Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Monday, October 9, 2017

68th International Astronautical Congress- Australia

I had the fabulous opportunity to present my most recent research paper (regarding keeping girls interested in science as they move on in grade levels) at the 68th International Astronautical Congress in Adelaide, Australia, and it was a "blast"!

The paper can be viewed at:

In addition to presenting, the five-day event included learning from others and networking; with the highlights being Bill Nye's presentation on the Planetary Society's Lightsail, and Elon Musk's vision for the future of space travel:

Bill Nye:
Elon Musk:

See photos below for more highlights:

Members of GRULAC: Space agencies from Central & South America

NASA astronaut Sandy Magnus.

My fourth time to see Bill Nye.

Regional members at the IAC exhibit.

Commander Nader: 10 years of collaboration.

Astronaut Event

My presentation on helping girls to maintain there interste in science, as they progress from elementary to middle school, by embedding aerospace education in the curriculum.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

NASA/Cubes in Space - Two Student Experiments Launched!

Isabel Escobar, one of 17 students in Academia Cotopaxi's after school NASA/CIS Club, presented at NASA's Wallop's Flight Center; both on-stage and during a student exhibit. She explained how the data received from space flight on the Terrier-Improved Orion Sounding rocket - for one, of the two accepted experiments for rocket launch - will contribute to human space flight. The remaining three experiments will be launched in an edge-of-space balloon in August, and then the data will be analyzed and shared during the fall of 2017. Great job, Isabel!

** See presentation video at:

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

NASA/Cubes in Space - Experiments Ready to be Sent and Launched!

     NASA/CIS after school students have successfully completed the construction of their five science experiments, now ready for launch on a NASA rocket or edge-of-space balloon! View the video clip for an understanding of the inquiry process that's taken place for this project-based learning opportunity: When the data is obtained in the fall of 2017, students will proceed to the analytical and sharing portion of this fabulous, global opportunity!

     While all experiments have meaningful applications for space exploration, the properties being explored include the following:
  • Two experiments will launch from a sounding rocket at NASA Wallops Flight Facility. The pinto bean experiment will test the effects of extreme launch forces, as well as the bombardment of radiation from the ionosphere and space on the growth of plants from seeds. The kinetic sand experiment is to determine if the sand can withstand the extreme forces associated with rocket launches and micro gravity.
  • Three experiments will launch from and edge-of-space balloon at NASA's Colombia Scientific Balloon Facility. Experiments include, once again, pinto beans and kinetic sand, as well as ultrasound gel; the purpose of which is to determine if the materials can tolerate conditions found in space, such as extreme radiation temperature fluctuation conditions. 
     For more information, check out the following link:

Friday, April 14, 2017

Cubes in Space: Press Release - April 14, 2017

All FIVE science proposals, completed by seventeen 5th to 8th grade students in the "Cubes in Space/NASA Club", were accepted for flight into space! See the CIS press release below:

     Cubes in Space™ is a program by idoodledu inc., in collaboration with NASA’s Langley Research Center, NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility and Colorado Space Grant Consortium, offers global design competitions for students 11-18 years of age to develop STEAM-based experiments for launch into space.

Used in formal or informal learning environments, students and educators are exposed to engaging online content and activities in preparation for the design and development of an experiment to be integrated into a small cube. Throughout the experience, students develop key 21st century skills; communication, collaboration, critical thinking and creativity.

     Since 2014, Cubes in Space has flown nearly 400 experiments representing 1500 educators and over 20,000 students from 57 different countries. This year nearly 600 educators and thousands of students from 39 countries participated and proposed experiments for a space on a NASA sounding rocket or high-altitude scientific balloon mission.  A total of 160 experiments were selected and were designed by students from Australia, Austria, Canada, Colombia, Ecuador, India, Mexico, Serbia, the United Arab Emirates, Uruguay, the and the United States of America.

     The experiments will be launched via sounding rocket in late June 2017 from NASA Wallops Flight Facility on the Eastern Shore of Virginia or by high-altitude scientific balloon in late summer 2017 from NASA’s Columbia Scientific Balloon Facility in Ft. Sumner, New Mexico.