Celebrate World Space Week 2014

Written by Nathan Smith on . Posted in STEM and STEAM

Imagine an entire week of space-themed activities to enhance learning. Join educators and space enthusiasts around the world to celebrate World Space Week, Oct. 4-10, 2014.

World Space Week is the largest public space event in the world, with over 1,400 events in more than 80 countries held during the week of Oct. 4-10.

In 2014, World Space Week encourages the use global navigation satellite systems space-themed activities.

To learn more about World Space Week, find educational materials, and register your event, visit http://www.worldspaceweek.org.

Send Your Name to the Asteroid Bennu!

Written by Nathan Smith on . Posted in STEM and STEAM

NASA is inviting people around the world to submit their names to be etched on a microchip aboard a spacecraft headed to the asteroid Bennu in 2016.

The “Messages to Bennu!” microchip will travel to the asteroid aboard the Origins Spectral Interpretation Resource Identification Security Regolith Explorer, or OSIRIS-REx, spacecraft. The robotic mission will spend more than two years at the asteroid, which has a width of approximately 1,760 feet (500 meters). The spacecraft will collect a sample of Bennu’s surface and return it to Earth in a sample return capsule.

The deadline to submit names online is Sept. 30, 2014. Participants who submit their names to the “Messages to Bennu!” campaign will be able to print a certificate of appreciation to document their involvement.

For more information and to submit your name, visit http://planetary.org/bennu.

Participants who “follow” or “like” the mission on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/OSIRISREx) will receive updates on the location of their names in space from launch time until the asteroid samples return to Earth in 2023. Facebook fans also will receive mission progress and late-breaking news through regular status updates.

For more information about the OSIRIS-REx mission, visit http://www.nasa.gov/osiris-rex and http://osiris-rex.lpl.arizona.edu.

Questions about this opportunity should be directed to tps@planetary.org.

MAVEN Workshop — Red Planet: Read, Write, Explore!

Written by Nathan Smith on . Posted in STEM and STEAM

The Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutioN, or MAVEN, mission is set to arrive at Mars on Sept. 21, 2014. Celebrate the arrival with the MAVEN education team at this one-day workshop about the mission and the accompanying elementary program, Red Planet: Read, Write, Explore! The program features six standards-based lessons that combine science, literacy and art to help students understand planetary habitability and the MAVEN mission.

The workshop will include dinner and lectures by MAVEN scientists. Following the workshop, participants will watch the NASA TV broadcast of the MAVEN spacecraft’s arrival at Mars.

The workshop will take place on Sept. 21, 2014, in Boulder, Colorado. Registration is $20 and includes coffee, snacks and dinner. Applications are due Sept. 15, 2014, but space is limited so interested educators are encouraged to apply early.

For more information about the workshop and to apply online, visit http://lasp.colorado.edu/home/maven/education-outreach/for-educators/red-planet/boulder-workshop/.

Please email any questions about this opportunity to epomail@lasp.colorado.edu.

2015 ICESat-2 Mission Hexacopter Engineering Challenge

Written by Nathan Smith on . Posted in STEM and STEAM

The Ice, Cloud and Land Elevation Satellite-2, or ICESat-2, mission will host the 2015 ICESat-2 Mission Hexacopter Engineering Challenge at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, on April 17, 2015. This challenge will task teams of students with measuring the height of Earth around us, from tree canopies to bodies of water. This challenge will be the first of its kind in a yearly series of ICESat-2 engineering challenge events.

Student teams will be selected to participate in this challenge through a proposal and selection process. Participating teams will design and build hexacopter multirotors that can create a digital elevation model of a specific area within a predetermined amount of time. Students will also submit technical and educational reports describing in detail their efforts throughout the competition process.

This challenge is open to undergraduate college students from accredited U.S. colleges and universities. Teams may consist of one to five students and a university mentor/instructor. Due to the nature of the challenge, multidisciplinary teams are encouraged.

Applications are due Sept. 12, 2014.

For more information about the 2015 ICESat-2 Mission Hexacopter Engineering Challenge, visit http://icesat.gsfc.nasa.gov/icesat2/epo_hex.php.

Questions about this challenge should be directed to hexacopter challenge coordinator Brian Campbell at Brian.A.Campbell@nasa.gov.

REGISTRATION OPEN: Zero Robotics High School Tournament 2014

Written by Nathan Smith on . Posted in STEM and STEAM

The Zero Robotics High School Tournament 2014 will take place this fall, offering U. S. high school students the opportunity to design experiments that will be tested in space.

Zero Robotics challenges high school student teams to write their own algorithms to fly the Synchronized Position Hold, Engage, Reorient, Experimental Satellites, or SPHERES. The competition starts online where teams compete to solve an annual challenge guided by mentors. Students can create, edit, share, save, simulate and submit code from a Web browser. After several phases of virtual competition, finalists will be selected to compete in a live championship aboard the International Space Station.

Registration for the competition closes on Sept. 5, 2014. The competition begins with a live webcast kickoff event from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology on Sept. 6, 2014.

For more information about the tournament and to register your team to participate, visit http://www.zerorobotics.mit.edu.

Zero Robotics is organized by Massachusetts Institute of Technology Space Systems Laboratory, Aurora Flight Sciences Corporation and TopCoder, and is sponsored by The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, NASA and the Center for Advancement of Science in Space.

Please email any questions about this opportunity to zerorobotics@mit.edu.