Space

June 10, 2013

NASA selects new suborbital payloads, total tops 100 experiments

NASA has selected 21 space technology payloads for flights on commercial reusable launch vehicles, balloons, and a commercial parabolic aircraft.

This latest selection represents the sixth cycle of NASA’s continuing call for payloads through an announcement of opportunity. †More than 100 technologies with test flights now have been facilitated through NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate’s Flight Opportunities Program.

“This new group of payloads, ranging from systems that support cubesats to new sensors technology for planetary exploration, represent the sorts of cutting-edge technologies that are naturally suited for testing during returnable flights to near-space,” said Michael Gazarik, NASA’s associate administrator for space technology in Washington. “NASA’s Flight Opportunities Program continues to mature this key technology development pipeline link, thanks to America’s commercial suborbital reusable vehicles providers.”

Fourteen of these new payloads will ride on parabolic aircraft flights, which provide brief periods of weightlessness. Two will fly on suborbital reusable launch vehicle test flights. Three will ride on high-altitude balloons that fly above 65,000 feet. An additional payload will fly on both a parabolic flight and a suborbital launch vehicle, and another will fly on both a suborbital launch vehicle and a high-altitude balloon platform. These payload flights are expected to take place now through 2015.

Flight opportunities currently include the Zero-G Corporation parabolic airplane under contract with the Reduced Gravity Office at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston; Near Space Corp. high-altitude balloons; and reusable launch vehicles from Armadillo Aerospace, Masten Space Systems, UP Aerospace and Virgin Galactic. Additional commercial suborbital flight vendors under contract to NASA, including XCOR and Whittinghill, also will provide flight services.

Payloads selected for flight on a parabolic aircraft are:

  • * “Technology Maturation of a Dual-Spinning Cubesat Bus,” Kerri Cahoy, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge
  • * “Testing Near-Infrared Neuromonitoring Devices for Detecting Cerebral Hemodynamic Changes in Parabolic Flight,” Gary Strangman, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston
  • * “Resilient Thermal Panel: Microgravity Effects on Isothermality of Structurally Embedded Two Dimensional Heat Pipes,” Andrew Williams, Air Force Research Laboratory, Albuquerque, N.M.
  •  ”Wireless Strain Sensing System for Space Structural Health Monitoring,” Haiying Huang, University of Texas, Austin
  •  ”Monitoring tissue oxygen saturation in microgravity,” Thomas Smith, Oxford University, United Kingdom
  •  ”Testing the deployment and rollout of the DragEN electrodynamic tether for Cubesats,” Jason Held, Saber Astronautics Australia Pty Ltd., Australia
  •  ”Creation of Titanium-Based Nanofoams in Reduced Gravity for Dye-Sensitized Solar Cell Production,” Kristen Scotti, Northwestern University, Evanston, Ill.
  •  ”Testing a Cubesat Attitude Control System in Microgravity Conditions,” Eric Bradley, University of Central Florida, Orlando
  •  ”Demonstration of Adjustable Fluidic Lens in Microgravity,” James Schwiegerling, University of Arizona, Tucson
  •  ”Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) in Microgravity,” Douglas Ebert, Wyle Laboratories, Houston
  •  ”DYMAFLEX: DYnamic MAnipulation FLight Experiment,” David Akin of University, Maryland, College Park
  •  ”Characterizing Cubesat Deployer Dynamics in a Microgravity Environment,” Kira Abercromby, California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo
  •  ”Demonstration of Food Processing Equipment,” Susana Carranza, Makel Engineering Inc., Chino, Calif.
  •  ”Advanced Optical Mass Measurement System,” Jason Reimuller, Mass Dynamix Inc., Longwood, Fla.

Payloads selected for flight on a suborbital reusable launch vehicle are:

  •  ”Precision Formation Flying Sensor,” Webster Cash, University of Colorado, Boulder
  •  ”Navigation Doppler Lidar Sensor Demonstration for Precision Landing on Solar System Bodies,” Farzin Amzajerdian, NASA’s Langley Research Center, Hampton, Va.

Payloads selected for flight on a high altitude balloon are:

  •  ”Planetary Atmosphere Minor Species Sensor,” Robert Peale, University of Central Florida, Orlando
  •  ”Satellite-Based ADS-B Operations Flight Test,” Russell Dewey, GSSL Inc., Tillamook, Ore.
  •  ”Low-Cost Suborbital Reusable Launch Vehicle (sRLV) Surrogate,” Timothy Lachenmeier, GSSL Inc.

One payload will be manifested†on a parabolic aircraft and a suborbital reusable launch vehicle:

  •  ”Real Time Conformational Analysis of Rhodopsin using Plasmon Waveguide Resonance Spectroscopy,” Victor Hruby, University of Arizona, Tucson.

One payload will be manifested† on a suborbital reusable launch vehicle and a high altitude balloon:

  • “Test of Satellite Communications Systems on-board Suborbital Platforms to provide low-cost data communications for Research Payloads, Payload Operators, and Space Vehicle Operators,” Brian Barnett, Satwest Consulting, Albuquerque, N.M.

NASA manages the Flight Opportunities manifest, matching payloads with flights, and will pay for payload integration and the flight costs for the selected payloads. No funds are provided for the development of the payloads.

NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate, is dedicated to innovating, developing, testing and flying hardware for use in the agency’s future missions. The Flight Opportunities Program is managed at NASA’s Dryden Flight Research Center in Edwards, Calif. NASA’s Ames Research Center at Moffett Field, Calif., manages the technology maturation activities for the program.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
NASA/JPL-Caltech image

NASA’s Mars spacecraft maneuvers to prepare for close comet flyby

NASA/JPL-Caltech image This graphic depicts the orbit of comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring as it swings around the sun in 2014. On Oct. 19, the comet will have a very close pass at Mars. Its nucleus will miss Mars by about 82,000 m...
 
 
Image courtesy of U.S. Bureau of Reclamation

Satellite study reveals parched U.S. West using up underground water

Image courtesy of U.S. Bureau of Reclamation The Colorado River Basin lost nearly 53 million acre feet of freshwater over the past nine years, according to a new study based on data from NASA’s GRACE mission. This is almost d...
 
 

NASA selects contract for mission support services at Ames

NASA has selected Wyle Laboratories, Inc., Houston, to support NASA’s flight programs and mission projects, providing support for multiple sustained project management, research and technology development capabilities that encompass all phases of mission and project lifecycles at the agency’s Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, Calif. The cost-plus-fixed-fee hybrid contract has a...
 

 
NASA, ESA, G. Bacon (STScI) and N. Madhusudhan (UC) image

Hubble finds three surprisingly dry exoplanets

NASA, ESA, G. Bacon (STScI) and N. Madhusudhan (UC) image This is an artistic illustration of the gas giant planet HD 209458b in the constellation Pegasus. To the surprise of astronomers, they have found much less water vapor i...
 
 
Air Force photograph

Budget cuts, growing threats affect space operations

Air Force photograph The Advanced Extremely High Frequency, or AEHF, system is a joint service satellite communications system that provides survivable, global, secure, protected and jam-resistant communications for high-priori...
 
 

NASA partners punctuate summer with spacecraft development advances

Spacecraft and rocket development is on pace this summer for NASA’s aerospace industry partners for the agency’s Commercial Crew Program as they progress through systems testing, review boards and quarterly sessions under their† Space Act Agreements with the agency. NASA engineers and specialists continue their review of the progress as the agency and partners move...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>