Keith Cowing: February 2012 Archives

Scientists See Red on NASA Cuts of Mars Missions, AP

"To scientists, the message from the White House seems simple: Bye-bye, Mars. On Monday, upset Mars researchers are meeting with NASA officials to figure out how to reboot the program beyond the 2013 mission. If Obama's budget sails through as outlined, "in essence, it is the end of the Mars program," said Phil Christensen, a Mars researcher at Arizona State University. It's like "we've just flown Apollo 10 and now we're going to cancel the Apollo program when we're one step from landing," he said."

- Second International MEPAG (Mars Exploration Program Analysis Group) Meeting (with WEBEX instructions)

- Live tweeting from this morning's session at @NASAWatch hashtag #MEPAG

Keith's MEPAG Observation: despite the fact that the Mars community is facing budget cuts all they can think about is more expensive missions to Mars. No interest in alternate approaches to sample return i.e. in situ characterization. FAIL.

NASA Official Announces Chair of New Mars Program Planning Group

"NASA's associate administrator for the Science Mission Directorate, John Grunsfeld, has named former veteran NASA program manager Orlando Figueroa to lead a newly established Mars Program Planning Group (MPPG) tasked to reformulate the agency's Mars Exploration Program. Figueroa's first assignment is to develop a draft framework for review by March 15."

Scientists see red on NASA cuts of Mars missions, AP

"NASA said it does not quite know what a reconfigured 2018 mission would look like, but it would be cost-capped at $700 million and it will not be landing. If it is lucky, it may orbit Mars. After Curiosity lands in August, the next NASA Mars surface mission probably is close to a decade away, Grunsfeld said. To scientists, the message from the White House seems simple: Bye-bye, Mars."

Keith's 25 Jan note: No mention of these tech transfer opportunities at NASA OCT. No mention at LaRC Technology Gateway (but they mention LENR/cold fusion), No mention at NASA TechBriefs. Unless one reads the Federal Register, all of these nifty NASA spinoffs and discoveries just go unnoticed.

- NASA Technology Transfer Opportunity: Quick Change Ceramic Flame Holder For High-Output Torches
- Technology Transfer Opportunity: Real-Time Interferometric Fiber Optic Bragg Grating Sensors
- NASA Technology Transfer Opportunity: Self-Scrubbing Technology for Reconfigurable Rad-hard Memory Arrays

Keith's 31 Jan update: Hey, there's more spinoff goodness coming out of LaRC - but NASA still doesn't seem to want to promote it - other than burying it in the Federal Register. Go figure.

- NASA Technology Transfer Opportunity: High Performance High Temperature Resins for Dielectric Films, Coatings, Composites, Adhesives and Solid Parts
- NASA Technology Transfer Opportunity: Zone Zeroing Out Negative Effects - Biofeedback training for Optimal Athletic Performance
- NASA Technology Transfer Opportunity: A Byzantine Fault Tolerant

Keith's 21 Feb update: LaRC keeps spinning these things out and yet their website, OCT, and NASA Tech Briefs still continue to ignore them.

- NASA Technology Transfer Opportunity: Low Frequency Portable Accoustic Measurement System to Detect & Locate Turbulence and Severe Weather
- NASA Technology Transfer Opportunity: Wireless Inductance Capacitance Sensor Suitable for Small Packaging
- NASA Technology Transfer Opportunity: Powerless Passive Inductor Capacitor Sensor for Measuring Fluid Level Pitch & Roll Angles & Volume
- NASA Technology Transfer Opportuniy Flexible Hightemp Thermocouple Silver Electroplated Film
- NASA Technology Transfer Opportunity: Fail Safe High Temperature Composite Structure
- NASA Notice of Intent To Grant Partially Exclusive License: Photogrammetry System and Method for Determining Relative Motion Between Two Bodies

ISS: Users Wanted

Keith's note: Interesting commentary by HEOMD AA Bill Gerstenmaier at the FAA Space Transportation Conference this morning. Refreshingly, he openly admitted that NASA built the ISS - at great cost - but did not put much real thought into how to use it. Now, there is a 900,000 pound research facility in orbit and it is the size of a 5 bedroom house. Yet according to Gerstenmaier, NASA cannot use all of this capability and the agency is looking for new ways to use it. Ideas are welcome. NASA is offering free rides up, free downlinks, and other services to potential users. Gerstenmaier challenged the attendees to think about new ways to use the ISS.

Study challenges existence of arsenic-based life, Nature

"A group of scientists, led by microbiologist Rosie Redfield at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada, have posted data on Redfield's blog that, she says, present a "clear refutation" of key findings from the paper. Redfield and her collaborators hope to submit their work to Science by the end of the month. She says that if Science refuses to publish the work because it has been discussed on blogs, it will become an important test case for open science."

- The Arsenic-Based-Life Aftermath, C&EN
- Is This New Study the Nail in the Coffin of "Arsenic Life"?, Popular Science
- - Closely Watched Study Fails to Find Arsenic in Microbial DNA, Science
Arsenic-based life finding fails follow-up, ScienceNews



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