Recently in the Johnson Space Center Category


Video: Space Debris In Motion

The animation depicts the distribution and movement of man-made objects orbiting Earth.

The third free flight of a Morpheus prototype lander was conducted Jan. 16, 2014 at the north end of the Shuttle Landing Facility at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

"The eXploration Habitat (X-Hab) Academic Innovation Challenge is a university-level competition designed to engage and retain students in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) disciplines. College and university students now have a chance to help design a deep-space habitat. The Exploration Habitat (X-Hab) Academic Innovation Challenge, first offered in 2010, is now accepting applications for the 2014 challenge. But they need to act fast. May 1, 2013 is the deadline for student teams to submit their plans for designing, manufacturing, assembling and developing test systems for use on NASA's deep-space habitat prototype." More

"The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Headquarters Office of Education, in cooperation with the NASA Johnson Space Center and other NASA Centers, is releasing a Cooperative Agreement Notice (CAN) for NASA Internships. On or about January 16, 2013, this CAN will be available electronically through the NASA Solicitation and Proposal Integrated Review and Evaluation System (NSPIRES) at http://nspires.nasaprs.com/ and then clicking the link through the menu listings "Solicitations" to "Open Solicitations." Institutions eligible to respond to this CAN are limited to higher education institutions, nonprogit organizations, and consortia or groups of organizations and institutions serving higher education students, whose mission includes capturing student interest and/or improving student performance in science, technology, engineering, mathematics (STEM) or related fields. The estimated annual value of the award is $3,000,000 to $10,000,000 per year, for a period of performance not to exceed 5 years." More

"NASA has released a Request for Information (RFI) to explore the potential interest and use of its unique facilities, labs and technical expertise for structural testing at the agency's Johnson Space Center in Houston. The facilities and capabilities could support commercial, government and academic activities, and possibly lead to new technology developments. The RFI is seeking responses from prospective partners interested in using Johnson's extensive testing facilities to provide high-performance solutions for a variety of structural testing in diverse industries, including aerospace. These solutions can help businesses meet their challenges by helping engineers develop deeper insight in their materials and building processes." More

Warp Drive Research at NASA JSC

"This paper will begin with a short review of the Alcubierre warp drive metric and describes how the phenomenon might work based on the original paper. The canonical form of the metric was developed and published in [6] which provided key insight into the field potential and boost for the field which remedied a critical paradox in the original Alcubierre concept of operations. A modified concept of operations based on the canonical form of the metric that remedies the paradox is presented and discussed. The idea of a warp drive in higher dimensional space-time (manifold) will then be briefly considered by comparing the null-like geodesics of the Alcubierre metric to the Chung-Freese metric to illustrate the mathematical role of hyperspace coordinates. The net effect of using a warp drive "technology" coupled with conventional propulsion systems on an exploration mission will be discussed using the nomenclature of early mission planning. Finally, an overview of the warp field interferometer test bed being implemented in the Advanced Propulsion Physics Laboratory: Eagleworks (APPL:E) at the Johnson Space Center will be detailed. While warp field mechanics has not had a "Chicago Pile" moment, the tools necessary to detect a modest instance of the phenomenon are near at hand." More

NASA Set To Host Future Female Explorers

"Eighty-four female high school students from 29 states will plan a simulated mission to Mars and experience life as an engineer or scientist when NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston hosts two events focused on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in June and July. The Women in STEM High School Aerospace Scholars project, or WISH, is sponsoring two six-day summer camps for rising high school seniors."

NEEMO and Public Engagement

NASA's Undersea Mission Submerges in the Atlantic

"An international crew of aquanauts is settling into its home on the ocean floor, where the team will spend 12 days testing concepts for a potential asteroid mission. The expedition is the 16th excursion of the NASA Extreme Environment Mission Operations (NEEMO). The crew of four began its mission in the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Aquarius Reef Base undersea research habitat off the coast of Key Largo, Fla., at 11:04 a.m. EDT Monday."

Challenger Center to host Exciting Interactive Webcasts with NASA NEEMO

NASA Selects Five Universities For 2013 X-Hab Innovation Challenge

"Five universities have been selected to participate in the 2013 Exploration Habitat (X-Hab) Academic Innovation Challenge led by NASA and the National Space Grant Foundation. These universities will design habitat systems, concepts and technologies that could be used in future deep space habitats. The selection is the first milestone in a year-long process for these five teams. Throughout the 2012-2013 academic year, the teams will meet a series of milestones to design, manufacture, assemble and test their systems and concepts in cooperation with the NASA Advanced Exploration Systems (AES) Program's Habitation Systems Project team."

On April 2nd, the Morpheus team performed a successful ground level hot fire. The purpose of the ground level hot fire is to test the environmental conditions of the vehicle while the engine is fired from the surface. During a ground level hot fire the vehicle is chained to the ground while the engine is fired.

NASA Calls for Student-Designed Deep Space Habitat Proposals

"NASA is offering college and university students a chance to help design a deep space habitat. The Exploration Habitat (X-Hab) Academic Innovation Challenge is accepting applications for the 2013 challenge, inviting students to design, manufacture, assemble and test systems for use on NASA's deep space habitat prototype. Past projects have included an inflatable loft for crew sleeping quarters, plant growth systems and sample handling tools. This year, students in multiple disciplines can choose projects from a variety of possibilities, including photovoltaic solar arrays, a workstation to support human-robotic collaboration or a telepresence and holodeck conceptual system. Students will work together on potential solutions to needs future astronauts might have living and working outside Earth."

Community College Scholars Selected to Design Robotic Rovers

"Community college students will have the chance to design robotic rovers in cooperation with NASA. Ninety-two students from schools in 24 states have been selected to travel to a NASA center to develop rovers through the National Community College Aerospace Scholars program. The initiative provides hands-on opportunities to inspire interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) disciplines. Students will visit either NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., from May 1-3, or NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston from May 9-11. The teams will establish fictional companies pursuing Mars exploration. Each team will develop, design and build a prototype rover, then use their prototypes to navigate a course, collect rocks and water and return to a home base."

Teachers Get Weightless on NASA Jet

Teachers Fly Experiments on NASA Reduced Gravity Flights

"More than 70 teachers had an opportunity to experience what it feels like to float in space as they participated in the Reduced Gravity Education Flight Program at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston last week. The teachers flew aboard an aircraft that flies parabolic flight paths, which create brief periods of weightlessness. It is a key component of NASA's astronaut training protocol. The teachers were selected for the flights through NASA's Teaching from Space and Explorer School Programs. NASA Associate Administrator for Education and two-time space shuttle astronaut Leland Melvin also participated in some of the flights and shared first-hand with the participants his experiences in astronaut training."

Houston Space Business Incubator

Johnson Space Center and Houston Technology Center Partner for Entrepreneurs

"NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC) and the Houston Technology Center (HTC) have formed a strategic partnership to further expand HTC's mission of accelerating the growth of emerging technology companies in the Houston region and to further develop the insights required to support NASA's long-term goals of increasing private and public collaboration."

NASA Johnson Space Center Partners With Texas' Largest Tech Incubator and Accelerator

"The Houston Technology Center (HTC) and NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC) have formed a strategic partnership to further expand HTC's mission of accelerating the growth of emerging technology companies in the Houston region and to develop the insights required to support NASA's long-term goals of increasing private/public collaboration. NRG Energy - a strong supporter of Houston 's business community and diversified energy company - stepped up to support the effort with a $25,000 donation."

Liquid Sky at NASA

NASA's Liquid Galaxy: An Overview, open.NASA

"A few months back, Open.Gov Team Lead, Nick Skytland approached me with an idea to implement Google's Liquid Galaxy project at NASA. I was immediately intrigued by the idea, and set forth researching what would be involved. Nick and I collaborated with others at Johnson Space Center (JSC) to come up with a way to implement our own Liquid Galaxy. We also collaborated with people from other NASA centers to come up with ideas to extend the project's functionality, and to apply the same hardware to other activities. In the end, we came up with an exciting eight-display Liquid Galaxy "immersive cave" and a number of ideas to consider for the future."

Note: This Open Government Initiative project (with the support of NASA Forward Maker Camp and the JSC ICA) highlights the intersection of clustered computing, open source, data visualization, and space-is-awesome.

Keith's note: An interesting new website International Space Station Live!, hosted at JSC, is now online. It displays a variety of telemetry and data feeds from the ISS. Much of the data is realtime or close to real time and will offer people a chance to look over the shoulders of the people operating - and working aboard - the ISS.

NASA Seeks Undergraduates To Fly Research In Microgravity

"NASA is offering undergraduate students the opportunity to test an experiment in microgravity as part of the agency's Reduced Gravity Education Flight Program. The program is accepting proposals for two different flight experiences in 2012. Teams interested in conducting student-driven research should submit a letter of intent by Sept. 14. This step is optional, but serves as an introductory notice that a team plans to submit a proposal for the competition. Proposals for student-driven experiments are due Oct. 26, and selected teams will be announced Dec. 7. The actual flight experience will take place in June 2012."

"This notice is being issued as a Request for Quotations (RFQ) for the following rapid prototype machine: 1 EA ProJet HD 3000 Plus Professional 3D Printer." More info on NASA JSC procurement

"The ProJetTM HD 3000 3-D Production System offers the option of two modes, High Definition (HD) and Ultra High Definition (UHD), for applications ranging from prototypes and concepts to direct castable models. For direct castable models of fine jewelry and other components, the UHD mode is unmatched in its ability to handle delicate features and produce detailed parts and patterns. For precision models and prototypes, the high speed and exceptional surface quality of the standard HD mode is ideal. Rely on the HD mode everyday for a wide variety of applications including concept development, design verification, form-fit testing, and product presentations."

sp.ace at NASA JSC

"Welcome to "The Sp.ace". The Sp.ace is for people who are passionate about solving extraordinary problems. It's a space for people who envision a more open, participatory and collaborative space agency. It's a space that deserves the energy and creativity of those who inhabit it because it is adaptable, innovative and engaging. It's a space where challenging the normal rules of business is encouraged. It's a space where an electric current of innovation pulses through every activity, meeting, and conversation. Directions: The location is above the old Weightless Environment Training Facility (WETF) in Building 29. ..." More at open.nasa.gov

Do you like to build, tinker and try new things? Do you wish some days that you could just get your hands dirty and create something? Maker Camp is an internal pilot project focused on creating a culture of experimentation by offering individuals the chance to collaborate on quick, innovative projects that are good for the center and the agency. JSC will connect remotely and work collaboratively with teams at ARC to see what we can do together in a short, focused period of time.

Breakfast and overview is at 9 a.m., and project pitches and group selection are at 10 a.m. on Thursday Aug. 4 in Building 29 the sp.ace (please see http://www.opennasa.com/space/ for directions). Projects will be presented/demoed on Friday afternoon, Aug. 5. Watch http://open.nasa.gov/maker/ for live updates during the event.

The three competing universities are (1) Oklahoma State University; (2) University of Maryland; and (3) University of Wisconsin. All three have been in a year-long design, build, and test curriculum that produced this product. It has been a great inspiration and learning experience for these teams. Please join us for the competition. NASA JSC will have each team set-up, deploy, evaluate, and take down 3 consecutive weeks.

Media coverage time slots:

- Oklahoma State (6-10 Jun 2011): 9 Jun (Thursday) 2:00 - 4:00 pm Media Event
- University of Maryland (13-17 Jun 2011): 16 Jun (Thursday) 2:00 - 4:00 pm Media Event
- University of Wisconsin-Madison (20-24 Jun 2011): 23 Jun (Thursday) 2:00 - 4:00 pm Media Event

Websites:

- X-Hab sites: 2011-X Loft : http://www.spacegrant.org/xhab/2011
- 2012: http://www.spacegrant.org/xhab/
- HDU Public site: http://www.nasa.gov/exploration/analogs/hdu_project.html

NASA JSC Project Morpheus Update

Internal NASA memo: "Out in the open field at the new Morpheus launch pad. West of JSC Building 14. If all goes well and there is no Govt. shutdown, the series of test firings may begin sometime Monday. The rocket engine burns methane and oxygen and is pressurized with helium. Note the ground restraint straps to keep it from "wandering." This constraint is necessary since there is no active flight control system installed yet. There is ES Div. engineering support to this program, but very little publicity." More

Open Innovation Support at NASA JSC

NASA Solicitation: Open Innovation Support Services for Internal Collaboration Support Platform and Intermediary

"NASA/JSC has a requirement for Open Innovation Support Services for internal collaboration support platform and intermediary to provide the capability for NASA employees to collaborate within and across the NASA organizations promoting internal collaboration and the identification of solutions to internal challenges by internal personnel and expertise. NASA/JSC intends to purchase the items from InnoCentive, Inc. InnoCentive, Inc. has the required infrastructure and personnel required to support the internal based platform and has an experience base that included an internet based ".com" and an internal based platform. Use of any other system would require duplication of work and loss of existing infrastructure that has already been designed for NASA, tested, validated and approved. The loss of infrastructure cannot be recovered through competition without substantial duplication of time, costs and risk to timely and successful implementation." More

NASA Solicitation: Open Innovation Support Services for a Consortium Network Builder Platform Provider

"NASA/JSC plans to issue a Request for Proposal (RFP) for the following Commercial item/services: Open Innovation Support Services for a consortium/network builder platform provider to possess an extensive network of partners external to NASA to engage in collaboration in support of human spaceflight technology needs." More

NASA Solicitation: Open Innovation Support Services for an External Crowd Sourcing Platform

"NASA/JSC plans to issue a Request for Proposal (RFP) for the following Commercial item/services: Open Innovation Support Services for an external crowd sourcing platform that supports the ability to publically post challenges (external to NASA) and facilitate interaction with an extensive solver network." More

NASA's "Kids in Micro-g" challenge is accepting proposals from students in fifth through eighth grades to design a classroom experiment that also can be performed by astronauts aboard the International Space Station (ISS). Proposals are due by Dec. 8.

The experiments should examine the effect of weightlessness on various subjects: liquids, solids, the law of physics and humans. The experiments are expected to have observably different results in microgravity than in the classroom. The apparatus for the experiments must be constructed using materials from a special tool kit aboard the station. The kit contains items commonly found in classrooms for science experiments. The experiments must take 30 minutes or less to set up, run and take down.

By chance I was in Omaha this week when the news was announced that the X-38 was going on display in the Strategic Air & Space Museum there. What an interesting and out of the way place to display this remarkable device. My work schedule didn't allow me the luxury of a visit to the museum, but then I've seen the X-38 up close before.

Disclaimer: I was a member of an independent review team for the X-38 development for a short period of time.

JSC Wants To Build A Replicator

NASA JSC Solicitation: Hardware and Software Supporting the Maker Project

* Background - The Crew and Thermal Systems Division, EVA Tools Branch (EC7) at the Johnson Space Center seeks to acquire contract support for a software/hardware development project for NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston, TX. The project supported is entitled "MAKER" and is pursuing an advanced manufacturing concept being developed and evaluated for deployment in future space exploration architectures requiring manufacturing capability in the spaceflight/mission environment. The specific need to be addressed by replies to this effort is for control software and interface hardware for a capable of operating a kinematically unique 3 axis robotic arm subsystem within the MAKER system. The implementation of this software/hardware solution is currently limited to a laboratory environment at the Johnson Space Center, and does not require "Enterprise Resource Planning" (ERP) level implementation.

Challenge Everything

NASA JSC Advanced Planning Office Blog: Challenge Everything

"There is an interesting experiment happening at the Johnson Space Center. The basic question being addressed by this experiment is "what would happen if we could tap into the expertise of the 15,000 employees at JSC to solve any one of the difficult challenges that we are wrestling with?" Actually the experiment is also tapping the expertise at the other NASA Centers. The idea was a brainchild of the JSC Vision 2028 team and the Center Director's, Inclusion and Innovation council engagement teams. Called Project Blue Moon, it is a six month pilot to create an open collaboration environment across the NASA Community."

NASA Kicks Off Open Innovation Competition To Benefit Spaceflight

NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston kicked off an experimental programming competition today in conjunction with TopCoder, Inc. and researchers from Harvard Business School and London Business School. The competition, conducted for the center’s Space Life Sciences Directorate (SLSD), is aimed at developing algorithms that optimize medical kits for long-duration human space exploration.

"The Space Life Sciences strategy involves developing collaborative business models to drive innovation," said Dr. Jeffrey Davis, SLSD director. "This experimental competition is one example of our ongoing commitment to finding new approaches to problem solving and successfully managing our portfolio."