NASA's engineering research centers and interdisciplinary educationA new program of interactive education between NASA and the academic community aims to improve research and education, provide long-term, stable funding, and support cross-disciplinary and multi-disciplinary research. The mission of NASA's Office of Aeronautics, Exploration and Technology (OAET) is discussed and it is pointed out that the OAET conducts about 10 percent of its total R&D program at U.S. universities. Other NASA university-based programs are listed including the Office of Commercial Programs Centers for the Commercial Development of Space (CCDS) and the National Space Grant program. The importance of university space engineering centers and the selection of the nine current centers are discussed. A detailed composite description is provided of the University Space Engineering Research Centers. Other specialized centers are described such as the Center for Space Construction, the Mars Mission Research Center, and the Center for Intelligent Robotic Systems for Space Exploration. Approaches to educational outreach are discussed.
Johnston, Gordon I. (NASA Office of Aeronautics, Exploration and Technology, Washington DC, United States)