Exploration Idea Profiles

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Exploration Idea Profiles are short 2-page snapshots of a new or modified NASA-based idea. Each one briefly describes a main idea or innovation, how the idea connects to NASA content, required resources, a need that the idea addresses, and connections to science, technology, engineering, the arts and/or mathematics. Use these ideas to spark the development of new activities, projects or programs.

Clean Room

Category: Virtual Reality

A virtual recreation of the Clean Room at Goddard. This is a simulation of where the satellites and instruments are built. Users can interact with tools and spacecraft directly.

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Volumetric Visualization

Category: Virtual Reality

This project lets scientists and educators load in any form of 3D spatial data, to have it visualized in three dimensions. Once the data is loaded in, it can be seen, explored, and interacted with. Supports voxelized data, point cloud data, and time-varying data.

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Mixed Reality

Category: Virtual Reality

Mixed reality is a new compositing technique that makes use of chroma key to put a live actor into a virtual environment; allowing the audience to see a 3rd person view of the user and their interactions within that virtual environment.

Coming soon

Spacecraft 3D

Category: Virtual Reality

SpaceCraft 3D is a program developed by JPL to view different spacecraft models in augmented reality. The program allows the user to watch launches and animations of how different instruments work.

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Augmented Reality and Visualizing Solar Missions

Category: Virtual Reality

This project explores how to develop a virtual space for the orbits and information related to a particular solar mission.

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Mission Models

Category: Paper Cutting

There are many spacecraft exploring our Solar System. You can build paper versions of many of them right here on Earth and in collaboration with NASA’s STEM Laboratory at Goddard Space Flight Center.

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Wind Turbine

Category: Paper Cutting

Why not explore the gift that keeps on giving–clean energy? This project builds awareness of wind energy – the fastest growing source of power in the United States and also demonstrate the flexibility of using 2D paper cutting as a resource.

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Sensor Calibration

Category: Mobile Sensors

Sensor calibration – This project compares smartphone sensor apps (accelerometers, temperature, sound, light, magnetism, etc) against professional-grade sensors to establish calibration and optimal protocols for making high-precision measurements.

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Geomagnetic Storm Detection with Smartphone Technology

Category: Mobile Sensors

Geomagnetic Storm Detection – We have recently tested and calibrated two smartphones (iPhone 6s and Samsung Note 5) to identify whether they can detect geomagnetic storms. If this can be done reliably, the Aurorasaurus citizen science program may be able to add these measurements to its observing protocol.

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Freshwater Mapping in Native American Communities

Category: Mobile Sensors

Freshwater mapping in Native American Communities – Native American students in several schools in Phoenix Arizona will find, photograph, and geo-tag locations where fresh water can be found on their reservations.

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Crowdsourcing Earth’s Rotation

Category: Mobile Sensors

Crowdsourcing Earth's Rotation - This project allows citizen explorers around the world to make careful local measurements of the force of gravity that can be combined to detect the latitude-dependent change in acceleration caused by Earth's rotation (centrifugal force).

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Common Robotic Telescope User Interface

Category: Digital Learning

Access to observational tools is an important element of astronomy education. Why not enhance that experience by designing a common robotic telescope user interface (CRTUI) that would work universally with all/many existing robotic telescopes and robotic telescope networks?

Coming soon

Infiniscope

Category: Digital Learning

Created by ASU’s School of Earth and Space Exploration and NASA’s Science Mission Directorate, Infiniscope provides a virtual space to connect users with cutting edge space exploration experiences that inspire curiosity, excitement, engagement, and confidence. In the STEAM Innovation Lab users can explore this virtual space and provide user input to an existing program.

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Eclipse Soundscapes Project

Category: Digital Learning

The Eclipse Soundscapes mobile application is a free, educational application focused on accessibility via a multisensory experience that includes audio descriptions of an eclipse in both real time and post eclipse for educational purposes, and an interactive “rumble map” that utilizes haptic technology in a unique way to allow users to understand the eclipse through touch and sound.

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WhyVille Aeronautics and Space Administration (WASA)

Category: Digital Learning

Whyville is a virtual world where children ages 8 to 15 play, explore, create and learn together. From solving math puzzles to protecting coral reefs, from programming robots to running virtual businesses, Whyville's citizens, known as Whyvillians, collaborate, compete and share while engaging in 100+ games and activities.

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Helioviewer: From Screen to 3D

Category: Digital Learning

The Helioviewer tool is a powerful software data program for visualizing the Sun in different wavelengths using spacecraft observations. By adding a “Print-to-3D” feature that would send the images to be printed on a 3D Printer, Helioviewer could be made more accessible to the blind and visually impaired, and allow an additional way to study the Sun’s features.

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Coding for WiFi Enabled Lighting

Category: Coding

For the Great American Eclipse of 2017 our team searched for new and inventive ways to view the eclipse. We developed 3D printed, state and nation shaped, Coding for WiFi Enabled Lighting so people could personalize their experience while safely viewing the eclipse.

Small-Scale Robotic Sensors

Category: Coding

This project explores how the LEGO and VEX robots can mimic robotics at NASA. We will study the integration of affordable sensors to explore temperature and navigation/position of certain small areas and objects, similar to the thermocouples, resistance temperature detectors (RTD) and global positioning system (GPS) used in NASA missions, such as the MMS spacecraft.

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Collapsable 1m^3 kilopixel Volumetric Data Display

Category: Coding

We currently have an 8x8x8 volumetric display, but what if you could create a 1x1x1 meter collapsible display. The goal is to use found objects like led lights and ping pong balls to create an extra large, portable display.

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Pinhole Projectors

Category: 3D Printing

For the Great American Eclipse of 2017 our team searched for new and inventive ways to view the eclipse. We developed 3D printed, state and nation shaped, pinhole projectors so people could personalize their experience while safely viewing the eclipse.

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Sounding Rockets (3D)

Category: 3D Printing

Sounding rockets are 30 minute tests in which NASA collects data and conducts engineering tests on a multitude of instruments. We created a model that seperates to show the different components of a sounding rocket and can then be fastened back together.

Coming soon

Cube Sat

Category: 3D Printing

Modeling parts can be expensive so for the CubeSat project we wanted to make a 3D printable file that is accessible to anyone. With this printed file you can then test how well instruments fit within the CubeSat.

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Tactile Sun Project

Category: 3D Printing

The Tactile Sun Project will convert high resolution solar images into 3D print files with the push of a button. This innovation would allow anyone to create three dimensional solar features of their choosing and print them at home, at their school, local library, or makers space.

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