Interplanetary Initiative pilot projects arise from immersive workshops using the "big questions" teaming method. During these workshops, teams are forged, project ideas are born and the path to secure annual seed funding from the initiative is paved.

NASA Arizona Space Grant Intern Students Contribute to Interplanetary Initiative’s Pilot Project Program

The Interplanetary Initiative at Arizona State University unites academia, industry and government to launch space research projects with tangible real-world impact. These collaborative efforts have given rise to a series of pilot projects, which engage broadly across the ASU ecosystem and extend globally for maximum impact.

The projects arise from immersive workshops using the “big questions” teaming method. The method is designed to drive cross-sector innovation, using structures and incentives that support teams, goals and outcomes. During these workshops, teams are forged, project ideas are born and the path to secure annual seed funding from the initiative is paved.


Read the full article on the Arizona State University News Page.

Author Credit: ASU News

Image Credit: Interplanetary Initiative

Professional Headshot of Madison Davis

Wyoming and Oregon Space Grant Consortia Alumna Researcher Speaks on High Altitude Ballooning

Southwestern Oregon Community College welcomes guests of all ages for a free lecture “High Altitude Balloons, Microbes, and Bobcats: Finding Your Passions Through the SPEAR (Space Physics Engineering Atmospheric Research) Research Team” by Southwestern Alum Madison Davis.

Join us on the evening of Thursday, November 2, 2023, at 6:30 pm in the Umpqua Hall lecture room 184 on the Coos Campus, 1988 Newmark Ave.

Madison Davis from The University of Wyoming and SWOCC SPEAR Alumni will be talking about how her experiences with the SPEAR research team and Oregon NASA Space Grant Consortium (OSGC) geared her to pursue opportunities with the Wyoming NASA Space Grant and other research disciplines. Although she did not pursue a degree in physics or astronomy, she says she was thrilled to be able to participate in atmospheric research that incorporated her passion of microbiology.

Read the full article on “The World” website.

Author Credit: The World

Image Credit: he World

WISGC Director, Kevin Crosby, being interviewed with NASA posters in the background

Wisconsin Space Grant Consortium Lead Institution – Carthage College – Highlighted by CBS

KENOSHA, Wis. (CBS 58) — The 58 Hometowns tour is taking a close look at another historic educational institution within your hometowns, and this time, it’s a little south, about halfway between Chicago and Milwaukee: Carthage College.

Natalie Shepherd will showcase Carthage on CBS 58 news on Tuesday and Thursday, featuring the school during a time that is particularly exciting on campus, as it gears up for its 149th annual Christmas Festival this weekend.

Beyond the joy of music, Natalie will also showcase some of the more unique aspects of Carthage’s academic portfolio, including its status as the school heading the state’s NASA Space Grant Consortium, leading the way on many Space Science initiatives from childhood through adulthood.

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Rendered from a digital terrain model, this image shows Ganges Chasma, a deep canyon on the eastern end of Valles Marineris, the largest canyon system not just on Mars, but in the entire solar system.

NASA Arizona Space Grant Science Writing Intern Story – Digital terrain models zero in on Martian surface

Picture soaring over a rugged canyon on another world, strapped into an imaginary hang glider. Or getting a bird’s eye view of craters that stretch on for miles and following along the same paths as the robotic rovers that have explored the surface of Mars. All of this is possible – virtually – thanks to specialists at the University of Arizona’s Lunar and Planetary Laboratory.

A team at the Lunar and Planetary Laboratory has created realistic terrain models of Mars’ surface using specialized software and high-resolution images taken from space. Known as digital terrain models, or DTMs, these renderings allow mission planners to examine landing sites for landers and rovers and scout routes across the alien terrain, laying the groundwork for ongoing and future Mars exploration campaigns.

Read the full article on the University of Arizona News Page.

Author Credit: Penny Duran, NASA Space Grant Science Writing Intern, University Communications

Image Credit: Kevin Gill, JPL-Caltech

Loral O'Hara floating in the SOFIA airplane, which simulates microgravity through flying parabolic trajectories.

Kentucky Space Grant Consortium Alumna Flew to the ISS on Expedition 69

KU Engineering alumna Loral O’Hara arrived at the International Space Station on Sept. 15, joining the crew of Expedition 69.The fourth Jayhawk astronaut and KU’s first woman astronaut, she graduated from NASA’s astronaut candidate program in 2017.

She will stay on the space station for six months, according to NASA.

Chair of Aerospace Engineering Richard Hale taught three of O’Hara’s classes during her time at KU.

“What stood out for her is her passion for being an astronaut because she said that was her goal as a freshman,” Hale said. “And she stuck to that goal, had a long term plan.”

Read the full article on The University Daily Kansan.

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Image Credit: NASA

Student wearing glasses, pink sweatshirt, and blue plastic gloves, conducts experiments with plants in a classroom.

NASA Space Grant Supports K-12 Teams in “Plant the Moon” Challenge

In May, Frederic A. Priff Elementary School students, guided by teacher Brent Cunningham, won an award for the Best Crop Growth in the Elementary School division of the competition in the Plant the Moon competition, sponsored by organizations such as the Institute of Competition Sciences, NASA SSERVI and the Space Grant Consortium.

Cunningham described the work that he is doing with his fifth- and sixth-grade students:

“During the course of the year, we focused heavily on planetary science, the development of life on the early Earth, and the needs of living things. During the winter, I found a competitive science program called Plant the Moon through the Institute of Competition Sciences. This program sought to challenge elementary students and above with the task of growing viable crops in lunar or Martian regolith simulant. The program also collaborates with NASA’s Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI) and is supported by the NASA Space Grant Consortium and the Mosser Lee Company (through Soil Master). It contained over 700 teams from five different nations.


Read the full article on the New Jersey Education Association website.


Author Credit: NJEA

Image Credit: NJEA

A close-up image of the asteroid Ida taken by NASA's Galileo spacecraft. Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA

Arizona Space Grant Consortium Alumni – The “Asteroid Hunter” Book to be Released in 2024

Engineering students practice launching a tethered high-altitude balloon Sept. 23 on the Macon campus.

NASA Space Grant Supports Students in Nationwide Eclipse Ballooning Project

A Mercer University team of engineering students will launch a high-altitude balloon into near space during the Oct. 14 annular solar eclipse, as part of a nationwide NASA mission. In an annular solar eclipse, the sun’s outer edges can be seen as a bright ring around the moon.

The team will broadcast on NASA TV live, high-resolution video of the eclipse and collect data that will help scientists measure the eclipse’s disturbance to Earth’s atmosphere, said Dr. Anthony Choi, professor of electrical and computer engineering.

The mission is part of the Nationwide Eclipse Ballooning Project, which includes 75 participating institutions and over 750 students. Mercer is among about 30 teams participating in the engineering track, Dr. Choi said.


Read the full article on the Mercer University website.

Author Credit: Jennifer Falk

Image Credit: Photo courtesy Ashley Tyler


Connecticut Space Grant Supports Undergraduate Research Awards

Trinity College engineering majors Kevin Clark ’23 and Ananya Swamy ’23 recently received student project grant awards from the NASA Connecticut Space Grant Consortium (CTSGC).

Working on their senior capstone projects this year, the students have the opportunity to develop innovative engineering projects with the help of their group members, project advisers, and now the added support of NASA grant funds. The CTSGC is a federal program that provides funding and internship opportunities for students and faculty in Connecticut.

As the representatives for their projects, Clark—a physics and engineering major with a concentration in mechanical engineering—and Swamy—an engineering major with a concentration in computer engineering—submitted their grant proposals in October 2022. Clark received a $1,500 grant for his group’s project, “Geothermal Energy Systems,” and Swamy received a $1,075 grant for her group’s project, “Muscle Activation Visualization System for Microgravity Environments.”

Read the full article on the Trinity College website.

Image and Author Credit: Trinity College


NASA astronaut and Expedition 68 Flight Engineer Stephen Bowen is pictured conducting maintenance activities during his first week aboard the International Space Station. This is Bowen’s fourth visit to the orbital outpost. Credits: NASA

Wyoming Space Grant Consortium Hosts State’s First-Ever ISS Downlink

Students from Wyoming will have an opportunity this week to hear from NASA astronauts aboard the International Space Station during the state’s first Earth-to-space call.

NASA astronaut Steve Bowen will answer prerecorded questions from students living in Laramie, Wyoming. The event is hosted by the Wyoming Space Grant consortia, the University of Wyoming, and the local Big Brothers and Big Sisters of America.

The agency aired the downlink live at 10:25 a.m. EDT on Wednesday, July 19, on NASA Television, the NASA app, and the agency’s website.

Read the full article on the NASA website.

Author Credit: Katherine Brown

Image Credit: NASA