAG formed the Mid-Range Rover Science Analysis Group (MRR-SAG) to formulate a mission concept that would address two general objectives: (1) conduct high-priority in situ science and (2) make concrete steps towards the potential return of samples to Earth. This analysis resulted in a mission concept named the Mars Astrobiology Explorer-Cacher (MAX-C), which was envisioned for launch in the 2018 opportunity. After extensive discussion, this group concluded that by far the most definitive contribution to sample return by this mission would be to collect and cache, in an accessible location, a suite of compelling samples that could potentially be recovered and returned by a subsequent mission. This would have the effect of separating two of the essential functions of MSR, the acquisition of the sample collection and its delivery to martian orbit, into two missions.

  7. The Biomolecule Sequencer Project: Nanopore Sequencing as a Dual-Use Tool for Crew Health and Astrobiology Investigations

    Science.gov (United States)

    John, K. K.; Botkin, D. S.; Burton, A. S.; Castro-Wallace, S. L.; Chaput, J. D.; Dworkin, J. P.; Lehman, N.; Lupisella, M. L.; Mason, C. E.; Smith, D. J.; hide

    2016-01-01

    Human missions to Mars will fundamentally transform how the planet is explored, enabling new scientific discoveries through more sophisticated sample acquisition and processing than can currently be implemented in robotic exploration. The presence of humans also poses new challenges, including ensuring astronaut safety and health and monitoring contamination. Because the capability to transfer materials to Earth will be extremely limited, there is a strong need for in situ diagnostic capabilities. Nucleotide sequencing is a particularly powerful tool because it can be used to: (1) mitigate microbial risks to crew by allowing identification of microbes in water, in air, and on surfaces; (2) identify optimal treatment strategies for infections that arise in crew members; and (3) track how crew members, microbes, and mission-relevant organisms (e.g., farmed plants) respond to conditions on Mars through transcriptomic and genomic changes. Sequencing would also offer benefits for science investigations occurring on the surface of Mars by permitting identification of Earth-derived contamination in samples. If Mars contains indigenous life, and that life is based on nucleic acids or other closely related molecules, sequencing would serve as a critical tool for the characterization of those molecules. Therefore, spaceflight-compatible nucleic acid sequencing would be an important capability for both crew health and astrobiology exploration. Advances in sequencing technology on Earth have been driven largely by needs for higher throughput and read accuracy. Although some reduction in size has been achieved, nearly all commercially available sequencers are not compatible with spaceflight due to size, power, and operational requirements. Exceptions are nanopore-based sequencers that measure changes in current caused by DNA passing through pores; these devices are inherently much smaller and require significantly less power than sequencers using other detection methods

  8. NASA Advanced Supercomputing Facility Expansion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thigpen, William W.

    2017-01-01

    The NASA Advanced Supercomputing (NAS) Division enables advances in high-end computing technologies and in modeling and simulation methods to tackle some of the toughest science and engineering challenges facing NASA today. The name "NAS" has long been associated with leadership and innovation throughout the high-end computing (HEC) community. We play a significant role in shaping HEC standards and paradigms, and provide leadership in the areas of large-scale InfiniBand fabrics, Lustre open-source filesystems, and hyperwall technologies. We provide an integrated high-end computing environment to accelerate NASA missions and make revolutionary advances in science. Pleiades, a petaflop-scale supercomputer, is used by scientists throughout the U.S. to support NASA missions, and is ranked among the most powerful systems in the world. One of our key focus areas is in modeling and simulation to support NASA's real-world engineering applications and make fundamental advances in modeling and simulation methods.

  9. Evaluación de la enseñanza de la Astrobiología en Secundaria: análisis de libros de texto y opiniones de profesores en formación

    OpenAIRE

    Oreiro Rey, Raquel; Solbes Matarredona, Jordi

    2015-01-01

    En este trabajo se presenta una evaluación diagnóstica de la enseñanza de la Astrobiología mediante el análisis de libros de texto de las asignaturas de Biología y Geología de 4º de la ESO y Ciencias para el Mundo Contemporáneo de 1º de Bachillerato. El objetivo principal es comprobar si la Astrobiología se ha incorporado adecuadamente en la enseñanza secundaria. Se muestran, además, las opiniones de un grupo de profesores en formación sobre la enseñanza de la Astrobiología. In this work, ...

  10. The NASA Airborne Astronomy Program: A perspective on its contributions to science, technology, and education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larson, Harold P.

    1995-01-01

    The scientific, educational, and instrumental contributions from NASA's airborne observatories are deduced from the program's publication record (789 citations, excluding abstracts, involving 580 authors at 128 institutions in the United States and abroad between 1967-1990).

  11. 78 FR 20359 - NASA Advisory Council; Technology and Innovation Committee; Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-04-04

    ... ethics briefing. DATES: Thursday, April 18, 2013, 8:00 a.m. to 3:15 p.m., Local Time. ADDRESSES: NASA... information (number, country, expiration date); employer/affiliation information (name of institution, address...

  12. NASA Langley Research Center outreach in astronautical education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duberg, J. E.

    1976-01-01

    The Langley Research Center has traditionally maintained an active relationship with the academic community, especially at the graduate level, to promote the Center's research program and to make graduate education available to its staff. Two new institutes at the Center - the Joint Institute for Acoustics and Flight Sciences, and the Institute for Computer Applications - are discussed. Both provide for research activity at the Center by university faculties. The American Society of Engineering Education Summer Faculty Fellowship Program and the NASA-NRC Postdoctoral Resident Research Associateship Program are also discussed.

  13. NASA Collaborative Design Processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Davey

    2017-01-01

    This is Block 1, the first evolution of the world's most powerful and versatile rocket, the Space Launch System, built to return humans to the area around the moon. Eventually, larger and even more powerful and capable configurations will take astronauts and cargo to Mars. On the sides of the rocket are the twin solid rocket boosters that provide more than 75 percent during liftoff and burn for about two minutes, after which they are jettisoned, lightening the load for the rest of the space flight. Four RS-25 main engines provide thrust for the first stage of the rocket. These are the world's most reliable rocket engines. The core stage is the main body of the rocket and houses the fuel for the RS-25 engines, liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen, and the avionics, or "brain" of the rocket. The core stage is all new and being manufactured at NASA's "rocket factory," Michoud Assembly Facility near New Orleans. The Launch Vehicle Stage Adapter, or LVSA, connects the core stage to the Interim Cryogenic Propulsion Stage. The Interim Cryogenic Propulsion Stage, or ICPS, uses one RL-10 rocket engine and will propel the Orion spacecraft on its deep-space journey after first-stage separation. Finally, the Orion human-rated spacecraft sits atop the massive Saturn V-sized launch vehicle. Managed out of Johnson Space Center in Houston, Orion is the first spacecraft in history capable of taking humans to multiple destinations within deep space. 2) Each element of the SLS utilizes collaborative design processes to achieve the incredible goal of sending human into deep space. Early phases are focused on feasibility and requirements development. Later phases are focused on detailed design, testing, and operations. There are 4 basic phases typically found in each phase of development.

  14. NASA Robotic Neurosurgery Testbed

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mah, Robert

    1997-01-01

    The detection of tissue interface (e.g., normal tissue, cancer, tumor) has been limited clinically to tactile feedback, temperature monitoring, and the use of a miniature ultrasound probe for tissue differentiation during surgical operations, In neurosurgery, the needle used in the standard stereotactic CT or MRI guided brain biopsy provides no information about the tissue being sampled. The tissue sampled depends entirely upon the accuracy with which the localization provided by the preoperative CT or MRI scan is translated to the intracranial biopsy site. In addition, no information about the tissue being traversed by the needle (e.g., a blood vessel) is provided. Hemorrhage due to the biopsy needle tearing a blood vessel within the brain is the most devastating complication of stereotactic CT/MRI guided brain biopsy. A robotic neurosurgery testbed has been developed at NASA Ames Research Center as a spin-off of technologies from space, aeronautics and medical programs. The invention entitled "Robotic Neurosurgery Leading to Multimodality Devices for Tissue Identification" is nearing a state ready for commercialization. The devices will: 1) improve diagnostic accuracy and precision of general surgery, with near term emphasis on stereotactic brain biopsy, 2) automate tissue identification, with near term emphasis on stereotactic brain biopsy, to permit remote control of the procedure, and 3) reduce morbidity for stereotactic brain biopsy. The commercial impact from this work is the potential development of a whole new generation of smart surgical tools to increase the safety, accuracy and efficiency of surgical procedures. Other potential markets include smart surgical tools for tumor ablation in neurosurgery, general exploratory surgery, prostate cancer surgery, and breast cancer surgery.

  15. NASA's Universe of Learning: Engaging Learners in Discovery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cominsky, L.; Smith, D. A.; Lestition, K.; Greene, M.; Squires, G.

    2016-12-01

    NASA's Universe of Learning is one of 27 competitively awarded education programs selected by NASA's Science Mission Directorate (SMD) to enable scientists and engineers to more effectively engage with learners of all ages. The NASA's Universe of Learning program is created through a partnership between the Space Telescope Science Institute, Chandra X-ray Center, IPAC at Caltech, Jet Propulsion Laboratory Exoplanet Exploration Program, and Sonoma State University. The program will connect the scientists, engineers, science, technology and adventure of NASA Astrophysics with audience needs, proven infrastructure, and a network of over 500 partners to advance the objectives of SMD's newly restructured education program. The multi-institutional team will develop and deliver a unified, consolidated suite of education products, programs, and professional development offerings that spans the full spectrum of NASA Astrophysics, including the Exoplanet Exploration theme. Program elements include enabling educational use of Astrophysics mission data and offering participatory experiences; creating multimedia and immersive experiences; designing exhibits and community programs; providing professional development for pre-service educators, undergraduate instructors, and informal educators; and, producing resources for special needs and underserved/underrepresented audiences. This presentation will provide an overview of the program and process for mapping discoveries to products and programs for informal, lifelong, and self-directed learning environments.

  16. Update on NASA Microelectronics Activities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Label, Kenneth A.; Sampson, Michael J.; Casey, Megan; Lauenstein, Jean-Marie

    2017-01-01

    Mission Statement: The NASA Electronic Parts and Packaging (NEPP) Program provides NASA's leadership for developing and maintaining guidance for the screening, qualification, test. and usage of EEE parts by NASA as well as in collaboration with other government Agencies and industry. NASA Space Technology Mission Directorate (STMD) "STMD rapidly develops, demonstrates, and infuses revolutionary, high-payoff technologies through transparent, collaborative partnerships, expanding the boundaries of the aerospace enterprise." Mission Statement: The Space Environments Testing Management Office (SETMO) will identify, prioritize, and manage a select suite of Agency key capabilities/assets that are deemed to be essential to the future needs of NASA or the nation, including some capabilities that lack an adequate business base over the budget horizon. NESC mission is to perform value-added independent testing, analysis, and assessments of NASA's high-risk projects to ensure safety and mission success. NASA Space Environments and Avionics Fellows as well as Radiation and EEE Parts Community of Practice (CoP) leads.

  17. Through the Eyes of NASA: NASA's 2017 Eclipse Education Progam

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayo, L.

    2017-12-01

    Over the last three years, NASA has been developing plans to bring the August 21st total solar eclipse to the nation, "as only NASA can", leveraging its considerable space assets, technology, scientists, and its unmatched commitment to science education. The eclipse, long anticipated by many groups, represents the largest Big Event education program that NASA has ever undertaken. It is the latest in a long string of successful Big Event international celebrations going back two decades including both transits of Venus, three solar eclipses, solar maximum, and mission events such as the MSL/Curiosity landing on Mars, and the launch of the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) to name a few. This talk will detail NASA's program development methods, strategic partnerships, and strategies for using this celestial event to engage the nation and improve overall science literacy.

  18. NASA Applications of Molecular Nanotechnology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Globus, Al; Bailey, David; Han, Jie; Jaffe, Richard; Levit, Creon; Merkle, Ralph; Srivastava, Deepak

    1998-01-01

    Laboratories throughout the world are rapidly gaining atomically precise control over matter. As this control extends to an ever wider variety of materials, processes and devices, opportunities for applications relevant to NASA's missions will be created. This document surveys a number of future molecular nanotechnology capabilities of aerospace interest. Computer applications, launch vehicle improvements, and active materials appear to be of particular interest. We also list a number of applications for each of NASA's enterprises. If advanced molecular nanotechnology can be developed, almost all of NASA's endeavors will be radically improved. In particular, a sufficiently advanced molecular nanotechnology can arguably bring large scale space colonization within our grasp.

  19. NASA/JSC ISSLive!

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, Philip D.; Price, Jennifer B.; Khan, Ahmed; Severance, Mark T.

    2011-01-01

    Just 150 miles above us, the International Space Station (ISS) is orbiting. Each day, the astronauts on board perform a variety of activities from exercise, science experiments, and maintenance. Yet, many on the ground do not know about these daily activities. National Aeronautics Space Agency/ Johnson Space Center (NASA/JSC) innovation creation ISSLive! - an education project - is working to bridge this knowledge gap with traditional education channels such as schools, but also non-traditional channels with the non-technical everyday public. ISSLive! provides a website that seamlessly integrates planning and telemetry data, video feeds, 3D models, and iOS and android applications. Through the site, users are able to view astronauts daily schedules, in plain English alongside the original data. As an example, when an astronaut is working with a science experiment, a user will be able to read about the activity and for more detailed activities follow provided links to view more information all integrated into the same site. Live telemetry data from a predefined set can also be provided alongside the activities. For users to learn more, 3D models of the external and internal parts of the ISS are available, allowing users to explore the station and even select sensors, such as temperature, and view a real-time chart of the data. Even ground operations are modeled with a 3D mission control center, providing users information on the various flight control disciplines and showing live data that they would be monitoring. Some unique activities are also highlighted and have dedicated spaces to explore in more detail. Education is the focus of ISSLive!, even from the beginning when university students participated in the development process as part of their master s projects. Focus groups at a Houston school showed interest in the project and excitement towards including ISSLive! in their classroom. Through this inclusion, students' knowledge can be assessed with projects

  20. Atmosphere of Freedom: Sixty Years at the NASA Ames Research Center

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bugos, Glenn E.; Launius, Roger (Technical Monitor)

    2000-01-01

    Throughout Ames History, four themes prevail: a commitment to hiring the best people; cutting-edge research tools; project management that gets things done faster, better and cheaper; and outstanding research efforts that serve the scientific professions and the nation. More than any other NASA Center, Ames remains shaped by its origins in the NACA (National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics). Not that its missions remain the same. Sure, Ames still houses the world's greatest collection of wind tunnels and simulation facilities, its aerodynamicists remain among the best in the world, and pilots and engineers still come for advice on how to build better aircraft. But that is increasingly part of Ames' past. Ames people have embraced two other missions for its future. First, intelligent systems and information science will help NASA use new tools in supercomputing, networking, telepresence and robotics. Second, astrobiology will explore lore the prospects for life on Earth and beyond. Both new missions leverage Ames long-standing expertise in computation and in the life sciences, as well as its relations with the computing and biotechnology firms working in the Silicon Valley community that has sprung up around the Center. Rather than the NACA missions, it is the NACA culture that still permeates Ames. The Ames way of research management privileges the scientists and engineers working in the laboratories. They work in an atmosphere of freedom, laced with the expectation of integrity and responsibility. Ames researchers are free to define their research goals and define how they contribute to the national good. They are expected to keep their fingers on the pulse of their disciplines, to be ambitious yet frugal in organizing their efforts, and to always test their theories in the laboratory or in the field. Ames' leadership ranks, traditionally, are cultivated within this scientific community. Rather than manage and supervise these researchers, Ames leadership merely

  1. Building effective learning experiences around visualizations: NASA Eyes on the Solar System and Infiniscope

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tamer, A. J. J.; Anbar, A. D.; Elkins-Tanton, L. T.; Klug Boonstra, S.; Mead, C.; Swann, J. L.; Hunsley, D.

    2017-12-01

    Advances in scientific visualization and public access to data have transformed science outreach and communication, but have yet to realize their potential impacts in the realm of education. Computer-based learning is a clear bridge between visualization and education, but creating high-quality learning experiences that leverage existing visualizations requires close partnerships among scientists, technologists, and educators. The Infiniscope project is working to foster such partnerships in order to produce exploration-driven learning experiences around NASA SMD data and images, leveraging the principles of ETX (Education Through eXploration). The visualizations inspire curiosity, while the learning design promotes improved reasoning skills and increases understanding of space science concepts. Infiniscope includes both a web portal to host these digital learning experiences, as well as a teaching network of educators using and modifying these experiences. Our initial efforts to enable student discovery through active exploration of the concepts associated with Small Worlds, Kepler's Laws, and Exoplanets led us to develop our own visualizations at Arizona State University. Other projects focused on Astrobiology and Mars geology led us to incorporate an immersive Virtual Field Trip platform into the Infiniscope portal in support of virtual exploration of scientifically significant locations. Looking to apply ETX design practices with other visualizations, our team at Arizona State partnered with the Jet Propulsion Lab to integrate the web-based version of NASA Eyes on the Eclipse within Smart Sparrow's digital learning platform in a proof-of-concept focused on the 2017 Eclipse. This goes a step beyond the standard features of "Eyes" by wrapping guided exploration, focused on a specific learning goal into standards-aligned lesson built around the visualization, as well as its distribution through Infiniscope and it's digital teaching network. Experience from this

  2. The NASA Space Life Sciences Training Program: Accomplishments Since 2013

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rask, Jon; Gibbs, Kristina; Ray, Hami; Bridges, Desireemoi; Bailey, Brad; Smith, Jeff; Sato, Kevin; Taylor, Elizabeth

    2017-01-01

    The NASA Space Life Sciences Training Program (SLSTP) provides undergraduate students entering their junior or senior years with professional experience in space life science disciplines. This challenging ten-week summer program is held at NASA Ames Research Center. The primary goal of the program is to train the next generation of scientists and engineers, enabling NASA to meet future research and development challenges in the space life sciences. Students work closely with NASA scientists and engineers on cutting-edge research and technology development. In addition to conducting hands-on research and presenting their findings, SLSTP students attend technical lectures given by experts on a wide range of topics, tour NASA research facilities, participate in leadership and team building exercises, and complete a group project. For this presentation, we will highlight program processes, accomplishments, goals, and feedback from alumni and mentors since 2013. To date, 49 students from 41 different academic institutions, 9 staffers, and 21 mentors have participated in the program. The SLSTP is funded by Space Biology, which is part of the Space Life and Physical Sciences Research and Application division of NASA's Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate. The SLSTP is managed by the Space Biology Project within the Science Directorate at Ames Research Center.

  3. NASA and Public Libraries: Enhancing STEM Literacy in Underserved Communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dusenbery, P.; LaConte, K.; Harold, J. B.; Randall, C.

    2016-12-01

    NASA research programs are helping humanity understand the origin and evolution of galaxies, stars, and planets, and defining the conditions necessary to support life beyond Earth. The Space Science Institute's (SSI) National Center for Interactive Learning (NCIL) was recently funded by NASA`s Science Mission Directorate (SMD) to develop and implement a project called NASA@ My Library: A National Earth and Space Science Initiative That Connects NASA, Public Libraries and Their Communities. As places that offer their services for free, public libraries have become the "public square" by providing a place where members of a community can gather for information, educational programming, and policy discussions. Libraries are developing new ways to engage their patrons in STEM learning, and NCIL's STAR Library Education Network (STAR_Net) has been supporting their efforts for the last eight years, including through a vibrant community of practice that serves both librarians and STEM professionals. Project stakeholders include public library staff, state libraries, the earth and space science education community at NASA, subject matter experts, and informal science educators. The project will leverage high-impact SMD and library events to catalyze partnerships through dissemination of SMD assets and professional development. It will also develop frameworks for public libraries to increase STEM interest pathways in their communities (with supports for reaching underserved audiences). This presentation will summarize the key activities and expected outcomes of the 5-year project.

  4. Introduction to NASA Symposium on Productivity and Quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braunstein, David

    1984-01-01

    The discussions will concentrate on white-collar organizational issues common to large organizations. The program will address a number of management issues for improving our nation's productivity and quality, and therefore its competitive position. executives have contributed their time to share /their experience with you. In addition, the American Institute of Astronautics & Aeronautics corporate members have helped to organize the sessions. I am most grateful for this support. The NASA Administrator has set the goal for NASA to become a leader in productivity and quality.

  5. NASA Risk Management Handbook. Version 1.0

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dezfuli, Homayoon; Benjamin, Allan; Everett, Christopher; Maggio, Gaspare; Stamatelatos, Michael; Youngblood, Robert; Guarro, Sergio; Rutledge, Peter; Sherrard, James; Smith, Curtis; hide

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this handbook is to provide guidance for implementing the Risk Management (RM) requirements of NASA Procedural Requirements (NPR) document NPR 8000.4A, Agency Risk Management Procedural Requirements [1], with a specific focus on programs and projects, and applying to each level of the NASA organizational hierarchy as requirements flow down. This handbook supports RM application within the NASA systems engineering process, and is a complement to the guidance contained in NASA/SP-2007-6105, NASA Systems Engineering Handbook [2]. Specifically, this handbook provides guidance that is applicable to the common technical processes of Technical Risk Management and Decision Analysis established by NPR 7123.1A, NASA Systems Engineering Process and Requirements [3]. These processes are part of the \\Systems Engineering Engine. (Figure 1) that is used to drive the development of the system and associated work products to satisfy stakeholder expectations in all mission execution domains, including safety, technical, cost, and schedule. Like NPR 7123.1A, NPR 8000.4A is a discipline-oriented NPR that intersects with product-oriented NPRs such as NPR 7120.5D, NASA Space Flight Program and Project Management Requirements [4]; NPR 7120.7, NASA Information Technology and Institutional Infrastructure Program and Project Management Requirements [5]; and NPR 7120.8, NASA Research and Technology Program and Project Management Requirements [6]. In much the same way that the NASA Systems Engineering Handbook is intended to provide guidance on the implementation of NPR 7123.1A, this handbook is intended to provide guidance on the implementation of NPR 8000.4A. 1.2 Scope and Depth This handbook provides guidance for conducting RM in the context of NASA program and project life cycles, which produce derived requirements in accordance with existing systems engineering practices that flow down through the NASA organizational hierarchy. The guidance in this handbook is not meant

  6. Industrial and Systems Engineering Applications in NASA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shivers, Charles H.

    2006-01-01

    A viewgraph presentation on the many applications of Industrial and Systems Engineering used for safe NASA missions is shown. The topics include: 1) NASA Information; 2) Industrial Engineering; 3) Systems Engineering; and 4) Major NASA Programs.

  7. NASA 3D Models: Cassini

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Cassini spacecraft from SPACE rendering package, built by Michael Oberle under NASA contract at JPL. Includes orbiter only, Huygens probe detached. Accurate except...

  8. NASA: Investing in Our Future

    Science.gov (United States)

    1992-01-01

    A short explanation of NASA's accomplishments and goals are discussed in this video. Space Station Freedom, lunar bases, manned Mars mission, and robotic spacecrafts to explore other worlds are briefly described.

  9. NASA 3D Models: Aqua

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Aqua, Latin for water, is a NASA Earth Science satellite mission named for the large amount of information that the mission is collecting about the Earth's water...

  10. NASA 3D Models: Terra

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — NASA launched the Earth Observing System's flagship satellite Terra, named for Earth, on December 18, 1999. Terra has been collecting data about Earth's changing...

  11. NASA 3D Models: TRMM

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) is a joint mission between NASA and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) designed to monitor and study...

  12. NASA 3D Models: SORCE

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Solar Radiation and Climate Experiment (SORCE) is a NASA-sponsored satellite mission that is providing state-of-the-art measurements of incoming x-ray,...

  13. NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The NTRS is a valuable resource for researchers, students, educators, and the public to access NASA's current and historical technical literature and engineering...

  14. NASA's Plan for SDLS Testing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bailey, Brandon

    2015-01-01

    The Space Data Link Security (SDLS) Protocol is a Consultative Committee for Space Data Systems (CCSDS) standard which extends the known Data Link protocols to secure data being sent over a space link by providing confidentiality and integrity services. This plan outlines the approach by National Aeronautics Space Administration (NASA) in performing testing of the SDLS protocol using a prototype based on an existing NASA missions simulator.

  15. NASA's "Eyes" Focus on Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hussey, K.

    2016-12-01

    NASA's "Eyes on…" suite of products continues to grow in capability and popularity. The "Eyes on the Earth", "Eyes on the Solar System" and "Eyes on Exoplanets" real-time, 3D interactive visualization products have proven themselves as highly effective demonstration and communication tools for NASA's Earth and Space Science missions. This presentation will give a quick look at the latest updates to the "Eyes" suite plus what is being done to make them tools for STEM Education.

  16. Mineralogy of Surface Serpentinite Outcrops in the Coast Range Ophiolite: Implications for the Deep Biosphere and Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mccann, A. R.; Cardace, D.; Carnevale, D.; Ehlmann, B. L.

    2011-12-01

    Range Ophiolite, along with aerial-view maps, which will be compared with imagery and data for recently confirmed serpentinite exposures in the Nili Fossae region of the Martian surface. A summary table of terrestrial microbes (and their metabolisms) detected in serpentinite groundwaters will be provided, to add specificity to candidate subterranean life forms on Mars, be they active presently or in the planet's history. Ehlmann et al. 2010. GRL 37:1-5 Schulte et al. 2006. Astrobiology 6(2):364-376

  17. Reviews in Modern Astronomy 28: From the First Quasars to Life-Bearing Planets - From Accretion Physics to Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berlepsch, Regina v.

    2016-07-01

    The current issue of AN is Volume 28 of the Reviews in Modern Astronomy and presents the Karl Schwarzschild Award Lecture, the Ludwig Bierman n Award Lecture and the Doctoral Thesis Award Lecture given at the 88th Annual International Scientific Meeting of the Astronomische Gesellschaft held in Kiel, Germany, September 14-18, 2015. It was the fifth time that Kiel hosted a meeting of the AG, the first one was in 1887. In 2015 the fall meeting was a part of the celebrations of the 350th anniversary of the Christiana Albertina University Kiel in 1665. For astronomers around the globe, the astrophysical group is well known for the Kieler Schule and its fundamental contributions to the physics of stellar atmospheres. Based on the work by Albrecht Unsöld during his tenure of 41 years as active researcher and lecturer (and many more after becoming emeritus), the quantitative analysis of stellar atmospheres and the reliable determination of chemical abundances is nowadays a cornerstone of modern astrophysics. Even more, it is of ground-laying importance for the whole field, from the characterization of exoplanets and their host stars to the properties of galaxies at cosmic dawn. The meeting was guided by the theme "From the First Quasars to Life-Bearing Planets -- From Accretion Physics to Astrobiology". The meeting was attended by almost 300 participants from around the world. The Karl Schwarzschild Medal 2015 of the Astronomische Gesellschaft was awarded to Professor Immo Appenzeller, Heidelberg. His lecture with the title "Astronomical technology -- the past and the future" opened the meeting. The talk presented by the Ludwig Biermann Award winner 2015, Dr. Ivan Minchev, Potsdam, dealt with the topic "Constraining the Milky Way assembly history with Galactic Archaeology". The Doctoral Thesis Award 2015 was awarded to Dr. Cornelia Müller (Würzburg). In her lecture she discussed the subject "Multiwavelength and parsec-scale properties of extragalactic Jets". The AG

  18. A Conspicuous Clay Ovoid in Nakhla: Evidence for Subsurface Hydrothermal Alteration on Mars with Implications for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haigh, Sarah; Lyon, Ian

    2014-01-01

    layer of iron oxides/hydroxides. Carbonates, halite, and sulfates were deposited last within interstitial spaces and along fractures. Among three plausible competing hypotheses here, this particular abiotic scenario is considered to be the most reasonable explanation for the formation of the ovoid structure in Nakhla, and although compelling evidence for a biotic origin is lacking, it is evident that the martian subsurface contains niche environments where life could develop. Key Words: Biomorph—Clays—Search for life (biosignatures)—Martian meteorites—Hydrothermal systems. Astrobiology 14, 651–693. PMID:25046549

  19. A NASA-wide approach toward cost-effective, high-quality software through reuse

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheper, Charlotte O. (Editor); Smith, Kathryn A. (Editor)

    1993-01-01

    NASA Langley Research Center sponsored the second Workshop on NASA Research in Software Reuse on May 5-6, 1992 at the Research Triangle Park, North Carolina. The workshop was hosted by the Research Triangle Institute. Participants came from the three NASA centers, four NASA contractor companies, two research institutes and the Air Force's Rome Laboratory. The purpose of the workshop was to exchange information on software reuse tool development, particularly with respect to tool needs, requirements, and effectiveness. The participants presented the software reuse activities and tools being developed and used by their individual centers and programs. These programs address a wide range of reuse issues. The group also developed a mission and goals for software reuse within NASA. This publication summarizes the presentations and the issues discussed during the workshop.

  20. Institute for Computational Mechanics in Propulsion (ICOMP). 10

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keith, Theo G., Jr. (Editor); Balog, Karen (Editor); Povinelli, Louis A. (Editor)

    1996-01-01

    The Institute for Computational Mechanics in Propulsion (ICOMP) is operated by the Ohio Aerospace Institute (OAI) and funded under a cooperative agreement by the NASA Lewis Research Center in Cleveland, Ohio. The purpose of ICOMP is to develop techniques to improve problem-solving capabilities in all aspects of computational mechanics related to propulsion. This report describes the activities at ICOUP during 1995.

  1. Teacher Enhancement Institute

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marshall-Bradley, Tina

    1994-01-01

    During the 1980's, a period of intense concern over educational quality in the United States, few indicators of U.S. student achievement garnered the interest of policy makers and pundits as successfully as the results of international testing in mathematics and science. This concern was so great that as a part of the Goals 2000 initiative, President George Bush indicated that 'By the year 2000, U.S. students should be first in the world in mathematics and science.' The Clinton Administration is placing a major emphasis, not only on rigorous academic standards and creating a new system for assessing students' progress, but also including professional development as a major focus. The argument being that teachers need more sustained, intensive training to prepare them to teach to higher standards. Executive order 12821 mandates that national laboratories 'assist in the mathematics and science education of our Nation's students, teachers, parents and the public by establishing programs at their agency to provide for training elementary and secondary school teachers to improve their knowledge of mathematics and science'. These and other issues led to the development of ideas for a project that addresses the need for excellence in mathematics, science and technology instruction. In response to these initiatives the NASA/LaRC Teacher Enhancement Institute was proposed. The TEI incorporated systemic reform perspectives, enhanced content knowledge for teachers, and teacher preparation. Emphasis was also placed on recruiting those educators who teach in impoverished urban school districts with at-risk student populations who have been traditionally under represented in science, mathematics, technology and engineering. Participants in the Teacher Enhancement Institute were 37 teachers from grades K-8, teaching in Region 2 in the state of Virginia, as well as 2 preservice teachers from Norfolk State University and one teacher from Dublin, Virginia, where a Science

  2. Tissue grown in space in NASA Bioreactor

    Science.gov (United States)

    2001-01-01

    Dr. Lisa E. Freed of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and her colleagues have reported that initially disc-like specimens tend to become spherical in space, demonstrating that tissues can grow and differentiate into distinct structures in microgravity. The Mir Increment 3 (Sept. 16, 1996 - Jan. 22, 1997) samples were smaller, more spherical, and mechanically weaker than Earth-grown control samples. These results demonstrate the feasibility of microgravity tissue engineering and may have implications for long human space voyages and for treating musculoskeletal disorders on earth. Final samples from Mir and Earth appeared histologically cartilaginous throughout their entire cross sections (5-8 mm thick), with the exception of fibrous outer capsules. Constructs grown on Earth (A) appeared to have a more organized extracellular matrix with more uniform collagen orientation as compared with constructs grown on Mir (B), but the average collagen fiber diameter was similar in the two groups (22 +- 2 nm) and comparable to that previously reported for developing articular cartilage. Randomly oriented collagen in Mir samples would be consistent with previous reports that microgravity disrupts fibrillogenesis. These are transmission electron micrographs of constructs from Mir (A) and Earth (B) groups at magnifications of x3,500 and x120,000 (Inset). The work is sponsored by NASA's Office of Biological and Physical Research. The bioreactor is managed by the Biotechnology Cell Science Program at NASA's Johnson Space Center (JSC). NASA-sponsored bioreactor research has been instrumental in helping scientists to better understand normal and cancerous tissue development. In cooperation with the medical community, the bioreactor design is being used to prepare better models of human colon, prostate, breast and ovarian tumors. Credit: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

  3. Intentional Collaboration & Innovation Spaces at NASA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, David W.

    2014-01-01

    Collaboration and Innovation (C&I) are extremely popular terms in corporate jargon, and institutions with reputations for creativity often have clever and fun spaces set aside for hatching ideas and developing products or services. In and of themselves, a room full of "collaboration furniture" and electronics can't make C&I happen, any more than oil makes a gas or diesel engine run. As with the engine, though, quality lubrication is a huge factor in the smooth operation, power, and longevity of C&I activity. This paper describes spaces deliberately set up at numerous NASA field centers to support collaborative and creative thinking and processes. (Sometimes support is not so much a matter of doing things to spark discussion as it is removing constraints imposed by traditional settings and making information sharing as easy as possible.) Some spaces are rooms or suites dedicated to C&I, with significant electronic support and/or intentional lack thereof (to emphasize the human element). Others are small, comfortable "roosting places" that invite conversations of opportunity. Descriptions include the sponsoring organization, underlying goals and philosophies, lessons learned, and opportunities to excel. There is discussion about how such areas might interconnect within centers, across NASA, and with external entities using current technology and what tools and approaches may be in our future.

  4. Recent Progress on Sonic Boom Research at NASA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loubeau, Alexandra

    2012-01-01

    Sonic boom research conducted at NASA through the Supersonics Project of the Fundamental Aeronautics Program is oriented toward understanding the potential impact of sonic boom noise on communities from new low-boom supersonic aircraft designs. Encompassing research in atmospheric propagation, structural response, and human response, NASA research contributes to knowledge in key areas needed to support development of a new noise-based standard for supersonic aircraft certification. Partnerships with several industry, government, and academic institutions have enabled the recent execution of several acoustic field studies on sonic booms. An overview of recent activities funded by NASA includes: focus boom model development and experimental validation, field experiments of structural transmission of sonic booms into large buildings, and low boom community response testing.

  5. The 2017 Total Solar Eclipse: Through the Eyes of NASA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayo, Louis; NASA Goddard Heliophysics Education Consortium

    2017-10-01

    The August 21st, 2017 Total Solar Eclipse Across America provided a unique opportunity to teach event-based science to nationwide audiences. NASA spent over three years planning space and Earth science education programs for informal audiences, undergraduate institutions, and life long learners to bring this celestial event to the public through the eyes of NASA. This talk outlines how NASA used its unique assets including mission scientists and engineers, space based assets, citizen science, educational technology, science visualization, and its wealth of science and technology partners to bring the eclipse to the country through multimedia, cross-discipline science activities, curricula, and media programing. Audience reach, impact, and lessons learned are detailed. Plans for similar events in 2018 and beyond are outlined.

  6. NASA Operational Environment Team (NOET): NASA's key to environmental technology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, Beth

    1993-01-01

    NASA has stepped forward to face the environmental challenge to eliminate the use of Ozone-Layer Depleting Substances (OLDS) and to reduce our Hazardous Air Pollutants (HAP) by 50 percent in 1995. These requirements have been issued by the Clean Air Act, the Montreal Protocol, and various other legislative acts. A proactive group, the NASA Operational Environment Team or NOET, received its charter in April 1992 and was tasked with providing a network through which replacement activities and development experiences can be shared. This is a NASA-wide team which supports the research and development community by sharing information both in person and via a computerized network, assisting in specification and standard revisions, developing cleaner propulsion systems, and exploring environmentally-compliant alternatives to current processes.

  7. The NASA Plan: To award eight percent of prime and subcontracts to socially and economically disadvantaged businesses

    Science.gov (United States)

    1990-01-01

    It is NASA's intent to provide small disadvantaged businesses, including women-owned, historically black colleges and universities and minority education institutions the maximum practicable opportunity to receive a fair proportion of NASA prime and subcontracted awards. Annually, NASA will establish socioeconomic procurement goals including small disadvantaged business goals, with a target of reaching the eight percent level by the end of FY 1994. The NASA Associate Administrators, who are responsible for the programs at the various NASA Centers, will be held accountable for full implementation of the socioeconomic procurement plans. Various aspects of this plan, including its history, are discussed.

  8. The NASA risk management program

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Buchbinder, B.; Philipson, L.L.

    1989-01-01

    This paper reports that the NASA Risk Management Program has been established to ensure the appropriate application of risk-based procedures in support of the elimination, reduction, or acceptance of significant safety risks of concern in NASA. The term appropriate is emphasized, in that the particular procedures applied to each given risk are to reflect its character and prioritized importance, the technological and economic feasibility of its treatment. A number of key documents have been produced in support of this implementation. Databases, risk analysis tools, and risk communication procedures requisite to the execution of the risk management functions also are being developed or documented. Several risk management applications have been made and a comprehensive application to a major new NASA program is underway. This paper summarizes the development and current status of the NASA Risk Management Program. Some principal actions that have been carried out in NASA in consonance with the program are noted particularly, and views are presented on the program's likely future directions

  9. NASA Microgravity Materials Science Conference

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gillies, D. C. (Compiler); McCauley, D. E. (Compiler)

    1999-01-01

    The Microgravity Materials Science Conference was held July 14-16, 1998 at the Von Braun Center in Huntsville, AL. It was organized by the Microgravity Materials Science Discipline Working Group, sponsored by the Microgravity Research Division at NASA Headquarters, and hosted by the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center and the Alliance for Microgravity Materials Science and Applications. It was the third NASA conference of this type in the microgravity materials science discipline. The microgravity science program sponsored approximately 125 investigations and 100 principal investigators in FY98, almost all of whom made oral or poster presentations at this conference. The conference's purpose was to inform the materials science community of research opportunities in reduced gravity in preparation for a NASA Research Announcement scheduled for release in late 1998 by the Microgravity Research Division at NASA Headquarters. The conference was aimed at materials science researchers from academia, industry, and government. A tour of the Marshall Space Flight Center microgravity research facilities was held on July 16, 1998. This volume is comprised of the research reports submitted by the principal investigators after the conference.

  10. Latest Changes to NASA's Laser Communication Relay Demonstration Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Bernard L.; Israel, David J.; Vithlani, Seema K.

    2018-01-01

    Over the last couple of years, NASA has been making changes to the Laser Communications Relay Demonstration Project (LCRD), a joint project between NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC), the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology (JPL), and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Lincoln Laboratory (MIT/LL). The changes made makes LCRD more like a future Earth relay system that has both high speed optical and radio frequency links. This will allow LCRD to demonstrate a more detailed concept of operations for a future operational mission critical Earth relay. LCRD is expected to launch in June 2019 and is expected to be followed a couple of years later with a prototype user terminal on the International Space Station. LCRD's architecture will allow it to serve as a testbed in space and this paper will provide an update of its planned capabilities and experiments.

  11. Arsenic, Anaerobes, and Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stolz, J. F.; Oremland, R. S.; Switzer Blum, J.; Hoeft, S. E.; Baesman, S. M.; Bennett, S.; Miller, L. G.; Kulp, T. R.; Saltikov, C.

    2013-12-01

    Arsenic is an element best known for its highly poisonous nature, so it is not something one would associate with being a well-spring for life. Yet discoveries made over the past two decades have delineated that not only are some microbes resistant to arsenic, but that this element's primary redox states can be exploited to conserve energy and support prokaryotic growth ('arsenotrophy') in the absence of oxygen. Hence, arsenite [As(III)] can serve as an electron donor for chemo- or photo-autotrophy while arsenate [As(V)] will serve as an electron acceptor for chemo-heterotrophs and chemo-autotrophs. The phylogenetic diversity of these microbes is broad, encompassing many individual species from diverse taxonomic groups in the Domain Bacteria, with fewer representatives in the Domain Archaea. Speculation with regard to the evolutionary origins of the key functional genes in anaerobic arsenic transformations (arrA and arxA) and aerobic oxidation (aioB) has led to a disputation as to which gene and function is the most ancient and whether arsenic metabolism extended back into the Archaean. Regardless of its origin, robust arsenic metabolism has been documented in extreme environments that are rich in their arsenic content, such as hot springs and especially hypersaline soda lakes associated with volcanic regions. Searles Lake, CA is an extreme, salt-saturated end member where vigorous arsenic metabolism occurs, but there is no detectable sulfate-reduction or methanogenesis. The latter processes are too weak bio-energetically to survive as compared with arsenotrophy, and are also highly sensitive to the abundance of borate ions present in these locales. These observations have implications with respect to the search for microbial life elsewhere in the Solar System where volcanic-like processes have been operative. Hence, because of the likelihood of encountering dense brines in the regolith of Mars (formed by evapo-concentration) or beneath the ice layers of Europa, Ganymede, Titan or Enceladus (formed by cryo-concentration), arsenotrophy could serve as a credible means of microbial energy conservation. Regrettably, the direct search for arsenic biomarkers is restricted because only one stable isotope exists (75As), which rules out the use of stable isotopic ratios in this regard. However, antimony oxyanions often co-occur with arsenic in the environment. Its two stable isotopes (123Sb and 121Sb) hold the potential to be exploited as a proxy isotopic biomarker for the fingerprint of microbial arsenotrophy. Whether such an approach is feasible needs to be investigated.

  12. Microbiological Methodology in Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abyzov, S. S.; Gerasimenko, L. M.; Hoover, R. B.; Mitskevich, I. N.; Mulyukin, A. L.; Poglazova, M. N.; Rozanov, A. Y.

    2005-01-01

    Searching for life in astromaterials to be delivered from the future missions to extraterrestrial bodies is undoubtedly related to studies of the properties and signatures of living microbial cells and microfossils on Earth. As model terrestrial analogs of Martian polar subsurface layers are often regarded the Antarctic glacier and Earth permafrost habitats where alive microbial cells preserved viability for millennia years due to entering the anabiotic state. For the future findings of viable microorganisms in samples from extraterrestrial objects, it is important to use a combined methodology that includes classical microbiological methods, plating onto nutrient media, direct epifluorescence and electron microscopy examinations, detection of the elemental composition of cells, radiolabeling techniques, PCR and FISH methods. Of great importance is to ensure authenticity of microorganisms (if any in studied samples) and to standardize the protocols used to minimize a risk of external contamination. Although the convincing evidence of extraterrestrial microbial life will may come from the discovery of living cells in astromaterials, biomorphs and microfossils must also be regarded as a target in search of life evidence bearing in mind a scenario that alive microorganisms had not be preserved and underwent mineralization. Under the laboratory conditions, processes that accompanied fossilization of cyanobacteria were reconstructed, and artificially produced cyanobacterial stromatolites resembles by their morphological properties those found in natural Earth habitats. Regarding the vital importance of distinguishing between biogenic and abiogenic signatures and between living and fossil microorganisms in analyzed samples, it is worthwhile to use some previously developed approaches based on electron microscopy examinations and analysis of elemental composition of biomorphs in situ and comparison with the analogous data obtained for laboratory microbial cultures and fossilized microorganisms. This communication will be focused on the analysis of our experience in working with ancient microorganisms and fossils and discussion of some issues that are crucial for development of the program for future finding of extraterrestrial life and its evidence.

  13. NASA Sounding Rocket Program Educational Outreach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosanova, G.

    2013-01-01

    Educational and public outreach is a major focus area for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). The NASA Sounding Rocket Program (NSRP) shares in the belief that NASA plays a unique and vital role in inspiring future generations to pursue careers in science, mathematics, and technology. To fulfill this vision, the NSRP engages in a variety of educator training workshops and student flight projects that provide unique and exciting hands-on rocketry and space flight experiences. Specifically, the Wallops Rocket Academy for Teachers and Students (WRATS) is a one-week tutorial laboratory experience for high school teachers to learn the basics of rocketry, as well as build an instrumented model rocket for launch and data processing. The teachers are thus armed with the knowledge and experience to subsequently inspire the students at their home institution. Additionally, the NSRP has partnered with the Colorado Space Grant Consortium (COSGC) to provide a "pipeline" of space flight opportunities to university students and professors. Participants begin by enrolling in the RockOn! Workshop, which guides fledgling rocketeers through the construction and functional testing of an instrumentation kit. This is then integrated into a sealed canister and flown on a sounding rocket payload, which is recovered for the students to retrieve and process their data post flight. The next step in the "pipeline" involves unique, user-defined RockSat-C experiments in a sealed canister that allow participants more independence in developing, constructing, and testing spaceflight hardware. These experiments are flown and recovered on the same payload as the RockOn! Workshop kits. Ultimately, the "pipeline" culminates in the development of an advanced, user-defined RockSat-X experiment that is flown on a payload which provides full exposure to the space environment (not in a sealed canister), and includes telemetry and attitude control capability. The RockOn! and Rock

  14. NASA Langley/CNU Distance Learning Programs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caton, Randall; Pinelli, Thomas E.

    2002-01-01

    NASA Langley Research Center and Christopher Newport University (CNU) provide, free to the public, distance learning programs that focus on math, science, and/or technology over a spectrum of education levels from K-adult. The effort started in 1997, and we currently have a suite of five distance-learning programs. We have around 450,000 registered educators and 12.5 million registered students in 60 countries. Partners and affiliates include the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA), the Aerospace Education Coordinating Committee (AECC), the Alliance for Community Media, the National Educational Telecommunications Association, Public Broadcasting System (PBS) affiliates, the NASA Learning Technologies Channel, the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM), the Council of the Great City Schools, Hampton City Public Schools, Sea World Adventure Parks, Busch Gardens, ePALS.com, and Riverdeep. Our mission is based on the "Horizon of Learning," a vision for inspiring learning across a continuum of educational experiences. The programs form a continuum of educational experiences for elementary youth through adult learners. The strategic plan for the programs will evolve to reflect evolving national educational needs, changes within NASA, and emerging system initiatives. Plans for each program component include goals, objectives, learning outcomes, and rely on sound business models. It is well documented that if technology is used properly it can be a powerful partner in education. Our programs employ both advances in information technology and in effective pedagogy to produce a broad range of materials to complement and enhance other educational efforts. Collectively, the goals of the five programs are to increase educational excellence; enhance and enrich the teaching of mathematics, science, and technology; increase scientific and technological literacy; and communicate the results of NASA discovery, exploration, innovation and research

  15. NASA's Astronant Family Support Office

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beven, Gary; Curtis, Kelly D.; Holland, Al W.; Sipes, Walter; VanderArk, Steve

    2014-01-01

    During the NASA-Mir program of the 1990s and due to the challenges inherent in the International Space Station training schedule and operations tempo, it was clear that a special focus on supporting families was a key to overall mission success for the ISS crewmembers pre-, in- and post-flight. To that end, in January 2001 the first Family Services Coordinator was hired by the Behavioral Health and Performance group at NASA JSC and matrixed from Medical Operations into the Astronaut Office's organization. The initial roles and responsibilities were driven by critical needs, including facilitating family communication during training deployments, providing mission-specific and other relevant trainings for spouses, serving as liaison for families with NASA organizations such as Medical Operations, NASA management and the Astronaut Office, and providing assistance to ensure success of an Astronaut Spouses Group. The role of the Family Support Office (FSO) has modified as the ISS Program matured and the needs of families changed. The FSO is currently an integral part of the Astronaut Office's ISS Operations Branch. It still serves the critical function of providing information to families, as well as being the primary contact for US and international partner families with resources at JSC. Since crews launch and return on Russian vehicles, the FSO has the added responsibility for coordinating with Flight Crew Operations, the families, and their guests for Soyuz launches, landings, and Direct Return to Houston post-flight. This presentation will provide a summary of the family support services provided for astronauts, and how they have changed with the Program and families the FSO serves. Considerations for future FSO services will be discussed briefly as NASA proposes one year missions and beyond ISS missions. Learning Objective: 1) Obtain an understanding of the reasons a Family Support Office was important for NASA. 2) Become familiar with the services provided for

  16. NASA Operational Environment Team (NOET) - NASA's key to environmental technology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, Beth

    1993-01-01

    NOET is a NASA-wide team which supports the research and development community by sharing information both in person and via a computerized network, assisting in specification and standard revisions, developing cleaner propulsion systems, and exploring environmentally compliant alternatives to current processes. NOET's structure, dissemination of materials, electronic information, EPA compliance, specifications and standards, and environmental research and development are discussed.

  17. NASA/DOD Aerospace Knowledge Diffusion Research Project. Report 6: The relationship between the use of US government technical reports by US aerospace engineers and scientists and selected institutional and sociometric variables. Ph.D. Thesis - Indiana Univ., Nov. 1990 No. 6

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinelli, Thomas E.

    1991-01-01

    The relationship between the use of U.S. government technical reports by U.S. aerospace engineers and scientists and selected institutional and sociometric variables was investigated. The methodology used for this study was survey research. Data were collected by means of a self-administered mail questionnaire. The approximately 34,000 members of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronauts (AIAA) served as the study population. The response rate for the survey was 70 percent. A dependent relationship was found to exist between the use of U.S. government technical reports and three of the institutional variables (academic preparation, years of professional aerospace work experience, and technical discipline). The use of U.S. government technical reports was found to be independent of all of the sociometric variables. The institutional variables best explain the use of U.S. government technical reports by U.S. aerospace engineers and scientists.

  18. NASA Software Engineering Benchmarking Effort

    Science.gov (United States)

    Godfrey, Sally; Rarick, Heather

    2012-01-01

    Benchmarking was very interesting and provided a wealth of information (1) We did see potential solutions to some of our "top 10" issues (2) We have an assessment of where NASA stands with relation to other aerospace/defense groups We formed new contacts and potential collaborations (1) Several organizations sent us examples of their templates, processes (2) Many of the organizations were interested in future collaboration: sharing of training, metrics, Capability Maturity Model Integration (CMMI) appraisers, instructors, etc. We received feedback from some of our contractors/ partners (1) Desires to participate in our training; provide feedback on procedures (2) Welcomed opportunity to provide feedback on working with NASA

  19. NASA Pathways Internship: Spring 2016

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alvarez, Oscar, III

    2016-01-01

    I was selected to contribute to the Data Systems and Handling Branch under the Avionics Flight Systems Division at the Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas. There I used my knowledge from school, as well as my job experience from the military, to help me comprehend my assigned project and contribute to it. With help from my mentors, supervisors, colleagues, and an excellent NASA work environment, I was able to learn, as well as accomplish, a lot towards my project. Not only did I understand more about embedded systems, microcontrollers, and low-level programming, I also was given the opportunity to explore the NASA community.

  20. NASA Technology Readiness Level Definitions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mcnamara, Karen M.

    2012-01-01

    This presentation will cover the basic Technology Readiness Level (TRL) definitions used by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and their specific wording. We will discuss how they are used in the NASA Project Life Cycle and their effectiveness in practice. We'll also discuss the recent efforts by the International Standards Organization (ISO) to develop a broadly acceptable set of TRL definitions for the international space community and some of the issues brought to light. This information will provide input for further discussion of the use of the TRL scale in manufacturing.

  1. NASA Technologies for Product Identification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schramm, Fred, Jr.

    2006-01-01

    Since 1975 bar codes on products at the retail counter have been accepted as the standard for entering product identity for price determination. Since the beginning of the 21st century, the Data Matrix symbol has become accepted as the bar code format that is marked directly on a part, assembly or product that is durable enough to identify that item for its lifetime. NASA began the studies for direct part marking Data Matrix symbols on parts during the Return to Flight activities after the Challenger Accident. Over the 20 year period that has elapsed since Challenger, a mountain of studies, analyses and focused problem solutions developed by and for NASA have brought about world changing results. NASA Technical Standard 6002 and NASA Handbook 6003 for Direct Part Marking Data Matrix Symbols on Aerospace Parts have formed the basis for most other standards on part marking internationally. NASA and its commercial partners have developed numerous products and methods that addressed the difficulties of collecting part identification in aerospace operations. These products enabled the marking of Data Matrix symbols in virtually every situation and the reading of symbols at great distances, severe angles, under paint and in the dark without a light. Even unmarkable delicate parts now have a process to apply a chemical mixture called NanocodesTM that can be converted to a Data Matrix. The accompanying intellectual property is protected by 10 patents, several of which are licensed. Direct marking Data Matrix on NASA parts virtually eliminates data entry errors and the number of parts that go through their life cycle unmarked, two major threats to sound configuration management and flight safety. NASA is said to only have people and stuff with information connecting them. Data Matrix is one of the most significant improvements since Challenger to the safety and reliability of that connection. This presentation highlights the accomplishments of NASA in its efforts to develop

  2. NASA FY 2000 Accountability Report

    Science.gov (United States)

    2000-01-01

    This Accountability Report consolidates reports required by various statutes and summarizes NASA's program accomplishments and its stewardship over budget and financial resources. It is a culmination of NASA's management process, which begins with mission definition and program planning, continues with the formulation and justification of budgets for the President and Congress, and ends with scientific and engineering program accomplishments. The report covers activities from October 1, 1999, through September 30, 2000. Achievements are highlighted in the Statement of the Administrator and summarized in the Report.

  3. NASA, Engineering, and Swarming Robots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leucht, Kurt

    2015-01-01

    This presentation is an introduction to NASA, to science and engineering, to biologically inspired robotics, and to the Swarmie ant-inspired robot project at KSC. This presentation is geared towards elementary school students, middle school students, and also high school students. This presentation is suitable for use in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) outreach events. The first use of this presentation will be on Oct 28, 2015 at Madison Middle School in Titusville, Florida where the author has been asked by the NASA-KSC Speakers Bureau to speak to the students about the Swarmie robots.

  4. NASA IMAGESEER: NASA IMAGEs for Science, Education, Experimentation and Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le Moigne, Jacqueline; Grubb, Thomas G.; Milner, Barbara C.

    2012-01-01

    A number of web-accessible databases, including medical, military or other image data, offer universities and other users the ability to teach or research new Image Processing techniques on relevant and well-documented data. However, NASA images have traditionally been difficult for researchers to find, are often only available in hard-to-use formats, and do not always provide sufficient context and background for a non-NASA Scientist user to understand their content. The new IMAGESEER (IMAGEs for Science, Education, Experimentation and Research) database seeks to address these issues. Through a graphically-rich web site for browsing and downloading all of the selected datasets, benchmarks, and tutorials, IMAGESEER provides a widely accessible database of NASA-centric, easy to read, image data for teaching or validating new Image Processing algorithms. As such, IMAGESEER fosters collaboration between NASA and research organizations while simultaneously encouraging development of new and enhanced Image Processing algorithms. The first prototype includes a representative sampling of NASA multispectral and hyperspectral images from several Earth Science instruments, along with a few small tutorials. Image processing techniques are currently represented with cloud detection, image registration, and map cover/classification. For each technique, corresponding data are selected from four different geographic regions, i.e., mountains, urban, water coastal, and agriculture areas. Satellite images have been collected from several instruments - Landsat-5 and -7 Thematic Mappers, Earth Observing-1 (EO-1) Advanced Land Imager (ALI) and Hyperion, and the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS). After geo-registration, these images are available in simple common formats such as GeoTIFF and raw formats, along with associated benchmark data.

  5. Ballooning for Biologists: Mission Essentials for Flying Experiments on Large NASA Balloons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, David J.; Sowa, Marianne

    2017-01-01

    Despite centuries of scientific balloon flights, only a handful of experiments have produced biologically-relevant results. Yet unlike orbital spaceflight, it is much faster and cheaper to conduct biology research with balloons, sending specimens to the near space environment of Earths stratosphere. Samples can be loaded the morning of a launch and sometimes returned to the laboratory within one day after flying. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) flies large, unmanned scientific balloons from all over the globe, with missions ranging from hours to weeks in duration. A payload in the middle portion of the stratosphere (approx. 35 km above sea level) will be exposed to an environment similar to the surface of Mars: temperatures generally around -36 C, atmospheric pressure at a thin 1 kPa, relative humidity levels <1%, and a harsh illumination of ultraviolet (UV) and cosmic radiation levels (about 100 W/sq m and 0.1 mGy/d, respectively) that can be obtained nowhere else on the surface of the Earth, including environmental chambers and particle accelerator facilities attempting to simulate space radiation effects. Considering the operational advantages of ballooning and the fidelity of space-like stressors in the stratosphere, researchers in aerobiology, astrobiology, and space biology can benefit from balloon flight experiments as an intermediary step on the extraterrestrial continuum (ground, low Earth orbit, and deep space studies). Our presentation targets biologists with no background or experience in scientific ballooning. We will provide an overview of large balloon operations, biology topics that can be uniquely addressed in the stratosphere, and a roadmap for developing payloads to fly with NASA.

  6. Overview of NASA's Universe of Learning: An Integrated Astrophysics STEM Learning and Literacy Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Denise; Lestition, Kathleen; Squires, Gordon; Biferno, Anya A.; Cominsky, Lynn; Manning, Colleen; NASA's Universe of Learning Team

    2018-01-01

    NASA's Universe of Learning creates and delivers science-driven, audience-driven resources and experiences designed to engage and immerse learners of all ages and backgrounds in exploring the universe for themselves. The project is the result of a unique partnership between the Space Telescope Science Institute, Caltech/IPAC, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, and Sonoma State University, and is one of 27 competitively-selected cooperative agreements within the NASA Science Mission Directorate STEM Activation program. The NASA's Universe of Learning team draws upon cutting-edge science and works closely with Subject Matter Experts (scientists and engineers) from across the NASA Astrophysics Physics of the Cosmos, Cosmic Origins, and Exoplanet Exploration themes. Together we develop and disseminate data tools and participatory experiences, multimedia and immersive experiences, exhibits and community programs, and professional learning experiences that meet the needs of our audiences, with attention to underserved and underrepresented populations. In doing so, scientists and educators from the partner institutions work together as a collaborative, integrated Astrophysics team to support NASA objectives to enable STEM education, increase scientific literacy, advance national education goals, and leverage efforts through partnerships. Robust program evaluation is central to our efforts, and utilizes portfolio analysis, process studies, and studies of reach and impact. This presentation will provide an overview of NASA's Universe of Learning, our direct connection to NASA Astrophysics, and our collaborative work with the NASA Astrophysics science community.

  7. Power beaming research at NASA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rather, John D. G.

    1992-01-01

    NASA's current research activities to evaluate laser power beaming systems are summarized with regard to their applications of greatest interest. Key technical certainties and uncertainties pertaining to laser power beaming systems appropriate for space applications are quantified. A path of development is presented that includes maturation of key technology components for reliable laser and millimeter wave power beaming systems during the 1990s.

  8. NASA energy technology applications program

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1980-07-05

    The NASA Energy Technology Applications Program is reviewed. This program covers the following points: 1. wind generation of electricity; 2. photovoltaic solar cells; 3. satellite power systems; 4. direct solar heating and cooling; 5. solar thermal power plants; 6. energy storage; 7. advanced ground propulsion; 8. stationary on-site power supply; 9. advanced coal extraction; 10. magnetic heat pump; 11. aeronautics.

  9. NASA's Commercial Communication Technology Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bagwell, James W.

    1998-01-01

    Various issues associated with "NASA's Commercial Communication Technology Program" are presented in viewgraph form. Specific topics include: 1) Coordination/Integration of government program; 2) Achievement of seamless interoperable satellite and terrestrial networks; 3) Establishment of program to enhance Satcom professional and technical workforce; 4) Precompetitive technology development; and 5) Effective utilization of spectrum and orbit assets.

  10. NASA Publications Guide for Authors

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-01-01

    This document presents guidelines for use by NASA authors in preparation and publication of their scientific and technical information (STI). Section 2 gives an overview. Section 2 describes types of publication. Section 3 discusses technical, data/information, and dissemination reviews. Section 4 provides recommended standards and gives the elements of a typical report. Section 5 presents miscellaneous preparation recommendations.

  11. The NASA Fireball Network Database

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moser, Danielle E.

    2011-01-01

    The NASA Meteoroid Environment Office (MEO) has been operating an automated video fireball network since late-2008. Since that time, over 1,700 multi-station fireballs have been observed. A database containing orbital data and trajectory information on all these events has recently been compiled and is currently being mined for information. Preliminary results are presented here.

  12. NASA Software Engineering Benchmarking Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rarick, Heather L.; Godfrey, Sara H.; Kelly, John C.; Crumbley, Robert T.; Wifl, Joel M.

    2013-01-01

    To identify best practices for the improvement of software engineering on projects, NASA's Offices of Chief Engineer (OCE) and Safety and Mission Assurance (OSMA) formed a team led by Heather Rarick and Sally Godfrey to conduct this benchmarking study. The primary goals of the study are to identify best practices that: Improve the management and technical development of software intensive systems; Have a track record of successful deployment by aerospace industries, universities [including research and development (R&D) laboratories], and defense services, as well as NASA's own component Centers; and Identify candidate solutions for NASA's software issues. Beginning in the late fall of 2010, focus topics were chosen and interview questions were developed, based on the NASA top software challenges. Between February 2011 and November 2011, the Benchmark Team interviewed a total of 18 organizations, consisting of five NASA Centers, five industry organizations, four defense services organizations, and four university or university R and D laboratory organizations. A software assurance representative also participated in each of the interviews to focus on assurance and software safety best practices. Interviewees provided a wealth of information on each topic area that included: software policy, software acquisition, software assurance, testing, training, maintaining rigor in small projects, metrics, and use of the Capability Maturity Model Integration (CMMI) framework, as well as a number of special topics that came up in the discussions. NASA's software engineering practices compared favorably with the external organizations in most benchmark areas, but in every topic, there were ways in which NASA could improve its practices. Compared to defense services organizations and some of the industry organizations, one of NASA's notable weaknesses involved communication with contractors regarding its policies and requirements for acquired software. One of NASA's strengths

  13. Managemant of NASA's major projects

    Science.gov (United States)

    James, L. B.

    1973-01-01

    Approaches used to manage major projects are studied and the existing documents on NASA management are reviewed. The work consists of: (1) the project manager's role, (2) request for proposal, (3) project plan, (4) management information system, (5) project organizational thinking, (6) management disciplines, (7) important decisions, and (8) low cost approach.

  14. NASA low speed centrifugal compressor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hathaway, Michael D.

    1990-01-01

    The flow characteristics of a low speed centrifugal compressor were examined at NASA Lewis Research Center to improve understanding of the flow in centrifugal compressors, to provide models of various flow phenomena, and to acquire benchmark data for three dimensional viscous flow code validation. The paper describes the objectives, test facilities' instrumentation, and experiment preliminary comparisons.

  15. NASA Science Served Family Style

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noel-Storr, Jacob; Mitchell, S.; Drobnes, E.

    2010-01-01

    Family oriented innovative programs extend the reach of many traditional out-of-school venues to involve the entire family in learning in comfortable and fun environments. Research shows that parental involvement is key to increasing student achievement outcomes, and family-oriented programs have a direct impact on student performance. Because families have the greatest influence on children's attitudes towards education and career choices, we have developed a Family Science program that provides families a venue where they can explore the importance of science and technology in our daily lives by engaging in learning activities that change their perception and understanding of science. NASA Family Science Night strives to change the way that students and their families participate in science, within the program and beyond. After three years of pilot implementation and assessment, our evaluation data shows that Family Science Night participants have positive change in their attitudes and involvement in science.  Even after a single session, families are more likely to engage in external science-related activities and are increasingly excited about science in their everyday lives.  As we enter our dissemination phase, NASA Family Science Night will be compiling and releasing initial evaluation results, and providing facilitator training and online support resources. Support for NASA Family Science Nights is provided in part through NASA ROSES grant NNH06ZDA001N.

  16. The NASA Carbon Monitoring System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hurtt, G. C.

    2015-12-01

    Greenhouse gas emission inventories, forest carbon sequestration programs (e.g., Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD and REDD+), cap-and-trade systems, self-reporting programs, and their associated monitoring, reporting and verification (MRV) frameworks depend upon data that are accurate, systematic, practical, and transparent. A sustained, observationally-driven carbon monitoring system using remote sensing data has the potential to significantly improve the relevant carbon cycle information base for the U.S. and world. Initiated in 2010, NASA's Carbon Monitoring System (CMS) project is prototyping and conducting pilot studies to evaluate technological approaches and methodologies to meet carbon monitoring and reporting requirements for multiple users and over multiple scales of interest. NASA's approach emphasizes exploitation of the satellite remote sensing resources, computational capabilities, scientific knowledge, airborne science capabilities, and end-to-end system expertise that are major strengths of the NASA Earth Science program. Through user engagement activities, the NASA CMS project is taking specific actions to be responsive to the needs of stakeholders working to improve carbon MRV frameworks. The first phase of NASA CMS projects focused on developing products for U.S. biomass/carbon stocks and global carbon fluxes, and on scoping studies to identify stakeholders and explore other potential carbon products. The second phase built upon these initial efforts, with a large expansion in prototyping activities across a diversity of systems, scales, and regions, including research focused on prototype MRV systems and utilization of COTS technologies. Priorities for the future include: 1) utilizing future satellite sensors, 2) prototyping with commercial off-the-shelf technology, 3) expanding the range of prototyping activities, 4) rigorous evaluation, uncertainty quantification, and error characterization, 5) stakeholder

  17. NASA EEE Parts and NASA Electronic Parts and Packaging (NEPP) Program Update 2018

    Science.gov (United States)

    Label, Kenneth A.; Sampson, Michael J.; Pellish, Jonathan A.; Majewicz, Peter J.

    2018-01-01

    NASA Electronic Parts and Packaging (NEPP) Program and NASA Electronic Parts Assurance Group (NEPAG) are NASAs point-of-contacts for reliability and radiation tolerance of EEE parts and their packages. This presentation includes an FY18 program overview.

  18. 76 FR 64122 - NASA Advisory Committee; Renewal of NASA's International Space Station Advisory Committee Charter

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-10-17

    ... NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION [Notice (11-095)] NASA Advisory Committee; Renewal of NASA's International Space Station Advisory Committee Charter AGENCY: National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). ACTION: Notice of renewal and amendment of the Charter of the International...

  19. NASA's Chandra Finds Black Holes Are "Green"

    Science.gov (United States)

    2006-04-01

    Black holes are the most fuel efficient engines in the Universe, according to a new study using NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory. By making the first direct estimate of how efficient or "green" black holes are, this work gives insight into how black holes generate energy and affect their environment. The new Chandra finding shows that most of the energy released by matter falling toward a supermassive black hole is in the form of high-energy jets traveling at near the speed of light away from the black hole. This is an important step in understanding how such jets can be launched from magnetized disks of gas near the event horizon of a black hole. Illustration of Fuel for a Black Hole Engine Illustration of Fuel for a Black Hole Engine "Just as with cars, it's critical to know the fuel efficiency of black holes," said lead author Steve Allen of the Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology at Stanford University, and the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center. "Without this information, we cannot figure out what is going on under the hood, so to speak, or what the engine can do." Allen and his team used Chandra to study nine supermassive black holes at the centers of elliptical galaxies. These black holes are relatively old and generate much less radiation than quasars, rapidly growing supermassive black holes seen in the early Universe. The surprise came when the Chandra results showed that these "quiet" black holes are all producing much more energy in jets of high-energy particles than in visible light or X-rays. These jets create huge bubbles, or cavities, in the hot gas in the galaxies. Animation of Black Hole in Elliptical Galaxy Animation of Black Hole in Elliptical Galaxy The efficiency of the black hole energy-production was calculated in two steps: first Chandra images of the inner regions of the galaxies were used to estimate how much fuel is available for the black hole; then Chandra images were used to estimate the power required to produce

  20. NASA Space Science Resource Catalog

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teays, T.

    2000-05-01

    The NASA Office of Space Science Resource Catalog provides a convenient online interface for finding space science products for use in classrooms, science museums, planetariums, and many other venues. Goals in developing this catalog are: (1) create a cataloging system for all NASA OSS education products, (2) develop a system for characterizing education products which is meaningful to a large clientele, (3) develop a mechanism for evaluating products, (4) provide a user-friendly interface to search and access the data, and (5) provide standardized metadata and interfaces to other cataloging and library systems. The first version of the catalog is being tested at the spring 2000 conventions of the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) and the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) and will be released in summer 2000. The catalog may be viewed at the Origins Education Forum booth.

  1. Harvesting NASA's Common Metadata Repository

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shum, D.; Mitchell, A. E.; Durbin, C.; Norton, J.

    2017-12-01

    As part of NASA's Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS), the Common Metadata Repository (CMR) stores metadata for over 30,000 datasets from both NASA and international providers along with over 300M granules. This metadata enables sub-second discovery and facilitates data access. While the CMR offers a robust temporal, spatial and keyword search functionality to the general public and international community, it is sometimes more desirable for international partners to harvest the CMR metadata and merge the CMR metadata into a partner's existing metadata repository. This poster will focus on best practices to follow when harvesting CMR metadata to ensure that any changes made to the CMR can also be updated in a partner's own repository. Additionally, since each partner has distinct metadata formats they are able to consume, the best practices will also include guidance on retrieving the metadata in the desired metadata format using CMR's Unified Metadata Model translation software.

  2. Space Radiation Research at NASA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norbury, John

    2016-01-01

    The harmful effects of space radiation on astronauts is one of the most important limiting factors for human exploration of space beyond low Earth orbit, including a journey to Mars. This talk will present an overview of space radiation issues that arise throughout the solar system and will describe research efforts at NASA aimed at studying space radiation effects on astronauts, including the experimental program at the NASA Space Radiation Laboratory at Brookhaven National Laboratory. Recent work on galactic cosmic ray simulation at ground based accelerators will also be presented. The three major sources of space radiation, namely geomagnetically trapped particles, solar particle events and galactic cosmic rays will be discussed as well as recent discoveries of the harmful effects of space radiation on the human body. Some suggestions will also be given for developing a space radiation program in the Republic of Korea.

  3. NASA's Earth Science Data Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramapriyan, H. K.

    2015-01-01

    NASA's Earth Science Data Systems (ESDS) Program has evolved over the last two decades, and currently has several core and community components. Core components provide the basic operational capabilities to process, archive, manage and distribute data from NASA missions. Community components provide a path for peer-reviewed research in Earth Science Informatics to feed into the evolution of the core components. The Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS) is a core component consisting of twelve Distributed Active Archive Centers (DAACs) and eight Science Investigator-led Processing Systems spread across the U.S. The presentation covers how the ESDS Program continues to evolve and benefits from as well as contributes to advances in Earth Science Informatics.

  4. Institutions as Knowledge Capital

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Foss, Nicolai Juul; Garzarelli, Giampaolo

    The paper revisits the socioeconomic theory of the Austrian School economist Ludwig M. Lachmann. By showing that the common claim that Lachmann's idiosyncratic (read: eclectic and multidisciplinary) approach to economics entails nihilism is unfounded, it reaches the following conclusions. (1......) Lachmann held a sophisticated institutional position to economics that anticipated developments in contemporary new institutional economics. (2) Lachmann's sociological and economic reading of institutions offers insights for the problem of coordination. (3) Lachmann extends contemporary new institutional...... theory without simultaneously denying the policy approach of comparative institutional analysis. (90 words.)KeywordsComparative institutional analysis, coordination, expectations, institutionalevolution, interpretative institutionalism.JEL CodesB31, B52, B53, D80....

  5. What are Institutional Logics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Berg Johansen, Christina; Waldorff, Susanne Boch

    This study presents new insights into the explanatory power of the institutional logics perspective. With outset in a discussion of seminal theory texts, we identify two fundamental topics that frame institutional logics: overarching institutional orders guides by institutional logics, as well...... as change and agency generated by friction between logics. We use these topics as basis for an analysis of selected empirical papers, with the aim of understanding how institutional logics contribute to institutional theory at large, and which social matters institutional logics can and cannot explore...

  6. NASA Electric Propulsion System Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Felder, James L.

    2015-01-01

    An overview of NASA efforts in the area of hybrid electric and turboelectric propulsion in large transport. This overview includes a list of reasons why we are looking at transmitting some or all of the propulsive power for the aircraft electrically, a list of the different types of hybrid-turbo electric propulsion systems, and the results of 4 aircraft studies that examined different types of hybrid-turbo electric propulsion systems.

  7. NASA/MSFC prediction techniques

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Smith, R.E.

    1987-01-01

    The NASA/MSFC method of forecasting is more formal than NOAA's. The data are smoothed by the Lagrangian method and linear regression prediction techniques are used. The solar activity period is fixed at 11 years--the mean period of all previous cycles. Interestingly, the present prediction for the time of the next solar minimum is February or March of 1987, which, within the uncertainties of two methods, can be taken to be the same as the NOAA result

  8. NASA-Ames vertical gun

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schultz, P. H.

    1984-01-01

    A national facility, the NASA-Ames vertical gun range (AVGR) has an excellent reputation for revealing fundamental aspects of impact cratering that provide important constraints for planetary processes. The current logistics in accessing the AVGR, some of the past and ongoing experimental programs and their relevance, and the future role of this facility in planetary studies are reviewed. Publications resulting from experiments with the gun (1979 to 1984) are listed as well as the researchers and subjects studied.

  9. The NASA Bed Rest Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rhodes, Bradley; Meck, Janice

    2005-01-01

    NASA s National Vision for Space Exploration includes human travel beyond low earth orbit and the ultimate safe return of the crews. Crucial to fulfilling the vision is the successful and timely development of countermeasures for the adverse physiological effects on human systems caused by long term exposure to the microgravity environment. Limited access to in-flight resources for the foreseeable future increases NASA s reliance on ground-based analogs to simulate these effects of microgravity. The primary analog for human based research will be head-down bed rest. By this approach NASA will be able to evaluate countermeasures in large sample sizes, perform preliminary evaluations of proposed in-flight protocols and assess the utility of individual or combined strategies before flight resources are requested. In response to this critical need, NASA has created the Bed Rest Project at the Johnson Space Center. The Project establishes the infrastructure and processes to provide a long term capability for standardized domestic bed rest studies and countermeasure development. The Bed Rest Project design takes a comprehensive, interdisciplinary, integrated approach that reduces the resource overhead of one investigator for one campaign. In addition to integrating studies operationally relevant for exploration, the Project addresses other new Vision objectives, namely: 1) interagency cooperation with the NIH allows for Clinical Research Center (CRC) facility sharing to the benefit of both agencies, 2) collaboration with our International Partners expands countermeasure development opportunities for foreign and domestic investigators as well as promotes consistency in approach and results, 3) to the greatest degree possible, the Project also advances research by clinicians and academia alike to encourage return to earth benefits. This paper will describe the Project s top level goals, organization and relationship to other Exploration Vision Projects, implementation

  10. NASA Occupant Protection Standards Development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Somers, Jeffrey; Gernhardt, Michael; Lawrence, Charles

    2012-01-01

    Historically, spacecraft landing systems have been tested with human volunteers, because analytical methods for estimating injury risk were insufficient. These tests were conducted with flight-like suits and seats to verify the safety of the landing systems. Currently, NASA uses the Brinkley Dynamic Response Index to estimate injury risk, although applying it to the NASA environment has drawbacks: (1) Does not indicate severity or anatomical location of injury (2) Unclear if model applies to NASA applications. Because of these limitations, a new validated, analytical approach was desired. Leveraging off of the current state of the art in automotive safety and racing, a new approach was developed. The approach has several aspects: (1) Define the acceptable level of injury risk by injury severity (2) Determine the appropriate human surrogate for testing and modeling (3) Mine existing human injury data to determine appropriate Injury Assessment Reference Values (IARV). (4) Rigorously Validate the IARVs with sub-injurious human testing (5) Use validated IARVs to update standards and vehicle requirement

  11. What are Institutional Logics

    OpenAIRE

    Berg Johansen, Christina; Bock Waldorff, Susanne

    2015-01-01

    This study presents new insights into the explanatory power of the institutional logics perspective. With outset in a discussion of seminal theory texts, we identify two fundamental topics that frame institutional logics: overarching institutional orders guided by institutional logics, as well as change and agency generated by friction between logics. We use these topics as basis for an analysis of selected empirical papers, with the aim of understanding how institutional logics contribute to...

  12. 78 FR 54680 - NASA Federal Advisory Committees

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-05

    ... Committee Management Division, Office of International and Interagency Relations, NASA Headquarters... AGENCY: National Aeronautics and Space Administration. ACTION: Annual Invitation for Public Nominations... invitation for public nominations for service on NASA Federal advisory committees. U.S. citizens may nominate...

  13. Technology transfer at NASA - A librarian's view

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buchan, Ronald L.

    1991-01-01

    The NASA programs, publications, and services promoting the transfer and utilization of aerospace technology developed by and for NASA are briefly surveyed. Topics addressed include the corporate sources of NASA technical information and its interest for corporate users of information services; the IAA and STAR abstract journals; NASA/RECON, NTIS, and the AIAA Aerospace Database; the RECON Space Commercialization file; the Computer Software Management and Information Center file; company information in the RECON database; and services to small businesses. Also discussed are the NASA publications Tech Briefs and Spinoff, the Industrial Applications Centers, NASA continuing bibliographies on management and patent abstracts (indexed using the NASA Thesaurus), the Index to NASA News Releases and Speeches, and the Aerospace Research Information Network (ARIN).

  14. DOE and NASA joint Dark Energy mission

    CERN Multimedia

    2003-01-01

    "DOE and NASA announced their plan for a Joint Dark Energy Mission (JDEM) on October 23, 2003, at the NASA Office of Space Science Structure and Evolution of the Universe Subcommittee (SEUS) meeting" (1 paragraph).

  15. 76 FR 41825 - NASA Advisory Council; Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-07-15

    ... Avenue, NASA Research Park, NASA Ames Research Center (ARC), Moffett Field, CA 94035-1000. FOR FURTHER... Headquarters, Washington, DC 20546, 202/358-1148. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The agenda for the meeting will...

  16. Complete NASA Dryden Staff of 1985, in front of building 4800

    Science.gov (United States)

    1985-01-01

    In 1985 the NASA Ames-Dryden Flight Research Facility employees and contractors gathered around the base of the X-1E for a picture. The X-1E is mounted in front of building 4800, the main building at Dryden. On Wednesday, October 1, 1958, the NACA yellow-backed winged symbol (see E-33718) that represented the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics for 43-years, was removed from the front of the main building at the NASA High Speed Flight Station, making room for a new insignia belonging to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. This NASA Insignia was created by retiree James J. Modarelli, former Chief of Technical Publication of Lewis Research Center; designed by the Army Institute of Heraldry; and approved by the Commission of Fine Arts and the NASA Administrator. This official insignia of the NASA is a dark blue disc with white stars. The white hand-cut letters 'NASA' are in the center of the disc and are encircled by a white diagonal orbit. A solid red 'V' shape appears behind and in front of the letters and extends beyond the disc. The 'V' is patterned after an actual wing design being tested by NACA researchers during the late 1950s. This insignia was used from 1958 to 1975 and was affectionately known at the 'meatball,' returning to NASA Insignia status in 1992. In the photo above the NASA Logotype appearing on the front of the main building replaced the NASA Insignia. The NASA Logotype was developed under the Federal Design Improvement Program initiated by the President in 1972, with the preferred color being red. It was approved by the Commission of Fine Arts and the NASA Administrator in October 1975. It symbolized NASA's role in aeronautics and space from 1975 to 1992 and has since been retired. In the logotype, the letters 'NASA' are reduced with the strokes being of one width; the elimination of cross strokes in the two 'A' letters imparts a quality of uniqueness and contemporary character. This familiar logo was known as 'The Worm'. On

  17. NASA/American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) Summer Faculty Fellowship Program, 1991

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tiwari, S.N.

    1991-09-01

    In a series of collaborations between NASA research and development centers and nearby universities, engineering faculty members spent 10 weeks working with professional peers on research. The Summer Faculty Program Committee of the American Society of Engineering Education supervises the programs. The objects were the following: (1) to further the professional knowledge of qualified engineering and science faculty members; (2) to stimulate and exchange ideas between participants and NASA; (3) to enrich and refresh the research and teaching activities of the participants' institutions; and (4) to contribute to the research objectives of the NASA center

  18. NASA Technologies that Benefit Society

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffin, Amanda

    2012-01-01

    Applications developed on Earth of technology needed for space flight have produced thousands of spinoffs that contribute to improving national security, the economy, productivity and lifestyle. Over the course of it s history, NASA has nurtured partnerships with the private sector to facilitate the transfer of NASA-developed technology. For every dollar spent on research and development in the space program, it receives back $7 back in the form of corporate and personal income taxes from increased jobs and economic growth. A new technology, known as Liquid-metal alloy, is the result of a project funded by NASA s Jet Propulsion Lab. The unique technology is a blend of titanium, zirconium, nickel, copper and beryllium that achieves a strength greater than titanium. NASA plans to use this metal in the construction of a drill that will help for the search of water beneath the surface of Mars. Many other applications include opportunities in aerospace, defense, military, automotive, medical instrumentation and sporting goods.Developed in the 1980 s, the original Sun Tigers Inc sunlight-filtering lens has withstood the test of time. This technology was first reported in 1987 by NASA s JPL. Two scientists from JPL were later tasked with studying the harmful effects of radiation produced during laser and welding work. They came up with a transparent welding curtain that absorbs, filters and scatters light to maximize protection of human eyes. The two scientists then began doing business as Eagle Eye Optics. Each pair of sunglasses comes complete with ultraviolet protection, dual layer scratch resistant coating, polarized filters for maximum protection against glare and high visual clarity. Sufficient evidence shows that damage to the eye, especially to the retina, starts much earlier than most people realize. Sun filtering sunglasses are important. Winglets seen at the tips of airplane wings are among aviations most visible fuel-saving, performance enhancing technology

  19. Investments by NASA to build planetary protection capability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buxbaum, Karen; Conley, Catharine; Lin, Ying; Hayati, Samad

    NASA continues to invest in capabilities that will enable or enhance planetary protection planning and implementation for future missions. These investments are critical to the Mars Exploration Program and will be increasingly important as missions are planned for exploration of the outer planets and their icy moons. Since the last COSPAR Congress, there has been an opportunity to respond to the advice of NRC-PREVCOM and the analysis of the MEPAG Special Regions Science Analysis Group. This stimulated research into such things as expanded bioburden reduction options, modern molecular assays and genetic inventory capability, and approaches to understand or avoid recontamination of spacecraft parts and samples. Within NASA, a portfolio of PP research efforts has been supported through the NASA Office of Planetary Protection, the Mars Technology Program, and the Mars Program Office. The investment strategy focuses on technology investments designed to enable future missions and reduce their costs. In this presentation we will provide an update on research and development supported by NASA to enhance planetary protection capability. Copyright 2008 California Institute of Technology. Government sponsorship acknowledged.

  20. New NASA Technologies for Space Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calle, Carlos I.

    2015-01-01

    NASA is developing new technologies to enable planetary exploration. NASA's Space Launch System is an advance vehicle for exploration beyond LEO. Robotic explorers like the Mars Science Laboratory are exploring Mars, making discoveries that will make possible the future human exploration of the planet. In this presentation, we report on technologies being developed at NASA KSC for planetary exploration.

  1. 78 FR 41804 - NASA Advisory Council; Meeting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-07-11

    ... NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION [Notice: (13-077)] NASA Advisory Council; Meeting... Space Administration announces a meeting of the NASA Advisory Council (NAC). DATES: Wednesday, July 31... ADDRESSES: NASA Headquarters, Room 9H40, Program Review Center, 300 E Street SW., Washington, DC 20456 FOR...

  2. 48 CFR 1842.271 - NASA clause.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... 48 Federal Acquisition Regulations System 6 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 true NASA clause. 1842.271 Section 1842.271 Federal Acquisition Regulations System NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION... NASA clause. Insert the clause at 1852.242-70, Technical Direction, when paragraph 3(m) of the NASA...

  3. 75 FR 4588 - NASA Advisory Council; Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-28

    ... NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION [Notice 10-011] NASA Advisory Council; Meeting... Committee of the NASA Advisory Council. This will be the first meeting of this Committee. DATES: February 11, 2010--11 a.m.-1 p.m. (EST). Meet-Me-Number: 1-877-613-3958; 2939943. ADDRESSES: NASA Headquarters, 300...

  4. 76 FR 4133 - NASA Advisory Council; Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-24

    ... NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION [Notice: (11-007)] NASA Advisory Council; Meeting... Space Administration announces a meeting of the NASA Advisory Council. DATES: Thursday, February 10, 2011, 8 a.m.-5 p.m., Local Time. Friday, February 11, 2011, 8 a.m.-12 p.m., Local Time. ADDRESSES: NASA...

  5. 75 FR 5629 - NASA Advisory Council; Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-02-03

    ... NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION [Notice (10-019)] NASA Advisory Council; Meeting... Space Administration announces a meeting of the NASA Advisory Council. DATES: Thursday, February 18, 2010, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. EST; Friday, February 19, 2010, 9 a.m.-1 p.m., EST. ADDRESSES: NASA Headquarters...

  6. 77 FR 9997 - NASA Advisory Council; Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-02-21

    ... NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION [Notice (12-016)] NASA Advisory Council; Meeting... Space Administration announces a meeting of the NASA Advisory Council (NAC). DATES: Thursday, March 8, 2012, 8 a.m.-5 p.m., local time and Friday, March 9, 2012, 8 a.m.-12 p.m., local time. ADDRESSES: NASA...

  7. 75 FR 4875 - NASA Advisory Council; Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-29

    ... NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION [Notice (10-015)] NASA Advisory Council; Meeting... the NASA Advisory Council. This will be the first meeting of this Committee. DATES: February 17, 2010--10 a.m.-4 p.m. (EST). ADDRESSES: NASA Headquarters, 300 E Street, SW., Washington, DC, Room CD61. FOR...

  8. NASA Education Implementation Plan 2015-2017

    Science.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration, 2015

    2015-01-01

    The NASA Education Implementation Plan (NEIP) provides an understanding of the role of NASA in advancing the nation's STEM education and workforce pipeline. The document outlines the roles and responsibilities that NASA Education has in approaching and achieving the agency's and administration's strategic goals in STEM Education. The specific…

  9. NASA Ames Environmental Sustainability Report 2011

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, Ann H.

    2011-01-01

    The 2011 Ames Environmental Sustainability Report is the second in a series of reports describing the steps NASA Ames Research Center has taken toward assuring environmental sustainability in NASA Ames programs, projects, and activities. The Report highlights Center contributions toward meeting the Agency-wide goals under the 2011 NASA Strategic Sustainability Performance Program.

  10. 1998 NASA-ASEE-Stanford Summer Faculty Fellowship Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    1998-01-01

    This report presents the essential features and highlights of the 1998 Summer Faculty Fellowship Program at Ames Research Center and Dryden Flight Research Center in a comprehensive and concise form. Summary reports describing the fellows' technical accomplishments are enclosed in the attached technical report. The proposal for the 1999 NASA-ASEE-Stanford Summer Faculty Fellowship Program is being submitted under separate cover. Of the 31 participating fellows, 27 were at Ames and 4 were at Dryden. The Program's central feature is the active participation by each fellow in one of the key technical activities currently under way at either the NASA Ames Research Center or the NASA Dryden Flight Research Center. The research topic is carefully chosen in advance to satisfy the criteria of: (1) importance to NASA, (2) high technical level, and (3) a good match to the interests, ability, and experience of the fellow, with the implied possibility of NASA-supported follow-on work at the fellow's home institution. Other features of the Summer Faculty Fellowship Program include participation by the fellows in workshops and seminars at Stanford, the Ames Research Center, and other off-site locations. These enrichment programs take place either directly or remotely, via the Stanford Center for Professional Development, and also involve specific interactions between fellows and Stanford faculty on technical and other academic subjects. A few, brief remarks are in order to summarize the fellows' opinions of the summer program. It is noteworthy that 90% of the fellows gave the NASA-Ames/Dryden- Stanford program an "excellent" rating and the remaining 10%, "good." Also, 100% would recommend the program to their colleagues as an effective means of furthering their professional development as teachers and researchers. Last, but not least, 87% of the fellows stated that a continuing research relationship with their NASA colleagues' organization probably would be maintained. Therefore

  11. Overview of NASA Finesse (Field Investigations to Enable Solar System Science and Exploration) Science and Exploration Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heldmann, J. L.; Lim, D.S.S.; Hughes, S.; Nawotniak, S. Kobs; Garry, B.; Sears, D.; Neish, C.; Osinski, G. R.; Hodges, K.; Downs, M.; hide

    2016-01-01

    NASA's FINESSE (Field Investigations to Enable Solar System Science and Exploration) project was selected as a research team by NASA's Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI). SSERVI is a joint Institute supported by NASA's Science Mission Directorate (SMD) and Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate (HEOMD). As such, FINESSE is focused on a science and exploration field-based research program to generate strategic knowledge in preparation for human and robotic exploration of other planetary bodies including our Moon, Mars moons Phobos and Deimos, and near-Earth asteroids. FINESSE embodies the philosophy that "science enables exploration and exploration enables science".

  12. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)/American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) summer faculty fellowship program, 1986, Volume 1

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mcinnis, B.; Goldstein, S.

    1987-06-01

    The Johnson Space Center (JSC) NASA/ASEE Summer Faculty Fellowship Program was conducted by the University of Houston. The basic objectives of the program are: (1) to further the professional knowledge of qualified engineering and science faculty members; (2) to stimulate an exchange of ideas between participants and NASA; (3) to enrich and refresh the research and teaching objectives of participants' institutions; and (4) to contribute to the research objectives of the NASA Centers. Each faculty fellow spent ten weeks at JSC engaged in a research project commensurate with his interests and background and worked in collaboration with a NASA/JSC colleague. Volume 1 contains sections 1 through 14

  13. Risk Management of NASA Projects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarper, Hueseyin

    1997-01-01

    Various NASA Langley Research Center and other center projects were attempted for analysis to obtain historical data comparing pre-phase A study and the final outcome for each project. This attempt, however, was abandoned once it became clear that very little documentation was available. Next, extensive literature search was conducted on the role of risk and reliability concepts in project management. Probabilistic risk assessment (PRA) techniques are being used with increasing regularity both in and outside of NASA. The value and the usage of PRA techniques were reviewed for large projects. It was found that both civilian and military branches of the space industry have traditionally refrained from using PRA, which was developed and expanded by nuclear industry. Although much has changed with the end of the cold war and the Challenger disaster, it was found that ingrained anti-PRA culture is hard to stop. Examples of skepticism against the use of risk management and assessment techniques were found both in the literature and in conversations with some technical staff. Program and project managers need to be convinced that the applicability and use of risk management and risk assessment techniques is much broader than just in the traditional safety-related areas of application. The time has come to begin to uniformly apply these techniques. The whole idea of risk-based system can maximize the 'return on investment' that the public demands. Also, it would be very useful if all project documents of NASA Langley Research Center, pre-phase A through final report, are carefully stored in a central repository preferably in electronic format.

  14. FAA/NASA Joint University Program for Air Transportation Research 1994-1995

    Science.gov (United States)

    Remer, J. H.

    1998-01-01

    The Joint University Program for Air Transportation Research (JUP) is a coordinated set of three grants co-sponsored by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). Under JUP, three institutions: the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Princeton, and Ohio Universities receive research grants and collaborate with FAA and NASA in defining and performing civil aeronautics research in a multitude of areas. Some of these disciplines are artificial intelligence, control theory, atmospheric hazards, navigation, avionics, human factors, flight dynamics, air traffic management, and electronic communications.

  15. NASA's Optical Measurement Program 2014

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cowardin, H.; Lederer, S.; Stansbery, G.; Seitzer, P.; Buckalew, B.; Abercromby, K.; Barker, E.

    2014-01-01

    The Optical Measurements Group (OMG) within the NASA Orbital Debris Program Office (ODPO) addresses U.S. National Space Policy goals by monitoring and characterizing debris. Since 2001, the OMG has used the Michigan Orbital Debris Survey Telescope (MODEST) at Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory (CTIO) in Chile for general orbital debris survey. The 0.6-m Schmidt MODEST provides calibrated astronomical data of GEO targets, both catalogued and uncatalogued debris, with excellent image quality. The data are utilized by the ODPO modeling group and are included in the Orbital Debris Engineering Model (ORDEM) v. 3.0. MODEST and the CTIO/SMARTS (Small and Moderate Aperture Research Telescope System) 0.9 m both acquire filter photometric data, as well as synchronously observing targets in selected optical filters. This information provides data used in material composition studies as well as longer orbital arc data on the same target, without time delay or bias from a rotating, tumbling, or spinning target. NASA, in collaboration with the University of Michigan, began using the twin 6.5-m Magellan telescopes at Las Campanas Observatory in Chile for deep imaging (Baade) and spectroscopic data (Clay) in 2011. Through the data acquired on Baade, debris have been detected that are 3 magnitudes fainter than detections with MODEST, while the data from Clay provide better resolved information used in material characterization analyses via selected bandpasses. To better characterize and model optical data, the Optical Measurements Center (OMC) at NASA/JSC has been in operation since 2005, resulting in a database of comparison laboratory data. The OMC is designed to emulate illumination conditions in space using equipment and techniques that parallel telescopic observations and source-target-sensor orientations. Lastly, the OMG is building the Meter Class Autonomous Telescope (MCAT) at Ascension Island. The 1.3-m telescope is designed to observe GEO and LEO targets, using a

  16. Automated Test for NASA CFS

    Science.gov (United States)

    McComas, David C.; Strege, Susanne L.; Carpenter, Paul B. Hartman, Randy

    2015-01-01

    The core Flight System (cFS) is a flight software (FSW) product line developed by the Flight Software Systems Branch (FSSB) at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC). The cFS uses compile-time configuration parameters to implement variable requirements to enable portability across embedded computing platforms and to implement different end-user functional needs. The verification and validation of these requirements is proving to be a significant challenge. This paper describes the challenges facing the cFS and the results of a pilot effort to apply EXB Solution's testing approach to the cFS applications.

  17. NASA Airline Operations Research Center

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mogford, Richard H.

    2016-01-01

    This is a PowerPoint presentation NASA airline operations center (AOC) research. It includes information on using IBM Watson in the AOC. It also reviews a dispatcher decision support tool call the Flight Awareness Collaboration Tool (FACT). FACT gathers information about winter weather onto one screen and includes predictive abilities. It should prove to be useful for airline dispatchers and airport personnel when they manage winter storms and their effect on air traffic. This material is very similar to other previously approved presentations with the same title.

  18. Antimatter Propulsion Developed by NASA

    Science.gov (United States)

    1999-01-01

    This Quick Time movie shows possible forms of an antimatter propulsion system being developed by NASA. Antimatter annihilation offers the highest possible physical energy density of any known reaction substance. It is about 10 billion times more powerful than that of chemical energy such as hydrogen and oxygen combustion. Antimatter would be the perfect rocket fuel, but the problem is that the basic component of antimatter, antiprotons, doesn't exist in nature and has to manufactured. The process of antimatter development is ongoing and making some strides, but production of this as a propulsion system is far into the future.

  19. Institutional Logics in Action

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lounsbury, Michael; Boxenbaum, Eva

    2013-01-01

    This double volume presents state-of-the-art research and thinking on the dynamics of actors and institutional logics. In the introduction, we briefly sketch the roots and branches of institutional logics scholarship before turning to the new buds of research on the topic of how actors engage...... institutional logics in the course of their organizational practice. We introduce an exciting line of new works on the meta-theoretical foundations of logics, institutional logic processes, and institutional complexity and organizational responses. Collectively, the papers in this volume advance the very...... prolific stream of research on institutional logics by deepening our insight into the active use of institutional logics in organizational action and interaction, including the institutional effects of such (inter)actions....

  20. Canadian institute honours Hawking

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durrani, Matin

    2009-11-01

    The Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics in Waterloo, Canada, has announced that a major new extension to its campus will be known as the Stephen Hawking Centre. The extension, which is currently being built, is due to open in 2011 and will double the size of the institute. It will also provide a home for the institute's Masters students, the first of whom joined the Perimeter Institute this autumn as part of its Perimeter Scholars international programme.

  1. Multinationals and Institutional Competitiveness

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hull Kristensen, Peer; Morgan, Glenn

    This article discusses how institutional competitiveness and multinationals are mutually enriching concepts. Seen from the perspective of Multinationals, institutional competitiveness becomes expressed at two levels. At the level of corporate HQs institutional competitiveness proves itself...... competitiveness of Liberal Market Economies and Coordinated Markets Economies under the current competitive regime....

  2. NASA thermionic-conversion program

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Morris, J.F.

    1977-01-01

    NASA's program for applied research and technology (ART) in thermionic energy conversion (TEC) has made worthwhile contributions in a relatively short time: Many of these accomplishments are incremental, yet important. And their integration has yielded gains in performance as well as in the knowledge necessary to point productive directions for future work. Both promise and problems derive from the degrees of freedom allowed by the current programmatic emphasis on out-of-core thermionics. Materials and designs previously prohibited by in-core nucleonics and geometries now offer new potentialities. But as a result a major TEC-ART responsibility is the efficient reduction of the glitter of diverse possibilities to the hard glint of reality. As always high-temperature material effects are crucial to the level and duration of TEC performance: New electrodes must increase and maintain power output regardless of emitter-vapor deposition on collectors. They must also serve compatibly with hot-shell alloys. And while space TEC must face high-temperature vaporization problems externally as well as internally, terrestrial TEC must tolerate hot corrosive atmospheres outside and near-vacuum inside. Furthermore, some modes for decreasing interelectrode losses appear to require rather demanding converter geometries to produce practical power densities. In these areas and others significant progress is being made in the NASA TEC-ART Program

  3. NASA Space Rocket Logistics Challenges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neeley, James R.; Jones, James V.; Watson, Michael D.; Bramon, Christopher J.; Inman, Sharon K.; Tuttle, Loraine

    2014-01-01

    The Space Launch System (SLS) is the new NASA heavy lift launch vehicle and is scheduled for its first mission in 2017. The goal of the first mission, which will be uncrewed, is to demonstrate the integrated system performance of the SLS rocket and spacecraft before a crewed flight in 2021. SLS has many of the same logistics challenges as any other large scale program. Common logistics concerns for SLS include integration of discreet programs geographically separated, multiple prime contractors with distinct and different goals, schedule pressures and funding constraints. However, SLS also faces unique challenges. The new program is a confluence of new hardware and heritage, with heritage hardware constituting seventy-five percent of the program. This unique approach to design makes logistics concerns such as commonality especially problematic. Additionally, a very low manifest rate of one flight every four years makes logistics comparatively expensive. That, along with the SLS architecture being developed using a block upgrade evolutionary approach, exacerbates long-range planning for supportability considerations. These common and unique logistics challenges must be clearly identified and tackled to allow SLS to have a successful program. This paper will address the common and unique challenges facing the SLS programs, along with the analysis and decisions the NASA Logistics engineers are making to mitigate the threats posed by each.

  4. AGU testifies on NASA Budget

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simarski, Lynn Teo

    Witnesses from outside the U.S. government—including Frank Eden, representing AGU—testified about the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's budget on March 12 before the House Science Committee's subcommittee on space. One major topic of the hearing was familiar: what should NASA's top priority be, space science or human exploration of space.“Obviously this committee has a huge job of trying to set priorities—consistent with the budget restraints—that will end up giving the American taxpayer the most bang for his buck, as well as providing direction for our space program,” said F. James Sensenbrenner, Jr. (R-Wis.), the subcommittee's ranking Republican. Another recurring topic, cited by the subcommittee's new chairman, Ralph M. Hall (D-Tex.), as well as by other committee members, was how to translate NASA-developed technologies into commercial gain for the U.S. in the global marketplace. Hall and others also posed a number of questions on a topic the chairman called a special concern of his: whether it would be economically and scientifically plausible for the U.S. to use the Soviet space station Mir for certain activities, such as medical applications.

  5. The NASA Beyond Einstein Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, Nicholas E.

    2006-01-01

    Einstein's legacy is incomplete, his theory of General relativity raises -- but cannot answer --three profound questions: What powered the big bang? What happens to space, time, and matter at the edge of a black hole? and What is the mysterious dark energy pulling the Universe apart? The Beyond Einstein program within NASA's Office of Space Science aims to answer these questions, employing a series of missions linked by powerful new technologies and complementary approaches towards shared science goals. The Beyond Einstein program has three linked elements which advance science and technology towards two visions; to detect directly gravitational wave signals from the earliest possible moments of the BIg Bang, and to image the event horizon of a black hole. The central element is a pair of Einstein Great Observatories, Constellation-X and LISA. Constellation-X is a powerful new X-ray observatory dedicated to X-Ray Spectroscopy. LISA is the first spaced based gravitational wave detector. These powerful facilities will blaze new paths to the questions about black holes, the Big Bang and dark energy. The second element is a series of competitively selected Einstein Probes, each focused on one of the science questions and includes a mission dedicated resolving the Dark Energy mystery. The third element is a program of technology development, theoretical studies and education. The Beyond Einstein program is a new element in the proposed NASA budget for 2004. This talk will give an overview of the program and the missions contained within it.

  6. NASA's Planetary Defense Coordination Office at NASA HQ

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daou, D.; Johnson, L.; Fast, K. E.; Landis, R.; Friedensen, V. P.; Kelley, M.

    2017-12-01

    NASA and its partners maintain a watch for near-Earth objects (NEOs), asteroids and comets that pass close to the Earth, as part of an ongoing effort to discover, catalog, and characterize these bodies. The PDCO is responsible for: Ensuring the early detection of potentially hazardous objects (PHOs) - asteroids and comets whose orbit are predicted to bring them within 0.05 Astronomical Units of Earth; and of a size large enough to reach Earth's surface - that is, greater than perhaps 30 to 50 meters; Tracking and characterizing PHOs and issuing warnings about potential impacts; Providing timely and accurate communications about PHOs; and Performing as a lead coordination node in U.S. Government planning for response to an actual impact threat. The PDCO collaborates with other U.S. Government agencies, other national and international agencies, and professional and amateur astronomers around the world. The PDCO also is responsible for facilitating communications between the science community and the public should any potentially hazardous NEO be discovered. In addition, the PDCO works closely with the United Nations Office of Outer Space Affairs, its Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space, and its Action Team on Near Earth Objects (also known as Action Team 14). The PDCO is a leading member of the International Asteroid Warning Network (IAWN) and the Space Missions Planning Advisory Group (SMPAG), multinational endeavors recommended by the United Nations for an international response to the NEO impact hazard and established and operated by the space-capable nations. The PDCO also communicates with the scientific community through channels such as NASA's Small Bodies Assessment Group (SBAG). In this talk, we will provide an update to the office's various efforts and new opportunities for partnerships in the continuous international effort for Planetary Defense.

  7. Science Outreach at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lebo, George

    2002-07-01

    At the end of World War II Duane Deming, an internationally known economist enunciated what later came to be called "Total Quality Management" (TQM). The basic thrust of this economic theory called for companies and governments to identify their customers and to do whatever was necessary to meet their demands and to keep them satisfied. It also called for companies to compete internally. That is, they were to build products that competed with their own so that they were always improving. Unfortunately most U.S. corporations failed to heed this advice. Consequently, the Japanese who actively sought Deming's advice and instituted it in their corporate planning, built an economy that outstripped that of the U.S. for the next three to four decades. Only after U.S. corporations reorganized and fashioned joint ventures which incorporated the tenets of TQM with their Japanese competitors did they start to catch up. Other institutions such as the U.S. government and its agencies and schools face the same problem. While the power of the U.S. government is in no danger of being usurped, its agencies and schools face real problems which can be traced back to not heeding Deming's advice. For example, the public schools are facing real pressure from private schools and home school families because they are not meeting the needs of the general public, Likewise, NASA and other government agencies find themselves shortchanged in funding because they have failed to convince the general public that their missions are important. In an attempt to convince the general public that its science mission is both interesting and important, in 1998 the Science Directorate at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) instituted a new outreach effort using the interact to reach the general public as well as the students. They have called it 'Science@NASA'.

  8. NASA University Program Management Information System

    Science.gov (United States)

    1999-01-01

    As basic policy, NASA believes that colleges and universities should be encouraged to participate in the nation's space and aeronautics program to the maximum extent practicable. Indeed, universities are considered as partners with government and industry in the nation's aerospace program. NASA's objective is to have them bring their scientific, engineering, and social research competence to bear on aerospace problems and on the broader social, economic, and international implications of NASA's technical and scientific programs. It is expected that, in so doing, universities will strengthen both their research and their educational capabilities to contribute more effectively to the national well-being. NASA field codes and certain Headquarters program offices provide funds for those activities in universities which contribute to the mission needs of that particular NASA element. Although NASA has no predetermined amount of money to devote to university activities, the effort funded each year is substantial. (See the bar chart on the next page). This annual report is one means of documenting the NASA-university relationship, frequently denoted, collectively, as NASA's University Program. This report is consistent with agency accounting records, as the data is obtained from NASA's Financial and Contractual Status (FACS) System, operated by the Financial Management Division and the Procurement Office. However, in accordance with interagency agreements, the orientation differs from that required for financial or procurement purposes. Any apparent discrepancies between this report and other NASA procurement or financial reports stem from the selection criteria for the data.

  9. Furthering critical institutionalism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frances Dalton Cleaver

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available This special issue furthers the study of natural resource management from a critical institutional perspective. Critical institutionalism (CI is a contemporary body of thought that explores how institutions dynamically mediate relationships between people, natural resources and society. It focuses on the complexity of institutions entwined in everyday social life, their historical formation, the interplay between formal and informal, traditional and modern arrangements, and the power relations that animate them. In such perspectives a social justice lens is often used to scrutinise the outcomes of institutional processes. We argue here that critical institutional approaches have potentially much to offer commons scholarship, particularly through the explanatory power of the concept of bricolage for better understanding institutional change.  Critical institutional approaches, gathering momentum over the past 15 years or so, have excited considerable interest but the insights generated from different disciplinary perspectives remain insufficiently synthesised. Analyses emphasising complexity can be relatively illegible to policy-makers, a fact which lessens their reach. This special issue therefore aims to synthesise critical institutional ideas and so to lay the foundation for moving beyond the emergent stage to make meaningful academic and policy impact. In bringing together papers here we define and synthesise key themes of critical institutionalism, outline the concept of institutional bricolage and identity some key challenges facing this school of thought.

  10. Entrepreneurship as institutional change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bjerregaard, Toke; Lauring, Jakob

    2012-01-01

    This paper responds to calls to make more explicit linkages between institutional theory and entrepreneurship research through studies on how entrepreneurs navigate and work with institutions. The research examines the micro-strategies and activities through which small-scale entrepreneurs maneuver...... between and exploit the multiple, potentially contradictory institutional logics of the different spheres in which they operate. While much research has elucidated how institutional entrepreneurs effect change, this study illustrates how effective entrepreneurs managing and exploiting institutional...... contradictions engage simultaneously in practices of maintaining and changing institutions to establish a balance between the poles on which their ventures depend. We illustrate this by two cases of small-scale entrepreneurship bridging institutional contradictions from an ethnographic study conducted under...

  11. From Institutional Change to Experimentalist Institutions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hull Kristensen, Peer; Morgan, Glenn

    2012-01-01

    Institutionalist theory has shown how work and employment relations are shaped by national contexts. Recent developments in these theories have been increasingly concerned with the issue of institutional change. This reflects a shift in the nature of the competitive environment of firms from...... and institutions. In this paper, we emphasize that in the current context of globalization, firms and actors within firms are continuously developing the way in which they organize work and employment to produce goods and services that are competitive in global markets. The paper argues that new market conditions...... lead firms to constant experimentation in work organization as they seek to position themselves within systems of production and innovation that are global in nature. This creates a pressure for institutional change to facilitate the process of firm-level experimentation; it also tends to create...

  12. Current NASA Plans for Mars In Situ Resource Utilization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanders, Gerald

    2018-01-01

    The presentation is to provide relevant information to the NASA funded Center for the Utilization of Biological Engineering in Space (CUBES) Institute. The presentation cover the following: 1) What is In Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU), 2) What are the resources of interest at the Moon and Mars, 3) ISRU-related mission requirements and ISRU economics, 4) Challenges and Risk for ISRU, 5) Concept of Operation for Mars ISRU Systems, 6) Current State of the Art (SOA) in ISRU, and 7) Current ISRU development and mission status.

  13. Titan Ice and Dust Experiment (TIDE): Detection and Analysis of Compounds of Interest to Astrobiology in the Lower Atmosphere and Surface of Titan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kojiro, Daniel R.; Holland Paul M.; Stimac, Robert M.; Kaye, William J.; Takeruchi, Noreshige

    2004-01-01

    The Titan Orbiter Aerorover Mission (TOAM) is a proposed concept for the Solar System Exploration Visions Mission, Titan Explorer, a follow-on to the Cassini-Huygens mission. TOAM would use a Titan polar orbiter and a lighter-than-air aerorover to investigate the surface and atmosphere of Titan. Astrobiology issues will be addressed though TOAM investigations including, for example: Distribution and composition of organics (atmospheric, aerosol, surface); Organic chemical processes, their chemical context and energy sources; and Seasonal variations and interactions of the atmosphere and surface. The TIDE instrument will perform in-situ analyses to obtain comprehensive and sensitive molecular and elemental assays of volatile organics in the atmosphere, oceans and surface. TIDE chemical analyses are conducted by a Gas Chromatograph-Ion Mobility Spectrometer (GC-IMS). This TIDE GC-IMS was a component of the mini-Cometary Ice and Dust Experiment (mini-CIDEX) developed for the chemical analysis of a cometary environment. Both the GC and helium IMS of mini-CIDEX have been further developed to better meet the analytical and operational requirements of the TOAM. application. A Micro-ElectroMechanical System (MEMS) GC and Mini-Cell helium IMS are under development to replace their respective mini-CIDEX components, providing similar or advanced analytical capabilities.

  14. The subsurface geology of Río Tinto: material examined during a simulated Mars drilling mission for the Mars Astrobiology Research and Technology Experiment (MARTE).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prieto-Ballesteros, Olga; Martínez-Frías, Jesús; Schutt, John; Sutter, Brad; Heldmann, Jennifer L; Bell, Mary Sue; Battler, Melissa; Cannon, Howard; Gómez-Elvira, Javier; Stoker, Carol R

    2008-10-01

    The 2005 Mars Astrobiology Research and Technology Experiment (MARTE) project conducted a simulated 1-month Mars drilling mission in the Río Tinto district, Spain. Dry robotic drilling, core sampling, and biological and geological analytical technologies were collectively tested for the first time for potential use on Mars. Drilling and subsurface sampling and analytical technologies are being explored for Mars because the subsurface is the most likely place to find life on Mars. The objectives of this work are to describe drilling, sampling, and analytical procedures; present the geological analysis of core and borehole material; and examine lessons learned from the drilling simulation. Drilling occurred at an undisclosed location, causing the science team to rely only on mission data for geological and biological interpretations. Core and borehole imaging was used for micromorphological analysis of rock, targeting rock for biological analysis, and making decisions regarding the next day's drilling operations. Drilling reached 606 cm depth into poorly consolidated gossan that allowed only 35% of core recovery and contributed to borehole wall failure during drilling. Core material containing any indication of biology was sampled and analyzed in more detail for its confirmation. Despite the poorly consolidated nature of the subsurface gossan, dry drilling was able to retrieve useful core material for geological and biological analysis. Lessons learned from this drilling simulation can guide the development of dry drilling and subsurface geological and biological analytical technologies for future Mars drilling missions.

  15. [Activities of Research Institute for Advanced Computer Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gross, Anthony R. (Technical Monitor); Leiner, Barry M.

    2001-01-01

    The Research Institute for Advanced Computer Science (RIACS) carries out basic research and technology development in computer science, in support of the National Aeronautics and Space Administrations missions. RIACS is located at the NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, California. RIACS research focuses on the three cornerstones of IT research necessary to meet the future challenges of NASA missions: 1. Automated Reasoning for Autonomous Systems Techniques are being developed enabling spacecraft that will be self-guiding and self-correcting to the extent that they will require little or no human intervention. Such craft will be equipped to independently solve problems as they arise, and fulfill their missions with minimum direction from Earth. 2. Human-Centered Computing Many NASA missions require synergy between humans and computers, with sophisticated computational aids amplifying human cognitive and perceptual abilities. 3. High Performance Computing and Networking Advances in the performance of computing and networking continue to have major impact on a variety of NASA endeavors, ranging from modeling and simulation to analysis of large scientific datasets to collaborative engineering, planning and execution. In addition, RIACS collaborates with NASA scientists to apply IT research to a variety of NASA application domains. RIACS also engages in other activities, such as workshops, seminars, visiting scientist programs and student summer programs, designed to encourage and facilitate collaboration between the university and NASA IT research communities.

  16. NASA's Great Observatories Celebrate International Year of Astronomy

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-11-01

    A never-before-seen view of the turbulent heart of our Milky Way galaxy is being unveiled by NASA on Nov. 10. This event will commemorate the 400 years since Galileo first turned his telescope to the heavens in 1609. In celebration of this International Year of Astronomy, NASA is releasing images of the galactic center region as seen by its Great Observatories to more than 150 planetariums, museums, nature centers, libraries, and schools across the country. The sites will unveil a giant, 6-foot-by-3-foot print of the bustling hub of our galaxy that combines a near-infrared view from the Hubble Space Telescope, an infrared view from the Spitzer Space Telescope, and an X-ray view from the Chandra X-ray Observatory into one multiwavelength picture. Experts from all three observatories carefully assembled the final image from large mosaic photo surveys taken by each telescope. This composite image provides one of the most detailed views ever of our galaxy's mysterious core. Participating institutions also will display a matched trio of Hubble, Spitzer, and Chandra images of the Milky Way's center on a second large panel measuring 3 feet by 4 feet. Each image shows the telescope's different wavelength view of the galactic center region, illustrating not only the unique science each observatory conducts, but also how far astronomy has come since Galileo. The composite image features the spectacle of stellar evolution: from vibrant regions of star birth, to young hot stars, to old cool stars, to seething remnants of stellar death called black holes. This activity occurs against a fiery backdrop in the crowded, hostile environment of the galaxy's core, the center of which is dominated by a supermassive black hole nearly four million times more massive than our Sun. Permeating the region is a diffuse blue haze of X-ray light from gas that has been heated to millions of degrees by outflows from the supermassive black hole as well as by winds from massive stars and by stellar

  17. NASA Spacecraft Fault Management Workshop Results

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newhouse, Marilyn; McDougal, John; Barley, Bryan; Fesq, Lorraine; Stephens, Karen

    2010-01-01

    Fault Management is a critical aspect of deep-space missions. For the purposes of this paper, fault management is defined as the ability of a system to detect, isolate, and mitigate events that impact, or have the potential to impact, nominal mission operations. The fault management capabilities are commonly distributed across flight and ground subsystems, impacting hardware, software, and mission operations designs. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Discovery & New Frontiers (D&NF) Program Office at Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) recently studied cost overruns and schedule delays for 5 missions. The goal was to identify the underlying causes for the overruns and delays, and to develop practical mitigations to assist the D&NF projects in identifying potential risks and controlling the associated impacts to proposed mission costs and schedules. The study found that 4 out of the 5 missions studied had significant overruns due to underestimating the complexity and support requirements for fault management. As a result of this and other recent experiences, the NASA Science Mission Directorate (SMD) Planetary Science Division (PSD) commissioned a workshop to bring together invited participants across government, industry, academia to assess the state of the art in fault management practice and research, identify current and potential issues, and make recommendations for addressing these issues. The workshop was held in New Orleans in April of 2008. The workshop concluded that fault management is not being limited by technology, but rather by a lack of emphasis and discipline in both the engineering and programmatic dimensions. Some of the areas cited in the findings include different, conflicting, and changing institutional goals and risk postures; unclear ownership of end-to-end fault management engineering; inadequate understanding of the impact of mission-level requirements on fault management complexity; and practices, processes, and

  18. NASA Orbital Debris Baseline Populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krisko, Paula H.; Vavrin, A. B.

    2013-01-01

    The NASA Orbital Debris Program Office has created high fidelity populations of the debris environment. The populations include objects of 1 cm and larger in Low Earth Orbit through Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit. They were designed for the purpose of assisting debris researchers and sensor developers in planning and testing. This environment is derived directly from the newest ORDEM model populations which include a background derived from LEGEND, as well as specific events such as the Chinese ASAT test, the Iridium 33/Cosmos 2251 accidental collision, the RORSAT sodium-potassium droplet releases, and other miscellaneous events. It is the most realistic ODPO debris population to date. In this paper we present the populations in chart form. We describe derivations of the background population and the specific populations added on. We validate our 1 cm and larger Low Earth Orbit population against SSN, Haystack, and HAX radar measurements.

  19. NASA Procurement Career Development Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    1987-01-01

    The NASA Procurement Career Development Program establishes an agency-wide framework for the management of career development activity in the procurement field. Within this framework, installations are encouraged to modify the various components to meet installation-specific mission and organization requirements. This program provides a systematic process for the assessment of and planning for the development, training, and education required to increase the employees' competence in the procurement work functions. It includes the agency-wide basic knowledge and skills by career field and level upon which individual and organizational development plans are developed. Also, it provides a system that is compatible with other human resource management and development systems, processes, and activities. The compatibility and linkage are important in fostering the dual responsibility of the individual and the organization in the career development process.

  20. 14 CFR 1221.103 - Establishment of the NASA Insignia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ..., NASA Program Identifiers, NASA Flags, and the Agency's Unified Visual Communications System § 1221.103... approved by the Commission of Fine Arts and the NASA Administrator. It symbolizes NASA's role in... visual communications formerly reserved for the NASA Logotype. The NASA Insignia shall be used as set...

  1. 14 CFR 1221.102 - Establishment of the NASA Seal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 5 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Establishment of the NASA Seal. 1221.102 Section 1221.102 Aeronautics and Space NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION THE NASA SEAL AND OTHER DEVICES, AND THE CONGRESSIONAL SPACE MEDAL OF HONOR NASA Seal, NASA Insignia, NASA Logotype, NASA...

  2. 14 CFR 1221.106 - Establishment of the NASA Flag.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 5 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Establishment of the NASA Flag. 1221.106 Section 1221.106 Aeronautics and Space NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION THE NASA SEAL AND OTHER DEVICES, AND THE CONGRESSIONAL SPACE MEDAL OF HONOR NASA Seal, NASA Insignia, NASA Logotype, NASA...

  3. 14 CFR 1221.109 - Use of the NASA Seal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 5 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Use of the NASA Seal. 1221.109 Section 1221.109 Aeronautics and Space NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION THE NASA SEAL AND OTHER DEVICES, AND THE CONGRESSIONAL SPACE MEDAL OF HONOR NASA Seal, NASA Insignia, NASA Logotype, NASA Program...

  4. 14 CFR 1221.113 - Use of the NASA Flags.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 5 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Use of the NASA Flags. 1221.113 Section 1221.113 Aeronautics and Space NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION THE NASA SEAL AND OTHER DEVICES, AND THE CONGRESSIONAL SPACE MEDAL OF HONOR NASA Seal, NASA Insignia, NASA Logotype, NASA Program...

  5. Biophysics of NASA radiation quality factors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cucinotta, Francis A.

    2015-01-01

    NASA has implemented new radiation quality factors (QFs) for projecting cancer risks from space radiation exposures to astronauts. The NASA QFs are based on particle track structure concepts with parameters derived from available radiobiology data, and NASA introduces distinct QFs for solid cancer and leukaemia risk estimates. The NASA model was reviewed by the US National Research Council and approved for use by NASA for risk assessment for International Space Station missions and trade studies of future exploration missions to Mars and other destinations. A key feature of the NASA QFs is to represent the uncertainty in the QF assessments and evaluate the importance of the QF uncertainty to overall uncertainties in cancer risk projections. In this article, the biophysical basis for the probability distribution functions representing QF uncertainties was reviewed, and approaches needed to reduce uncertainties were discussed. (author)

  6. Biophysics of NASA radiation quality factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cucinotta, Francis A

    2015-09-01

    NASA has implemented new radiation quality factors (QFs) for projecting cancer risks from space radiation exposures to astronauts. The NASA QFs are based on particle track structure concepts with parameters derived from available radiobiology data, and NASA introduces distinct QFs for solid cancer and leukaemia risk estimates. The NASA model was reviewed by the US National Research Council and approved for use by NASA for risk assessment for International Space Station missions and trade studies of future exploration missions to Mars and other destinations. A key feature of the NASA QFs is to represent the uncertainty in the QF assessments and evaluate the importance of the QF uncertainty to overall uncertainties in cancer risk projections. In this article, the biophysical basis for the probability distribution functions representing QF uncertainties was reviewed, and approaches needed to reduce uncertainties were discussed. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  7. Flexible Electronics Development Supported by NASA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baumann, Eric

    2014-01-01

    The commercial electronics industry is leading development in most areas of electronics for NASA applications; however, working in partnership with industry and the academic community, results from NASA research could lead to better understanding and utilization of electronic materials by the flexible electronics industry. Innovative ideas explored by our partners in industry and the broader U.S. research community help NASA execute our missions and bring new American products and services to the global technology marketplace. [Mike Gazarik, associate administrator for Space Technology, NASA Headquarters, Washington DC] This presentation provides information on NASA needs in electronics looking towards the future, some of the work being supported by NASA in flexible electronics, and the capabilities of the Glenn Research Center supporting the development of flexible electronics.

  8. NASA's Applied Sciences for Water Resources

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doorn, Bradley; Toll, David; Engman, Ted

    2011-01-01

    The Earth Systems Division within NASA has the primary responsibility for the Earth Science Applied Science Program and the objective to accelerate the use of NASA science results in applications to help solve problems important to society and the economy. The primary goal of the Earth Science Applied Science Program is to improve future and current operational systems by infusing them with scientific knowledge of the Earth system gained through space-based observation, assimilation of new observations, and development and deployment of enabling technologies, systems, and capabilities. This paper discusses one of the major problems facing water resources managers, that of having timely and accurate data to drive their decision support tools. It then describes how NASA?s science and space based satellites may be used to overcome this problem. Opportunities for the water resources community to participate in NASA?s Water Resources Applications Program are described.

  9. NASA Earthdata Forums: An Interactive Venue for Discussions of NASA Data and Earth Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hearty, Thomas J., III; Acker, James; Meyer, Dave; Northup, Emily A.; Bagwell, Ross E.

    2017-01-01

    We demonstrate how students and teachers can register to use the NASA Earthdata Forums. The NASA Earthdata forums provide a venue where registered users can pose questions regarding NASA Earth science data in a moderated forum, and have their questions answered by data experts and scientific subject matter experts connected with NASA Earth science missions and projects. Since the forums are also available for research scientists to pose questions and discuss pertinent topics, the NASA Earthdata Forums provide a unique opportunity for students and teachers to gain insight from expert scientists and enhance their knowledge of the many different ways that NASA Earth observations can be used in research and applications.

  10. NASA University Program Management Information System

    Science.gov (United States)

    2000-01-01

    As basic policy, NASA believes that colleges and universities should be encouraged to participate in the nation's space and aeronautics program to the maximum extent practicable. Indeed, universities are considered as partners with government and industry in the nation's aerospace program. NASA:s objective is to have them bring their scientific, engineering, and social research competence to bear on aerospace problems and on the broader social, economic, and international implications of NASA's technical and scientific programs. It is expected that, in so doing, universities will strengthen both their research and their educational capabilities to contribute more effectively to the national well-being. NASA field codes and certain Headquarters program offices provide funds for those activities in universities which contribute to the mission needs of that particular NASA element. Although NASA has no predetermined amount of money to devote to university activities, the effort funded each year is substantial. This annual report is one means of documenting the NASA-university relationship, frequently denoted, collectively, as NASA's University Program. This report is consistent with agency accounting records, as the data is obtained from NASA:s Financial and Contractual Status (FACS) System, operated by the Financial Management Division and the Procurement Office. However, in accordance with interagency agreements, the orientation differs from that required for financial or procurement purposes. Any apparent discrepancies between this report and other NASA procurement or financial reports stem from the selection criteria for the data.* This report was prepared by the Education Division/FE, Office of Human Resources and Education, using a management information system which was modernized during FY 1993.

  11. Institutional Support : Ethiopian Development Research Institute ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    The Ethiopian Development Research Institute (EDRI) was established in 1999 and became operational in 2003 as a semi-autonomous organization accountable to ... International Water Resources Association, in close collaboration with IDRC, is holding a webinar titled “Climate change and adaptive water management: ...

  12. The NASA Air Traffic Management Ontology (atmonto)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The NASA ATM (Air Traffic Management) Ontology describes classes, properties, and relationships relevant to the domain of air traffic management, and represents...

  13. Semantic-Web Technology: Applications at NASA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ashish, Naveen

    2004-01-01

    We provide a description of work at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) on building system based on semantic-web concepts and technologies. NASA has been one of the early adopters of semantic-web technologies for practical applications. Indeed there are several ongoing 0 endeavors on building semantics based systems for use in diverse NASA domains ranging from collaborative scientific activity to accident and mishap investigation to enterprise search to scientific information gathering and integration to aviation safety decision support We provide a brief overview of many applications and ongoing work with the goal of informing the external community of these NASA endeavors.

  14. NASA Resources for Educators and Public

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morales, Lester

    2012-01-01

    A variety of NASA Classroom Activities, Educator Guides, Lithographs, Posters and more are available to Pre ]service and In ]service Educators through Professional Development Workshops. We are here for you to engage, demonstrate, and facilitate the use of educational technologies, the NASA Website, NASA Education Homepage and more! We are here for you to inspire you by providing in-service and pre- service training utilizing NASA curriculum support products. We are here for you to partner with your local, state, and regional educational organizations to better educate ALL! NASA AESP specialists are experienced professional educators, current on education issues and familiar with the curriculum frameworks, educational standards, and systemic architecture of the states they service. These specialists provide engaging and inspiring student presentations and teacher training right at YOUR school at no cost to you! Experience free out-of-this-world interactive learning with NASA's Digital Learning Network. Students of all ages can participate in LIVE events with NASA Experts and Education Specialists. The Exploration Station provides NASA educational programs that introduce the application of Science, Technology, Engineering, & Mathematics, to students. Students participate in a variety of hands-on activities that compliment related topics taught by the classroom teacher. NASA KSC ERC can create Professional Development Workshops for teachers in groups of fifteen or more. Education/Information Specialists also assist educators in developing lessons to meet Sunshine State and national curriculum standards.

  15. NASA tire/runway friction projects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yager, Thomas J.

    1995-01-01

    The paper reviews several aspects of NASA Langley Research Center's tire/runway friction evaluations directed towards improving the safety and economy of aircraft ground operations. The facilities and test equipment used in implementing different aircraft tire friction studies and other related aircraft ground performance investigations are described together with recent workshop activities at NASA Wallops Flight Facility. An overview of the pending Joint NASA/Transport Canada/FM Winter Runway Friction Program is given. Other NASA ongoing studies and on-site field tests are discussed including tire wear performance and new surface treatments. The paper concludes with a description of future research plans.

  16. NASA spinoffs to energy and the environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilbert, Ray L.; Lehrman, Stephen A.

    1989-01-01

    Thousands of aerospace innovations have found their way into everyday use, and future National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) missions promise to provide many more spinoff opportunities. Each spinoff has contributed some measure of benefit to the national economy, productivity, or lifestyle. In total, these spinoffs represent a substantial dividend on the national investment in aerospace research. Along with examples of the many terrestrial applications of NASA technology to energy and the environment, this paper presents the mechanisms by which NASA promotes technology transfer. Also discussed are new NASA initiatives in superconductivity research, global warming, and aeropropulsion.

  17. The NASA Ames Life Sciences Data Archive: Biobanking for the Final Frontier

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rask, Jon; Chakravarty, Kaushik; French, Alison J.; Choi, Sungshin; Stewart, Helen J.

    2017-01-01

    The NASA Ames Institutional Scientific Collection involves the Ames Life Sciences Data Archive (ALSDA) and a biospecimen repository, which are responsible for archiving information and non-human biospecimens collected from spaceflight and matching ground control experiments. The ALSDA also manages a biospecimen sharing program, performs curation and long-term storage operations, and facilitates distribution of biospecimens for research purposes via a public website (https:lsda.jsc.nasa.gov). As part of our best practices, a tissue viability testing plan has been developed for the repository, which will assess the quality of samples subjected to long-term storage. We expect that the test results will confirm usability of the samples, enable broader science community interest, and verify operational efficiency of the archives. This work will also support NASA open science initiatives and guides development of NASA directives and policy for curation of biological collections.

  18. Texas Heart Institute

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... of seminars and conferences. Resources Texas Heart Institute Journal Scientific Publications Library & Learning Resources Resources for Physicians Fellowships & Residencies School of Perfusion Technology THI Spotlight Check out the ...

  19. Northeast Utilities' participation in the Kaman/NASA wind power program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lotker, M.

    1975-01-01

    The role of Northeast Utilities in the Kaman/NASA large wind generator study is reviewed. The participation falls into four principal areas: (1) technical assistance; (2) economic analysis; (3) applications; and (4) institutional and legal. A model for the economic viability of wind power is presented.

  20. Regional Super ESPC Saves Energy and Dollars at NASA's Johnson Space Center

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Federal Energy Management Program

    2001-01-01

    This case study about energy saving performance contacts (ESPCs) presents an overview of how the NASA's Johnson Space Flight Center established an ESPC contract and the benefits derived from it. The Federal Energy Management Program instituted these special contracts to help federal agencies finance energy-saving projects at their facilities