NASA Funds 17 Researchers for Early Studies Into Groundbreaking Space Technologies
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration announced that it has issued a new round of awards to fund early-stage studies into technologies that could support future aeronautics and space missions. Through the NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts program, a total of $5.1 million was awarded to 17 researchers conducting studies into technologies that could revolutionize space exploration, NASA said Friday.
The selected concepts include 12 new projects for Phase I study, as well as five Phase II awards that will allow researchers to continue their prior work on innovative concepts. Phase I fellows will each receive $175,000 for a nine-month study and Phase II fellows will receive $600,000 each for study over a two-year period.
The projects are still in the early stages of development and are not considered official NASA missions.
In a statement, NASA Deputy Administrator Pam Melroy said concepts like those being explored through NIAC will help the agency expand the scope of what is technologically achievable. She explained that as NASA sets its sights on exploring further destinations using humans and robots, innovative ideas and future thinking will increasingly be critical.
For his part, Jim Reuter, associate administrator for NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate, said studying creative ideas is the first step to turning science fiction into reality. He stressed that the space agency’s mission to explore the universe requires new technologies and new ways of doing things.
Tags: funding Jim Reuter NASA NIAC Pam Melroy space