NASA “Science WOW!” Message – Feb. 14, 2018

Check out the latest edition of NASA’s “Science WOW!” — your source for NASA science opportunities for educators and students delivered “Weekly On Wednesday.”

Science WOW! banner

Science Always Starts With a Question …

This Week’s Question: Which Spacecraft Holds the Record for the Image Made Farthest From Earth?

Taken by the Voyager 1 spacecraft on Feb. 14, 1990, the famous “Pale Blue Dot” image of Earth has long held the record for most-distant image ever taken by a spacecraft. But last week, that record was broken twice! Click the link below to learn which spacecraft is the new deep space image-capturing champion.

Have You Seen This?

What do Olympic athletes and objects in space have in common? The answer is matter in motion, often in extreme examples. The AstrOlympics project explores the spectacular range of science that we can find both in the impressive feats of the Olympic Games and in cosmic phenomena throughout the universe.

To learn more and download printable posters, visit

Opportunities for Future Scientists of All Ages

Science Opportunities for Educators of Grades K-12

Science Opportunities for Higher Education and Informal Institutions


Opportunities for Future Scientists of All Ages

International Space Station Research Design Challenge: Capillary Effects on Liquids Exploratory Research Experiments
Audience: Students in Grades 8-12
Design Submission Deadlines: March 1, 2018

NASA and Portland State University in Oregon are challenging students in grades 8-12 to design microgravity experiments investigating capillary action, similar to those conducted on the space station. Teams or individuals create their own experiment using computer-aided design with a provided template and submit short proposals presenting the experiments. Selected experiments will be tested in the university’s 2.1-second drop tower, and video results will be available for analysis and reporting.

Design ideas are due March 1, 2018. For more information, visit

Please direct questions about this opportunity to

2018 NASA STEM Enhancement in Earth and Space Science Internship
Audience: Current High School Sophomores and Juniors
Application Deadline: March 1, 2018

NASA, the Texas Space Grant Consortium, and The University of Texas at Austin Center for Space Research have joined forces to encourage high school students’ interest in STEM careers. The SEES project allows students to work remotely prior to their onsite internship in Austin, Texas, July 14-28, 2018. Participants will learn how to interpret NASA satellite data while working with scientists and engineers in their chosen area of work. Housing, transportation and meals will be provided.

For more information, visit

Please direct questions about this opportunity to Margaret Baguio at

Celebrate Solar Week — Spring 2018
Audience: Educators and Students in Grades 5-9, Informal Educators
Event Dates: March 19-23, 2018

Solar Week provides a series of web-based educational activities focusing on the sun-Earth connection. Students ages 10-14 can learn about solar careers, sunspots, solar energy and solar storms through games and lessons.

This spring’s Solar Week activities will highlight the ionosphere. In constant motion, this mysterious region of Earth’s upper atmosphere is our interface to space. In 2018, the ionosphere’s secrets will be probed by two NASA satellite missions, GOLD and ICON.

For more information, visit

Please direct questions about this opportunity to

Help NASA Search the Realm Beyond Neptune at Backyard Worlds: Planet 9
Audience: All Educators and Students
Project Timeframe: Ongoing

Is a large planet at the fringes of our solar system awaiting discovery, a world astronomers call Planet Nine? Using data from NASA’s Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer mission, NASA scientists are looking for this planet and for new brown dwarfs in the backyard of the solar system. But they need your help! Finding these dim objects requires the human eye to comb through the images to distinguish moving celestial bodies from ghosts and other artifacts. Participants in this citizen science project will share the credit for their discoveries in any scientific publications that result from the project.

For more information and to learn how to participate, visit the “Backyard Worlds: Planet 9” website at

To learn more about NASA’s Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer and its mission to image the entire sky in the infrared, visit

Please direct questions about this opportunity to Marc Kuchner at


Science Opportunities for Educators of Grades K-12

**NEW** Sally Ride EarthKAM Mission Starts February 20
Audience: All Educators
Mission Dates: Feb. 20-26, 2018

#TeacherOnBoard Joe Acaba is calling all educators! Would you like your students to see Earth from the perspective of the International Space Station? It’s possible. It’s free. And it’s time to sign up!

During an EarthKAM mission, a camera is placed in the window of the space station, and students are invited to request images of specific targets on Earth. EarthKAM is great for traditional classrooms, after-school programs, community youth organizations, home-school groups and more. To sign up, visit

Find more ways to bring NASA into your classroom during NASA’s A Year of Education on Station, a celebration of an almost 12-month presence of a teacher on board the International Space Station.

Free Education Webinars From NASA Educator Professional Development
Audience: In-service, Pre-service, Home School and Informal Educators

The NASA STEM Educator Professional Development Collaborative at Texas State University is presenting a series of free webinars open to all educators. Join NASA education specialists to learn about activities, lesson plans, educator guides and resources that bring NASA into your classroom. Registration is required to participate. To register, simply click on the link provided beneath the webinar description.

**NEW** ISS YES: Water Is Necessary for Life
4-12, Informal and Pre-service Educators
Event Date: Feb. 21, 2018, at 5 p.m. EST
Learn how to design and build a water filtration device using commonly available materials and following the design process used by the engineers who developed the space station’s water recovery system. Students build, test and measure the performance of their filtration device; analyze the data; and then work toward an improved design. Register online to participate.

**NEW** ISS YES: Teaching on the ISS
K-12, Informal and Pre-service Educators
Event Date: Feb. 22, 2018, at 6 p.m. EST
The Year of Education on Station coordinates educational outreach activities and resources that feature U.S. crew members aboard the space station, including two educators-turned-astronauts. YES takes advantage of the unique capability of the space station to stimulate the interest of students from kindergarteners to post-graduates. Register online to participate.

For a full schedule of upcoming NASA Educator Professional Development webinars, visit

Questions about this series of webinars should be directed to Steve Culivan at


Opportunities for Higher Education and Informal Institutions

2018 Planetary Geology and Geophysics Undergraduate Research Program
Audience: Undergraduate Students Majoring in Geology or a Related Science
Application Deadline: Feb. 21, 2018

The Planetary Geology and Geophysics Undergraduate Research Program pairs qualified undergraduate students with NASA-funded investigators at research locations across the U.S. for eight weeks during the summer. Students spend the summer at the NASA scientists’ home institutions. Selected students receive a cost-of-living stipend and compensation for housing and travel.

Undergraduate students majoring in geology or related sciences are eligible to apply. Students graduating in 2018 who have not started graduate school yet are also eligible. Preference is given to U.S. citizens and permanent residents.

Applications are due Feb. 21, 2018.

For more information, visit

If you have questions about this opportunity, please email Robyn Wagner, PGGURP administrator, at

NASA Marshall Faculty Fellowship Program
Audience: Higher Education Researchers Who Are U.S. Citizens
Application Deadline: Feb. 22, 2018
Fellowship Dates: June 4 – Aug. 10, 2018

The NASA Marshall Faculty Fellowship Program provides opportunities for STEM faculty to do research for 10 weeks during the summer at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama. Applicants must be U.S. citizens working full time at an accredited university or college in the U.S. The program provides stipends and covers limited travel expenses. Qualified male and female faculty from majority- and minority-serving universities and colleges, including underserved groups and persons with disabilities, are encouraged to apply.

Applications are due Feb. 22, 2018. For information, visit

Please direct questions about this opportunity to

Call for Abstracts: 69th International Astronautical Congress
Audience: Full-time U.S. Graduate Students Attending U.S. Universities
Submission Deadline: Feb. 27, 2018

NASA is seeking abstracts from full-time graduate students interested in presenting at the 69th International Astronautical Congress taking place Oct. 1-5, 2018, in Bremen, Germany. Abstracts must be original, unpublished papers that have not been submitted in any other forum. Abstracts must be 400 words or less, written in English and related to NASA’s ongoing vision for space exploration.

Abstracts are due Feb. 27, 2018. For more information, visit

Please direct questions about this opportunity to

Now Accepting Applications for NASA Summer Internships
Audience: High School, Undergraduate and Graduate Students
Application Deadline: March 1, 2018

Now is your chance to apply for exciting hands-on internship opportunities available this summer at all NASA centers. High school, undergraduate and graduate students are needed to help NASA scientists and engineers with ongoing scientific and engineering research, technology development and spaceflight operations activities. Internships also exist in nontechnical areas such as communications, budget, procurement, education and human resources. NASA internships are stipend-paid and offer students mentor-directed, degree-related, NASA-relevant tasks.

If you think you have what it takes to be a NASA intern, please visit today to apply or to learn more about the numerous opportunities available.

The deadline for summer applications is March 1, 2018!

Please submit inquiries about NASA Internships and Fellowships via

Check out the ‘Explore NASA Science’ website!
Science starts with questions, leading to discoveries. Explore the redesigned NASA Science site and send us feedback. Visit To view the site in Spanish, visit

Don’t miss out on upcoming NASA education opportunities
For a full list of events, opportunities and more, visit the Educators and Students Current Opportunity pages on NASA’s website:
— Educators
— Students

Are you looking for NASA educational materials to support your STEM curriculum?
Search hundreds of resources by subject, grade level, type and keyword at

Find NASA science resources for your classroom.
NASA Wavelength is a digital collection of Earth and space science resources for educators of all levels — from elementary to college, to out-of-school programs.

Take Part in a Year of Education on Station
September 2017 – September 2018: Although on different crews, astronauts Joe Acaba and Ricky Arnold — both former teachers — will work aboard the International Space Station. Visit NASA’s A Year of Education on Station website for out-of-this-world resources and opportunities for K-16 students and educators.

Visit NASA Education on the web:
NASA Office of Education:
For Educators:
For Students:
NASA Kids’ Club:

Did you miss last week’s NASA Science WOW! newsletter?
Visit the Science WOW! blog for an archive of previous messages.