Status Report

ASGSR Ken Souza Memorial Spaceflight Research Program

By SpaceRef Editor
March 5, 2020
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The Ken Souza Memorial Student Spaceflight Research Program honors the memory of ASGSR’s long-time friend and leader by encouraging the next generation of student investigators to develop your own ideas for the future of gravitational research.  

Student members of ASGSR — high school, undergraduate, and graduate – are encouraged to develop creative research proposals in the fields of space life and physical sciences, pairing your experiment with a public outreach plan to share the excitement of the field with others. 

The top proposal will receive a free spaceflight for your payload on Blue Origin’s New Shepard rocket in 2017 and a $1,000 grant to prepare for your flight.

To get started:

  1. Identify a faculty mentor: Just as Ken served as a mentor and guide for so many of us in the field, each student proposal needs a mentor to provide scientific, budgetary, and programmatic support.
  2. Develop your idea: What research do you envision that could be conducted in ~3 minutes of microgravity?  How would you engage the public around your ideas, process, and/or results?
  3. Write your proposal: Download this package.  We’re looking for a succinct (2-3 page) description of your idea – the why, the what, and the how – plus a budget and schedule.
  4. Submit your proposal:  Complete proposals should be collected into a single PDF and submitted via email to no later than June 3, 2020.  Your faculty mentor will need to sign off on this before submission (and your institution may need to authorize as well—please discuss this with your advisor!).

ASGSR and Blue Origin representatives will judge the submitted proposals on the basis of scientific/technical merit, outreach creativity, and feasibility.  The winner will be announced at the next ASGSR Annual Meeting.  The winning payload is expected to fly on New Shepardin 2021.  The winning student will deliver a final report to ASGSR, outlining the research and outreach undertaken, and be offered the honor of presenting at a future ASGSR Annual Meeting. 

For more information about Blue Origin, please visit

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SpaceRef staff editor.