The goal of the Space Studies Colloquium Series is to bring guest researchers from the astronautical and space science communities, in both industry and academia, to support space-related scholarships in the Department of Space Studies at UND and other North Dakota institutions of higher education. Guest researchers will be invited by the Department of Space Studies to give a seminar in their area of professional expertise, guest lecture in existing courses offered through the department, and consult on space-related research with faculty and students. Guest researchers will be invited from a variety of backgrounds and research areas, such as space engineering, space life sciences, planetary sciences, astrobiology, earth system sciences, and space policy. In addition to the Department of Space Studies, guest speakers will interact with faculty, researchers, and students in a number of programs at UND including the School of Aerospace Sciences, College of Business, and the Departments of Mechanical and Electrical Engineering, Geography, Geology, Physics, and Political Science.
Reaching for the Stars IS an Option: A Conversation
April 8, 2019(watch)
Associate Professor of Geology, College of Charleston, and Director, South Carolina NASA Space Grant Consortium
Dr. Cassandra Runyon graduated from the University of Hawaii in 1988 with her Ph.D. in Geology and Geophysics. Following graduation, she was a National Research Council Postdoctoral Fellow at NASA Johnson Space Center. Her research focused on understanding the nature and origin of volcanic features on the terrestrial planets. Later, as an employee of POD Associates, she used laboratory and remote sensing data to interpret and model near-Earth space debris for the National Space Council and the Department of Defense. This research helped to better understand the effects of space debris on various spacecraft materials. As a Faculty Fellow working with her colleagues at NASA Johnson Space Center, Cass helped to explore and define the initial field requirements for future human-robotic missions to the Moon and Mars. Later, after joining the College of Charleston faculty, her research used hyperspectral and multispectral data and imagery to model stressed terrestrial environments including coastal wetlands, precision farming and disturbed ground to assess urban/suburban change to South Carolina’s coastal wetlands through field reconnaissance, remote sensing, and GIS. She continues to work with NASA as a science team member and education and public engagement (E/PE) lead for the Moon Mineralogy Mapper (M3) spectrometer onboard Chandrayaan-1, which discovered water on the Moon!
She is currently an Associate Professor of Geology at the College of Charleston, Director of the NASA SC Space Grant Consortium and SC NASA EPSCoR program and the education/public engagement lead for two NASA Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI) teams. Her passion is helping to provide access to STEM for all audiences, including those with visible and invisible disabilities.
Have you or someone you know ever dreamed of doing something big - perhaps starting a business or working for the aerospace industry and/or NASA? You (they) can. Have you or someone you know been challenged by a visible or invisible disability thinking it may be a career-breaking barrier that may not be overcome? You (they) can! The old adage, "where there is a will, there is a way" is true! Recognizing, understanding, and being willing to work through - and with - life’s challenges along the way is paramount. As an educator, employer, or friend, we can help to facilitate and include those with exceptional needs so that reaching for their star career choice is an option.
NASA Human Research Program: Human Health and Performance for Space Exploration
April 1, 2019(watch)
Chief Scientist, NASA Human Research Program, Johnson Space Center
Dr. Fogarty is the NASA Human Research Program (HRP) Chief Scientist. As HRP Chief Scientist, Jennifer works with the HRP elements on the development and oversight of the HRP research portfolio addressing the diverse human system risks that need to be characterized and mitigated to enable human exploration of space. This role requires communication and collaboration with current flight programs, international partners, as well as developmental spaceflight programs that will be implementing risk reduction strategies based on the standards and requirements developed and informed by HRP research and risk mitigation strategies. In addition, Jennifer establishes and maintains relationships and collaborations with external institutions and other government agencies to assess fundamental mechanistic discoveries as well as cutting edge prevention and treatment strategies. Before taking on this leadership role in the HRP, Jennifer was the Translational Scientist for NASA Space and Clinical Operations Division in the Human Health and Performance Directorate. Jennifer facilitated communication, project development, and program interactions between the operations and research communities. She identified candidates for the transition to operations process that will reduce risk and resource utilization with overall goal of preserving astronaut health during and after missions. Previously, Jennifer was the Open Collaboration and Innovation Manager responsible for developing and maturing collaborations and applying tools such as technical gap analysis and open innovation to further research, enhance clinical resources, and facilitate technology development.
Dr. Fogarty received a Ph.D. from Texas A&M University System Health Science Center. She is currently on the editorial team for the Fundamentals of Aerospace Medicine, 5th edition, regularly lectures on space physiology and human system risk management, and has continued interacting with the research and technology development community through NASA’s Human Health and Performance Center and the Human Research Program.
The humans that will explore the far reaches of space will experience unprecedented biological, physiological, and psychological challenges brought on by extreme environmental exposures. The NASA Human Research Program pursues research that characterizes the effects of these hazardous exposures and is responsible for developing and validating mitigation strategies that reduce the risk to the humans and the mission. In my presentation I will describe the hazards of spaceflight, including the exposure to altered gravity fields, a closed environment, isolation and confinement, and galactic cosmic radiation. I will also discuss that while humans are extremely adaptable, these exposures could lead to significant health and performance decrements during the mission and later in life long after the mission is complete. The NASA Human Research Program refers to these decrements as human system risks and uses this construct to describe our portfolio of work. I will also describe how we continue to do surveillance of the experience during human spaceflight to enable the identification of new and emerging risks. The final piece of the presentation will provide an overview of how the NASA Human Research Program interacts with researchers from academia and industry.
Technologies for Preventing Dust Contamination for Lunar Exploration Missions
March 25, 2019(watch)
Flight Crew Operations and Test Engineer, CST-100 Starliner Commercial Crew Program, Boeing Company
Dr. Kavya Manyapu currently works at the Boeing Company as a Flight Crew Operations and Test Engineer for the CST-100 Starliner Commercial Crew Program. She is the Spacesuit integration lead for the Starliner program. She holds a B.S. in Aerospace Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology, a Masters from MIT in Aeronautics and Astronautics, and a Ph.D. in Aerospace Sciences from the University of North Dakota where she has worked on patent-pending spacesuit technologies. Her research is focused on spacesuit and space habitat technologies for planetary exploration. She was the first Ph.D. student of the Space Studies Department and has been recently appointed to the Adjunct Faculty staff for the department.
Lunar dust proved to be troublesome during the Apollo missions. The powdery dust got into everything, abrading spacesuit fabric, clogging seals and other critical equipment. Even inside the lunar module, Apollo astronauts were exposed to this dust after they removed their dust-coated spacesuits. While efforts are underway to figure out how to return astronauts to the Moon and set up habitats for long-duration missions, the issue of lunar dust remains relevant. Consequently, NASA has identified dust as a critical environmental challenge to overcome for future planetary surface missions characterized by dusty environments.
The lecture provides an overview of the various types of spacesuits required for space travel. Several concepts that were successfully investigated by the international research community for preventing deposition of lunar dust on space hardware will be reviewed and novel technologies for preventing spacesuit/space habitat dust contamination for future Lunar and Martian missions will be discussed.
Closed for Operations: Non-Interference Zones and the Cadence of the New Space Race
February 11, 2019(watch)
Founder and CEO, OSA Consulting, Inc.
Christopher Hearsey is an aerospace executive, research scientist, and space law and policy scholar who has worked in the aerospace and nonprofit industries for over ten years. Chris formerly served as the Director of DC Operations and Corporate Counsel for Bigelow Aerospace. Following a run for Congress in 2018, Chris founded OSA Consulting, LLC and the educational nonprofit The Space Court Foundation Inc., which is currently supporting the development of a YouTube show about space law titled Stellar Decisis that will launch in summer 2019.
Chris holds a B.A. in Mathematical Economics and Political Science from Temple University, an M.S. in Legal Theory from The American University, an M.S. in Space Studies from the University of North Dakota, and a J.D. from the University of Mississippi with a Concentration in Air and Space Law (honors). Chris earned a fellowship at the National Air and Space Museum studying space history and served as a special assistant in the Office of Space and Advanced Technology at the US Department of State where he worked on President Obama’s National Space Policy and served on the US delegation to the UN Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space.
This presentation will explore the concept of non-interference zones for space activities and how this concept produces an inevitable constraint on policy- and decision-makers planning future space activities. Generally, non-interference zones are volumes of space around spacecraft and/or space activities determined by a set of criteria that creates a location or relative position of exclusivity for the operator. The murky question of whether this idea is in accordance with the outer space treaty system and/or US law and policy is gaining some clarity. And while the legal considerations are important, the realities of physics and mathematics place a limitation on the flexibility of the criteria for non-interference zones to handle the proliferation of new operators and activities, and this raises the important question about the degree of exclusivity that is permissible and expected. This issue will have major implications for future mission and architectural designs and set the development cadence of space settlement on a celestial body. Adjusting to the space environment will be key to ensure successful operations on the Moon or other celestial bodies, but the physical limitations of the space environment highlight the need to keep discussions surrounding the cadence of this new space race ongoing because, eventually, we will run out of space.
Tasks and Abilities for the Human Exploration of Mars
January 14, 2019(watch)
President and Principal Scientist, Anacapa Sciences, Inc.
Dr. Stuster is a cultural anthropologist and Certified Professional Ergonomist specializing in the measurement and enhancement of human performance in extreme environments. He has analyzed the work performed by telecommunications technicians, military specialists, and astronauts. His research for NASA began in 1982 with a systems analysis of space shuttle refurbishing procedures and has been followed by studies of conditions that are analogous to space missions, which led to recommendations to facilitate human performance on the International Space Station, space craft, and at planetary facilities.
A scientific approach to the human exploration of Mars began in 1952 with the publication of Wernher von Braun’s Das Marsprojekt, which described the mathematics necessary to enable interplanetary travel. The English-language version (The Mars Project) led to a series of articles in Collier’s, a weekly magazine with a tradition of influencing public opinion and government policy. The series, titled Man Will Conquer Space Soon! was published in eight, beautifully-illustrated installments between 1952 and 1954. Those articles inspired Walt Disney to recruit von Braun and other experts for three episodes of the wildly-popular Disneyland television program; the third episode, Mars and Beyond, was broadcast in December 1957, two months after the Soviet Union shocked the world with the launch of Sputnik, the first artificial satellite, which led directly to the creation of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. NASA has been designing equipment, space suits, and space habitats, and preparing plans for the human exploration of Mars since the agency was formed in 1958. Thousands of scientists and engineers at NASA, universities, and aerospace contractors have worked on dozens of plans for a human expedition to Mars since then. However, no one actually identified the tasks that would likely be performed by the explorers, until now.
Dr. Jack Stuster will present the results of a three-year study that addresses several NASA risks by identifying the work that will be performed during an expedition to Mars and the abilities, skills, and knowledge that will be required of crew members. The study began by developing a comprehensive inventory of 1,125 tasks that are likely to be performed during the 12 phases of the first human expeditions to Mars, from launch to landing more than 30 months later. Sixty subject matter experts (including UND faculty and graduate students) rated expedition tasks in terms of frequency, difficulty to learn, and importance to mission success. Seventy-two SMEs placed the physical, cognitive, and social abilities necessary to perform the tasks in order of importance for eight specialist domains identified by the task analysis. The research team then identified, 1) Abilities, skills, and knowledge that can be generalized across tasks, 2) Cross-training strategies, and 3) Implications for crew size and composition, and for the design of equipment, suits, habitats, and procedures to support sustained human performance during exploration-class space missions. The days of describing an interplanetary mission plan with detailed mathematical calculations and a few sentences of speculation about the humans who would make the journey are gone.