Tuesday, July 23, 2013

ISAS 2013 Academy 2: Day 3

The ISAS students got out of bed very early this morning to catch an 8 am flight to San Jose, California. From there they traveled to the location of the NASA Ames Research Center. This is where the students will be able to tour many of the testing facilities and scientific labs that have played a large role in bringing us the technology and scientific exploration known to us today. This is also one of the best opportunity in the academy to gain information in regards to their mission planning with many chances to speak with NASA professionals.

NASA Ames Research Center

Students were able to tour the 20g centrifuge with Daniel Morgan. This facility provides research on the affects of increased gravity forces on humans and their ability to function under those conditions.

Students received the chance to sit in the centrifuge. 

The Vertical Motion Simulator has the benefit of testing many different flight scenarios, such as Space Shuttles, Fighter Jets, Moon Landers and 747s. Guided by Lisa Grant the students learned that this particular simulator not only gave pilots and astronauts all of the buttons and view screens of the actual vehicle, but it also simulated vehicle movement and depth perception. This simulator is the only one in the world of its kind.

Students view and step inside a Vertical Motion Simulator.

Students heard from Dr. Lynn Rothschild who provided a great presentation on life living in extreme conditions. They learned that different factors affect the chances of life flourishing such as temperature, pH levels, salinity, radiation and more.

Dr. Rothschild speaks with the students. 

NASA Ames Research Center is home to the 80 by 120 wind tunnel, the largest wind tunnel in the world. Bill Warmbrodt presented the students with a very fascinating presentation on this scientific apparatus. Students appreciated his approach of engaging them with questions and amusing stories. This wind tunnel uses the amount of electricity that it would take to power two cities of 225,000 people and can produce wind at 115 miles per hour. It uses hydro-electricity that comes from dams in Big Creek of Nevada and the Snake River of Idaho.

Students visit the largest wind tunnel in the world. 

The final event of the day was a great time for the teams to take advantage of the fact they were on the site of a NASA center walking among elite scientists, engineers and other professionals. A panel of experts including Pascal Lee, Brian Day, Nathalie Cabrol and Jake Forsberg brought a seventy minute question and answer session to the students. Questions were asked such as, "What are the best ways to protect against radiation?" And, "What is an effective way to dispose of trash during a stay on Mars?" To find out about the answers to these questions and to find out what decisions the teams made on the specific details of their missions, be sure to join us for the banquet on Saturday where the teams will present their final reports.

Brian Day talks with a student.
Not only are these students bright they are pretty enthusiastic. When the final call came for questions six or seven hands popped up and their questions were exceptionally strong and in depth. Well done students!

Please take some time to visit the ISAS Facebook and Twitter page for more pictures and updates. #ISAS


No comments:

Post a Comment