UH System partners with NASA to help ‘advance human spaceflight’

ByShannon J. Cortes

Jun 13, 2022

UH System Chancellor Renu Khator and JSC Director Vanessa Wyche sign extension of long-standing partnership

NASA signature

The partnership will focus on research, development and technology transfer, training, education and awareness initiatives

NASA signature team photo

Chancellor Khator and Director Wyche with other NASA and UH system officials after signing the partnership

The University of Houston System and NASA’s Johnson Space Center (JSC) extend a longstanding partnership to work collaboratively on joint research, technology development, technology transfer, training and training initiatives. education and awareness.

As NASA strives to travel deeper into space, these efforts will be conducted through the undergraduate, graduate, and joint research programs of the four universities in the UH system: University of Houston, University of Houston -Downtown, University of Houston-Clear Lake and University of Houston-Victoria.

University of Houston System Chancellor Renu Khator attended a signing ceremony at the Johnson Space Center on June 10, where she met with JSC Director Vanessa Wyche to discuss the partnership. Loren Blanchard and Richard Walker, presidents of UH-Downtown and UH-Clear Lake respectively, were also present.

“Houston is ‘Space City,’ so it’s important that students and faculty in relevant disciplines in the UH system have the opportunity to engage with and be exposed to spaceflight-related research and technology development around the world. real with NASA,” Khator said. “These are the types of projects that shape lives and create innovations for the greater good.”

Areas of focus for this partnership encompass science, engineering, technology and business disciplines that are vital to human and robotic spaceflight missions, airborne and ground-based research, including data analysis, cybersecurity and other emerging technologies – all areas facing critical labor shortages. Entrepreneurship students at UH, for example, are currently working to commercialize various NASA technologies.

Engaging in this partnership with the UH system will allow Johnson Space Center to close the gap in the development of mission-relevant technologies essential for future human spaceflight missions, and to inspire and engage students in the fields of aeronautics, space and science, according to Wyche.

“NASA’s Johnson Space Center has a long history of working with colleges and universities since the early days of the Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo programs to help us achieve our human spaceflight missions,” Wyche said. “We look forward to partnering and collaborating with the University of Houston system in vital research and technology development initiatives that will enable us to achieve our nation’s exploration goals and advance spaceflight.” inhabited as we work to land the first woman and first person of color on the Moon under Artemis.

Universities across the UH system have collaborated with NASA for more than half a century on a variety of educational and outreach activities, most recently with the UH Subsea Systems Institute, but this renewed focus will broaden the scope of opportunities across the system. UH.

NASA’s Office of STEM Engagement will work with UH-Downtown, for example, to target students (pre-service teachers) primarily in the Department of Urban Education at the Civil Service College to identify opportunities learning and providing links to NASA missions and working through seminars. , campus-wide open houses, class tours and more.

UH-Clear Lake and NASA, given their geographic proximity, have had a symbiotic relationship since the Manned Spacecraft Center (now Johnson Space Center) was established in 1961. Collaboration on academic programming and research would only grow. expand under the new agreement-wide system.

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