The Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS), the nonprofit organization managing research onboard the International Space Station (ISS) U.S. National Laboratory, today announced a four-week contest titled “What Would You Send to the ISS?”, which is open to the general public for submissions. Unlike Requests for Proposals CASIS has previously released, submissions for this contest can simply be ideas or concepts, not precise proposals for research. The contest runs through September 16, 2013, just in time to get your students’ creative juices flowing.
To learn more about this contest and how to submit an idea, visit http://www.iss-casis.org/Opportunities/Solicitations/RFIYourIdeaInSpace.aspx
Be sure to check out all of the ISS-related NASA Now classroom videos and featured lessons on the NES Virtual Campus. Just log into the Virtual Campus and search for “ISS” to see the list of 16 classroom-ready resources to inspire you and your students.
Students worldwide have an opportunity to name an asteroid from which an upcoming NASA mission will return samples to Earth. Scheduled to launch in 2016, the mission is called the Origins-Spectral Interpretation-Resource Identification-Security-Regolith Explorer, or OSIRIS-REx. The competition is open to students under age 18. Each contestant can submit one name, up to 16 characters long. Entries must include a short explanation and rationale for the name. The contest deadline is Dec. 2, 2012.
For contest rules, guidelines, and application visit: http://planetary.org/name.
For more information about the OSIRIS-REx mission, visit: http://osiris-rex.lpl.arizona.edu.
The Cassini Scientist for a Day essay contest is open to all grade 5-12 students in the United States.
Students may work alone or in groups of up to four students. They write an essay of up to 500 words about one of three possible imaging targets (Saturn’s small moon, Pan; Saturn’s F Ring, or Saturn and its Rings) that the Cassini spacecraft orbiting Saturn can take this fall. Students justify their choice as to which they think would potentially yield the best science.
Winners are invited to participate in a teleconference with Cassini scientists from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Winning essays will be posted on the Cassini website.
The contest deadline is Oct. 24, 2012 at noon, PDT. Teachers must submit their students’ essays online.
NASA has opened registration for the 2011 OPTIMUS PRIME Spinoff Award Contest. Featuring OPTIMUS PRIME, the leader of the popular TRANSFORMERS brand, the contest highlights spinoffs from NASA technologies that are used on Earth. The goal is to help students understand the benefits of NASA technology to their daily lives. Last year’s contest was open to students in grades 3-8 and resulted in 76 video submissions from over 190 students in 31 states.
For 2011, the OPTIMUS PRIME Spinoff Award Contest has been expanded to include students in grades 3-12. Each student, or group of students, will submit a three- to five-minute video on a selected NASA spinoff technology listed in NASA’s 2010 “Spinoff” publication. Videos must demonstrate an understanding of the NASA spinoff technology and the associated NASA mission, as well as the commercial application and public benefit associated with the spinoff technology.
Participants must register for the contest by Jan. 3, 2012.
Video entries are due Jan. 17, 2012.Video entries will be posted on the NASA YouTube channel, and the public will be responsible for the first round of judging. The top five submissions from each of the three grade groups (Elementary [3rd-5th], Middle [6th-8th] and High School [9th-12th]) will advance for final judging. A NASA panel will select a winning entry from each group. Among other prizes, a crystal OPTIMUS PRIME Spinoff Award Trophy will be given to winners at a special awards ceremony being held in Florida in April 2012. The innovators associated with the NASA technology highlighted in the winning videos also will receive trophies, as will their commercial partners.
Link to the NES Virtual Campus home page.
NASA is offering students the opportunity to compete in two microgravity challenges: “Dropping In a Microgravity Environment,” or DIME, and “What If No Gravity?” or WING.
DIME is a team competition for high school students in the ninth through 12th grades. WING is a competition for student teams from the fifth through eighth grades. Both are project-oriented activities that last throughout the school year for the selected teams.
DIME and WING are open to student teams from all 50 states, Washington, Puerto Rico, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Each team must have an adult supervisor, such as a teacher, parent or technical consultant. Teams may be from any type of organization or club, such as a science class, a group of friends, a scout troop or youth group.
Proposals are due by Nov. 1. A panel of NASA scientists and engineers will evaluate and select the top-ranked proposals by Dec. 1. The winning teams will design and build the experiments that will be conducted in the 2.2-Second Drop Tower at NASA’s Glenn Research Center in Cleveland.
The 79-foot tower gets its name because when an experiment is “dropped” into it, the package experiences weightlessness, or microgravity, for 2.2 seconds. Researchers from around the world use this tower to study the effects of microgravity on physical phenomena, such as combustion and fluid dynamics, and to develop new technology for future space missions.
The top four DIME teams will receive an expense-paid trip to Glenn in March 2012 to conduct their experiments, review the results with NASA personnel and tour the center’s facilities. All DIME participants visiting NASA must be U.S. citizens.
Four additional DIME teams, and up to 30 WING teams, will be selected to build their experiments and ship them to Glenn for NASA testing. These experiments and the resulting data will be returned to the teams, so they can prepare reports about their findings.
Link to the NES Virtual Campus.
If you’re 14 to 18 years old, come up with a science experiment for space and upload a video explaining it to YouTube. If your idea wins, it will be performed on the International Space Station and live streamed on YouTube to the world. And you’ll get some out-of-this-world prizes, too.
Can plants survive beyond the Earth? Could proteins in space reveal the mysteries of life? Science in micro gravity can help unlock the answers. The countdown’s begun.
YouTube Space Lab
NASA has a class assignment for U.S. students: help the agency give the twin GRAIL mission spacecraft headed to orbit around the moon new names.
The naming contest is open to students in kindergarten through 12th grade at schools in the United States. Entries must be submitted by teachers using an online entry form. Length of submissions can range from a short paragraph to a 500-word essay. The entry deadline is Nov. 11.
“Because It Flew,” or BIF, is a free educational program that introduces students in grades 4-12 (ages 9-17) to the impact of the Space Shuttle Program on our planet and people. This engaging and informative project commemorates the 30-year history of the shuttle program. BIF consists of two elements: optional educational activities and the NASA Space Shuttle Art Competition. Entries in the competition are due Aug. 5, 2011. BIF is a joint education initiative of NASA, the National Institute of Aerospace and USA Today Education.