Current projects funded under a variety of NASA grants (SBIR, NIAC, SSERVI, ESO, CIF), contracts with private companies, and student competitions.

Planetary soil characterization

* Geotechnical Properties of Lunar, Asteroidal, and Martian Simulants
* Drilling Techniques on Icy Lunar and Martian Soils

lunar soil excavation

* Evaluation of Lunar Soil Excavation and Handling Concepts
* Development of Autonomous Planetary Excavators
* Scraper Protoype for Lunar Regolith Excavation

Resource Extraction

* Concentration and Separation of Lunar Volatiles for ISRU
* Development of optical mIning methods for asteroids

* Membranes for Hydrogen Separation and Purification
* Integrated Microchannel Reformer/H2 Purifier for Fuel Cells

Sensors for PlanetAry Exploration

* LIBS and Raman Integrated Instrument
* Biogenic Trace Gas Detector
* Multi-Spectral Imaging Spectrometer
* Automated Rock Thin Section Device for Rock Analysis

advanced materials & manufacturing

* High-Temperature Synthesis for Spacecraft/Habitat Parts
* Structural Materials from Lunar Materials by Sintering & SHS
* Additive Manufacturing with Lunar Simulants

granular material handling and transport

* Simulation of Lunar Dust Processing by Fluidization
* Simulation and Testing of Dust Transport on Extraction Plant
* Microgravity Testing of Granular Material

Spacecraft and Aircraft Fire Suppression

* Water-Mist Fire Suppression for Spacecraft and Habitats
* Development of Portable Extinguisher for Spacecraft

Economic analyses of ISRU-based space missions

* Space Transportation Architecture Models
* Economic Analyses of Space Resources & Solar Power
* Studies of Potential Business Opportunities in Space

student competitions

* NASA Robotic Mining Competition
* NASA RASC-AL Mars Ice Challenge
* High-Altitude Balloon DemoSat (Space Grant)




21st Trends in Space-Based Solar Power Generation and Storage

NASA Emerging Space Office (ESO)