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NASA Seeks Undergraduates To Fly Research In Microgravity

HOUSTON -- NASA is offering undergraduate students the opportunity to test an experiment in microgravity as part of the agency's Reduced Gravity Education Flight Program. The program is accepting proposals for two different flight experiences in 2012.

Teams interested in conducting student-driven research should submit a letter of intent by Sept. 14. This step is optional, but serves as an introductory notice that a team plans to submit a proposal for the competition. Proposals for student-driven experiments are due Oct. 26, and selected teams will be announced Dec. 7. The actual flight experience will take place in June 2012.

The initiative, managed by the Education Office at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston, provides future scientists and engineers an opportunity to design, build and fly an experiment aboard a microgravity aircraft. The aircraft is a modified jet that flies approximately 30 roller-coaster-like climbs and dips to simulate micro- and hyper-gravity. The overall experience includes scientific research, hands-on experimental design, test operations and public outreach activities.

"This program leverages NASA's unique resources and allows students to determine what it takes to be a real world scientist or engineer," said Reduced Gravity Education Flight Program Manager Doug Goforth.

NASA personnel also have indentified student opportunities related to ongoing systems engineering projects that are pertinent to future agency research and missions. Students interested in working on these projects are encouraged to apply for the Systems Engineering Educational Discovery (SEED) flight week opportunity. Proposals are due by Oct. 26, and selected teams will be announced Nov. 30. The SEED flight week will take place in April 2012.

All applicants for these programs must be U.S. citizens. Full-time students must be at least 18 years old. Selected teams may invite an accredited journalist to fly with them to document the experience.

For more information about the Reduced Gravity Education Flight Program, or the application process, or to submit a proposal, contact jsc-reducedgravity@nasa.gov or visit:



http://microgravityuniversity.jsc.nasa.gov


To view SEED flight week opportunities, visit:




http://microgravityuniversity.jsc.nasa.gov/se/


For information about NASA's education programs, visit:




http://www.nasa.gov/education
 

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