NASA Announces Micro-g Experiment Design Teams

NASA is offering undergraduate students an opportunity to participate in a new microgravity activity called Micro-g Neutral Buoyancy Experiment Design Teams (Micro-g NExT). The deadline for proposals is Jan. 28, 2015. Micro-g NExT challenges students to work in teams to design and build prototypes of spacewalking tools to be used by astronauts for spacewalk training in the Neutral Buoyancy Laboratory (NBL) at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston. Teams will be selected to participate in the experiential/hands-on learning portion and will travel to Houston to have their prototype tested in the simulated microgravity environment of the NBL-- a 6.2 million gallon indoor pool where NASA astronauts perform complex training activities in advance of their assigned space missions. This project coincides with the 50th anniversary of NASA extravehicular activity.

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Send Your Computer Code Into Space with Tim Peake

"Leading UK space organisations have joined forces with British ESA Astronaut Tim Peake and Raspberry Pi to offer students a chance to devise and code their own apps or experiment to run in space. Two Raspberry Pi computers are planned to be flown to the International Space Station (ISS) as part of Tim's 6 month mission and both will be connected to a new "Astro Pi" board, loaded with a host of sensors and gadgets. Launched today at an event held by the UK Space Agency, the Astro Pi competition will be officially opened at the BETT conference (21-24 January) and will be open to all primary and secondary school aged children who are resident in the United Kingdom. The competition will be supported by a comprehensive suite of teaching resources that are being developed by ESERO-UK and Raspberry Pi."

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NASA-USGS Data App Challenge

NASA in partnership with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is offering more than $35,000 in prizes to citizen scientists for ideas that make use of climate data to address vulnerabilities faced by the United States in coping with climate change. The Climate Resilience Data Challenge, conducted through the NASA Tournament Lab, a partnership with Harvard University hosted on Appirio/Topcoder, kicks off Monday, Dec 15 and runs through March 2015. The challenge supports the efforts of the White House Climate Data Initiative, a broad effort to leverage the federal government's extensive, freely available climate-relevant data resources to spur innovation and private-sector entrepreneurship in order to advance awareness of and preparedness for the impacts of climate change. The challenge was announced by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy Dec. 9.

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In recent years, crowdfunding has become a popular method of funding new technology or entertainment products, or artistic projects. The idea is that people or projects ask for many small donations from individuals who support the proposed work, rather than a large amount from a single source. Crowdfunding is usually done via an online portal or platform which handles the financial transactions involved. The Universe Awareness (UNAWE) programme decided to undertake a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign centring on the resource Universe in a Box2. In this article we present the lessons learned and best practices from that campaign.

Citizen Science Help Sought Locate Cities at Night From ISS Imagery

"Help us to georeference the position of cities which appear in the ISS images. We are members of the Group of Extragalactic Astrophysics and Astronomical Instrumentation from the of Universidad Coplutense de Madrid. Among our activities is a study of light pollution and the energy consumption derived from it. We use images taken from the International Space Station as part of our investigations, provided by Earth Science and Remote Sensing Unit, NASA-Johnson Space Center. "The Gateway to Astronaut Photography of Earth." To compare the images with the different light sources on the earth, we need to know the city's location. Due to the large number of images, we need your help. Some of these pictures are from unknown locations for us, and it is very difficult to identify them in the pictures. However, a lot of people around the world will know the cities. We need you to identify the cities and connect them with their position point on the map. This application allows you to do this."

More at Locate Cities from ISS by Universidad Coplutense de Madrid and at their FAQ page.

NASA Seeks Ultralightweight Core Materials

NASA Space Technology Game Changing Program Solicitation for Ultralightweight Core Materials for Efficient Load-Bearing Composite Sandwich Structures - NASA is seeking proposals to develop and manufacture ultralightweight materials for aerospace vehicles and structures of the future. Proposals will demonstrate lower-mass alternatives to honeycomb or foam cores currently used in composite sandwich structures. The goal of this Game Changing Development Program is to develop and demonstrate scalable and cost-effective manufacturing approaches to produce ultralightweight core materials both as flat panels and curved structures. The final products will have half or less the area density of conventional honeycomb cores, with equal or better mechanical properties.

Deadline Extended: Student Spaceflight Experiments Program

The National Center for Earth and Space Science Education and the Arthur C. Clarke Institute for Space Education, in partnership with NanoRacks LLC, announce an authentic science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM, opportunity for school districts across the U.S. and space station partner nations. The newest flight opportunity, Mission 8 to the International Space Station, or ISS, gives students across a community the ability to design and propose real experiments to fly in low-Earth orbit on the ISS. This opportunity is part of the Student Spaceflight Experiments Program, or SSEP.

Remote Sensing of Exoplanets

"A two day long winter school on Remote Sensing of Exoplanets will be held at our University on December 4th and 5th, aimed primarily at graduate students involved in hysperspectral remote sensing activities, physics and astronomy, geography. The winter school will provide an overview of the knowledge acquired during the past 20 years in the domain of exploration of exoplanets. It will review the different detection methods, their limitations, and the information provided on the orbital system and the planet itself, and how this information is helping our understanding of planet formation."

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