National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA
New NASA Administrator welcomes challenges of transition
On his first day of work, NASA's Aware that many employees were tions from audiences at NASA Head-
new Administrator Michael Griffin, ad- wondering about the future of NASA, quarters and among the field centers.
dressed NASA employees across the Griffin provided some answers, while The first question came from an em-
nation from Washington via satellite on attempting to put them at ease. ployee at NASA Headquarters, "It seems
The new Administrator outlined his like each of the mission directorates have
upcoming schedule, and said his first large challenges," the employee noted.
priority is "return to flight." Following "How do you deal with them all at once?"
that, Griffin said he would receive brief- "I won't solve them all," Griffin re-
ings about NASA and then he vowed to sponded, referring to the current prob-
tour all of NASA's centers. lems that face the Agency’s mission di-
“My goals are to listen to you," Grif- rectorates. "We will bring out a team of
fin said. During its transition, said Grif- people (to solve them)," he explained.
fin, NASA will be reshaped. "There are He added that he has rarely seen a more
going to be some difficult decisions to precise statement of a mission by gov-
make," Griffin observed. "There will be ernment official than that laid out by the
tough choices." He pledged to make President when he outlined a Vision for
those choices “as fairly and humanely Space Exploration.
as I can.” "We will reshape NASA according
Following his brief presentation, to the President's vision,” Griffin de-
Griffin opened the forum up to ques- continued on page 2
South Bay Congressional reps visit Ames
The loss of jobs at Ames, reductions For the first time in recent memory,
NASA Administrator Michael Griffin in mission-enabling research and the three local U.S. representatives visited
effects of focusing NASA’s efforts on Ames as a group because of concerns
April 14, one day after being confirmed returning human beings to the moon about the Center's future. Rep. Anna
by the U.S. Senate as NASA’s 11th Ad-
NASA photo by Dominic Hart
"That's probably the fastest confir-
mation on record," quipped Griffin, ex-
pressing his appreciation for the confi-
dence shown him by the lawmakers.
Although his presentation was hast-
ily arranged, Griffin spoke confidently
in a poised, frank manner about NASA's
prospects, displayed a good sense of
humor and insisted on being called sim-
ply "Mike' or “Michael," pointing out
that “the NASA administration is not
President George W. Bush nomi-
nated Griffin as NASA Administrator in
March, while he was serving as the head
of the Space Department at Johns
Hopkins University’s Applied Physics
Laboratory in Baltimore. Griffin said he
was “intensely proud” to be nominated
for the position to succeed Sean O’Keefe,
who left the Agency in February.
From left to right: U.S. Rep. Anna Eshoo (14th District); Ames Center Director G. Scott Hubbard;
Looking ahead as NASA undergoes
transformation in order to meet the goals U.S. Rep. Zoe Lofgren (16th District); and U.S. Rep. Mike Honda (15th District). The congressional
of the Vision for Space Exploration, Grif- representatives were at NASA Ames on April 4 to hold a discussion concerning the on-going NASA
fin noted that “it’s going to be difficult, transformation, and affirmed NASA Ames’ important role in providing cutting-edge science and
and it’s going to be hectic…but we’re technology in Silicon Valley.
going to do this together. The day we
lost Columbia was probably the worst and exploring Mars were the primary Eshoo (14th District), Rep. Mike Honda
day we ever had, but out of that accident topics during a unique, jam-packed (15th District), and Rep. Zoe Lofgren
came a new vision for NASA," Griffin meeting in the main auditorium on (16th District) made brief opening state-
asserted. April 4. continued on page 5
New NASA Administrator welcomes challenges of transition
continued from front page
clared. He added that to accomplish "Again, aeronautics is a core func- laboratories were created. He said he
NASA's goals, he will surround himself tion of NASA," he stated. "It has been would not distinguish between univer-
with "capable people'," and joked that "a hard hit," he added. "We do live in a sity-run laboratories and those that em-
manager should be the dumbest person world of limited resources, " he contin- ploy civil servants. "It would be impru-
on his team." ued. "Aero doesn't rate zero." He ex- dent to ask companies to do things those
A second questioner from NASA plained that even during the age of companies would not (otherwise) un-
Headquarters said that basic science has Apollo, when NASA strove to fly to the dertake," he said, beginning to explain
seemed to “fall by the wayside. “ Griffin moon, "we also did a lot of other things, the role of those laboratories and NASA's
disagreed and said that he thinks too." He said that NASA flew 199 X-15 centers. He maintained that the role of
NASA’s science program is one of flights, conducted lifting body research the federal laboratories is very impor-
"NASA's crown jewels." and a lot more. tant.
Nevertheless, Griffin agreed that Another telephone query from Griffin carefully pointed out that
"there is no doubt there has been dam- Marshall Space flight Center in Hunts- competition also is " healthy, even for
age (to science at NASA)." He said that ville, Ala., asked what Griffin learned federal centers." But he added that he
while the loss of the Columbia has caused outside of NASA that will help "for- did not want competition to close a labo-
temporary dislocations of science at the ward" NASA's mission? ratory so the last person out of the door
agency, he said future budgets call for "One of the things I've seen outside would have to "turn off the lights."
increases in science. NASA in the high-tech world, is the He said he would strive towards an
"People are concerned about the fu- engine of competition," he said, adding appropriate balance between competi-
ture of Earth science and aeronautics," that people within NASA "get immune tion and assigned projects at NASA cen-
he said and noted that budget cuts “have to it. We need to open our eyes up to that ters. "There should not be so much pain
to be done with a scalpel and not a meat (competition)," he ventured, suggesting that (we) would (end up with impotent
ax.” that NASA needs to bring the nation's laboratories)," he added. Competition
Another question from an employee industrial capacity into the agency. will only work if there are enough com-
at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida In response to a question from Glenn petitors, according to Griffin. "We only
inquired about the public’s reaction to Research Center in Cleveland, asking have one Navy… Some things that the
the national Vision for Space Explora- how to pursue research in a competitive nation does are simply too big."
tion. arena, Griffin said, "As much as I have Griffin said that NASA Johnson
Griffin responded that with NASA’s been impressed (by industrial competi- Space Center, Houston, would head the
annual budget of approximately $16 bil- tion) . . . I am not so foolish (to think) that job of making NASA's next spaceship
lion "the country could purchase quite a it is a cure for all (we do)." that will carry human beings. "I do be-
variety of space programs, and so the Griffin said that while there is a lieve…. some core missions that NASA
question of what we do with the money" need for competition in government re- does must be assigned," he emphasized.
is a legitimate one. "When I talk to search, there also is a need for govern- As he ended the question-and-an-
people about the Vision, I get nothing ment laboratories to conduct research swer session he said, "I look forward to
but cheers," he reported. and projects that industry would not helping." The crowd at NASA Head-
A questioner from Langley Research undertake. quarters clapped, and some people
Center in Hampton, Va., asked about Griffin explained that during World smiled.
the future of aeronautics at NASA. War II, a host of federally sponsored On April 18, Griffin held his first
news conference as the new NASA Ad-
ministrator. Addressing reporters gath-
Ames ‘situation room’ officially opens ered at NASA Headquarters in Wash-
ington and at various NASA field cen-
The Ames New Busi- ters, Griffin vowed to “try to be more
NASA photo by Dominic Hart
ness Office has established accessible, not less accessible” to the
a ‘situation room’ located news media and said that he planned to
in Bldg. 244, Room 203B. establish a new program analysis and
to provide a unique meet- evaluation shop headed by Dr. Scott
ing and work space for de- Pace to provide “forward looking plan-
veloping new business ning and analysis” of the Agency’s pro-
ideas. grams. He also told reporters that he
Designed as a ‘think would rely heavily on the advice of sea-
tank’ for new business soned NASA managers in making key
planning and strategy de- decisions related to Return to Flight.
velopment, the situation Griffin was president and chief op-
room houses a variety of erating officer of In-Q-Tel, Inc., before
information about Ames joining Johns Hopkins in April 2004. He
capabilities, new business
pursuits, potential custom- The Ames New Business Office 'Situation Room' open also served in several positions within
ers and funding opportu- house and ribbon cutting event held in March. Orbital Sciences Corporation, Dulles,
nities. An open house and Va., including chief executive officer of
ribbon cutting ceremony was held in workspace and the informative envi- Magellan Systems, Inc.
March in the situation room. ronment: bring your ideas and col- Earlier in his career, Administrator
The situation room is open from leagues. Griffin served as chief engineer at NASA
8:30 a.m. to noon for drop-in visits, To learn more about the situation and as deputy for Technology at the
and 1:00 p.m. to 5 p.m. for scheduled room, visit the New Business Strategic Defense Initiative Organiza-
sessions such as seminars brainstorm- Office Web site at http:// tion. He has served as an adjunct profes-
ing sessions. Take advantage of the NewBusiness.arc.nasa.gov. sor at the University of Maryland, Johns
continued on page 8
Astrogram 2 April 2005
Prospective tenants ‘explore space’ at NRP open house
said Antoinette Price, NRP account man-
ager and interior expert who created the
sunny hallways. "This was a first of its
kind. But then, we should not be sur-
prised because this is NASA," she said.
NASA Research Park account managers
Antoinette Price (left) and Cyndi Carbon-
Norman (second from left) speak with visitors
from Lockheed Martin who came to see
Mejghan Haider, chief of the NASA Research Park Division, speaks with a reporter available lease space in building 19.
from the Palo Alto Daily News at the first NRP open house held in March.
The public-private partnerships in
Steady rain and gray skies did not have another open house and sympo- the NRP will benefit the Center in two
keep prospective tenants from visiting sium this summer," said Mejghan ways, said Haider. The increased po-
the sunny halls of two newly refurbished Haider, division chief, NASA Research tential for collaboration and partnership
wings in Bldg. 19 in March at NASA Park. will strengthen our research programs,
Research Park (NRP) Division's first Visitors from numerous small and and revenue generation will help re-
open house event. large companies, non-profits and uni- duce the G&A burden to the Center, she
"This was our first effort to aggres- versity research labs toured second floor said. Haider went on to thank all em-
sively market the existing facilities wings and available first floor space dur- ployees who dropped by and encour-
within the NRP. We had a great turnout ing the four-hour late afternoon event. aged their associates to attend.
and have over 30 prospects. We plan to "We were wowed by the response,"
NASA Research Park
welcomes these new tenants
Inland Northwest Space Alliance (INSA)
-- Univ. of Montana space advocacy non-profit organization.
Fireball NASA photos by Dominic Hart
-- Nationally registered provider of incident support services The celebration cake at the recent NASA
for wild land fires. Research Park first open house event.
-- Developer of comprehensive dynamic motion technology For more information about NASA
providing realistic motion in digital world. Research Park visit the Web at http://
NXAR LLC BY DIANE FARRAR
-- Software development for knowledge network systems.
Venezia Construction, Inc.
-- SBA/HUB Zone certified on-site construction.
Astrogram 3 April 2005
‘Exploring Saturn’ family event draws in crowds
On April 16, NASA Ames hosted
‘Exploring Saturn’ at Ames as another
installment in the highly successful and
ongoing family night education series.
The free event was open to the public
and was geared toward all ages of kids
and adults. As estimated 3,000 people
attended the event.
Hosted by the External Relations
and Development Directorate and spon-
sored by the NASA Ames Education
Office, the event was held in conjunc-
tion with National Astronomy Day and
featured NASA's exploration of Saturn
and its moons. The event included the
latest images and data from the Cassini-
Huygens spacecraft, which arrived at
the ringed planet in the summer of 2004.
An estimated 3,000 people attended the
‘Exploring Saturn’ event held at NASA Ames on
The event began with family-ori-
ented educational exhibits and activi-
ties. Then, a panel of planetary scien-
tists and mission experts presented and
explained information arriving from the
Cassini satellite currently orbiting Sat-
urn and the related Huygens probe,
which landed on Titan earlier this year.
Later, visitors were able to conduct
NASA photos by Astrid Terlep their own first-hand explorations of Sat-
‘Exploring Saturn’ family event attendees on April 16 waiting in line for a chance to peek at Saturn urn and its fascinating rings and moons
through the telescopes that were provided by the Peninsula Astronomical Society. through a variety of telescopes set up by
the Peninsula Astronomical Society.
Return to Flight astronauts visit Ames
Return to Flight space shuttle com- have been training at
NASA photo by Dominic Hrat
mander Eileen M. Collins and pilot the vertical motion
James M. Kelly were available for a 15- simulator since the
minute question-and-answer session early 1980s.
with the news media in March. The VMS com-
The astronauts were at NASA plex provides re-
Ames to train at the center's vertical searchers with excep-
motion simulator (VMS). The STS-114 tional tools to explore,
Discovery mission to the International define and solve is-
Space Station is scheduled for launch sues in both aircraft
between May 15 and June 3. and spacecraft design.
While in the simulator, Collins It offers fast and cost-
and Kelly practiced space shuttle land- effective solutions, us-
ing and safety procedures. The VMS ing real-time piloted
accurately produces various landing simulation, realistic Return to Flight space shuttle commander Eileen Collins and pilot
scenarios, including landing at night, sensory cues and the James Kelly at Ames on March 23.
landing with heavy cross winds or greatest motion range
landing with a flat tire. The astronauts of any flight simula-
will 'land' the shuttle as many as 30 tor in the world. In addition to the space the CH-47D Chinook helicopter and
times during their four hours of train- shuttle, the VMS has simulated vehicles concept aircraft and spacecraft.
ing in the simulator. Astronaut crews including the AV-8 Harrier jet fighter,
Astrogram 4 April 2005
South Bay Congressional reps visit with Ames employees
continued from front page
ments and then fielded questions from Ames is receiving from the Science Di- tors Boxer and Feinstein understand
concerned Center scientists, engineers rectorate at NASA Headquarters for “what these proposed cuts will do to
and support staff. Ames faces a more key programs such as the Stratospheric NASA Ames,” Eshoo explained.
than $120 million shortfall in its fiscal Observatory for Infrared Astronomy "Another strategy is to work with
2006 budget, according to a letter the (SOFIA). A recent external evaluation of Congressman Honda," (who serves on
representatives sent to Michael Griffin, SOFIA deter-
the man nominated by President Bush mined that the
NASA photo by Dominic Hrat
to be NASA's next administrator. quality of science
"This is a tremendous opportunity," from the new air-
said G. Scott Hubbard, Ames' center borne observatory
director, as he introduced the trio. Call- should be on a par
ing Eshoo, Honda and Lofgren “three of with that of the
our very best friends,” Hubbard noted Hubble Space
“whenever there are trying times, you Telescope. “This is
find out who your friends are. I can’t a tremendous
imagine three better friends of Ames achievement for
than these folks.” Ames Research
Before the guests addressed the au- Center,” Hubbard
dience, Hubbard outlined the issues fac- observed.
ing Ames. Among those critical chal- According to
lenges is full-cost accounting. "Our [as- Hubbard, the
trobiology] scientists are being priced South Bay con-
out of the market," he said. Because Ames gressional repre-
astrobiologists must include their entire sentatives wanted From left to right: U.S. Rep. Anna Eshoo (14th District); U.S. Rep. Zoe
year’s salary within a competitive grant to have a discus- Lofgren (16th District); and U.S. Rep. Mike Honda (15th District) at
application, they are unable to compete sion about the on- NASA Ames on April 4.
against tenured university professors, going NASA
who typically need to include only two transformation and affirm the impor- the Science, Space and Technology Com-
months’ salary in their grant proposals. tant role that NASA Ames, as an inte- mittee,) she said. She added that the
Hubbard noted that about 25 per- gral part of the Silicon Valley commu- delegation plans to meet with the ap-
cent of Ames’ budget is involved with nity, plays in cutting-edge science and propriators who recommend funding
some type of advanced technology work. technology. Honda serves on NASA's for the various programs. They also plan
“That budget is being drastically reduced authorization committee, and he also to partner with congressional delega-
from previous years,” he said. Although has coauthored nanotechnology legisla- tions from districts that include other
Ames is competing well where there are tion, according to Hubbard. NASA centers facing critical budget is-
opportunities, “we have staff at risk and “We have many challenges. We have sues.
commitments to various programs at many opportunities,” Hubbard con- Eshoo referred to a letter the South
risk” as a result of the program changes. cluded. Bay delegation recently sent to NASA
Ames life sciences research also Eshoo, as the senior congressional administrator nominee Griffin, “outlin-
is “at a crossroads,” according to representative present and the one ing what the priorities are, how critical
Hubbard, and “it could be eliminated.” whose district encompasses NASA they are, not just for NASA Ames, but
The Space Station Biological Research Ames, addressed the assembled employ- for the future of our country.” She said
Project at Ames, which Hubbard de- ees first. The fact that all three South Bay that “it is incumbent upon us to … se-
scribed as the “last fundamental scien- congressional representatives came to cure partners from the private sector” to
tific research element of the Interna- Ames as a team “is really an eloquent show the Congress that private-sector
tional Space Station,” may be ‘zeroed statement” about Ames employees and companies in Silicon Valley understand
out’ in the FY2006 budget. Without this the center as a whole, she said. “It un- what Ames represents to the nation.
capability, Hubbard said NASA will be derscores not only our commitment, but The letter also says that there is a
severely challenged to understand the the seriousness of the case that is before shortfall of $40 million for research in
effects of the space environment on hu- us.” new technology at Ames for fiscal year
mans and provide the necessary coun- "We had a collective heart attack" 2006 in the areas of intelligent systems,
termeasures for long-term human space- when the President's budget came out, nanotechnology and thermal protection
flight. Eshoo stated. Then, she said, they knew systems.
Hubbard believes that Ames has they had to devise a strategy. "One of The letter concludes, "NASA Ames'
“fared better” in aeronautics, with con- my first questions … was, 'how is the staff and abilities should be considered
tinued funding for air space manage- morale?'” a national treasure that deserves our
ment and hopes for future funding of "You have a fighting team … and fullest support as it continues to shape
the program to transform the national you'll need one…," Eshoo ventured. "You the technologies and understanding that
airspace. Ames’ research in human fac- have to build coalitions inside the will guide our nation in the 21st Cen-
tors also took a hit from a variety of Congress…and outside the Congress," tury."
congressional ‘earmarks,’ although, she added, noting that Congress is a According to Eshoo, not only NASA,
Hubbard said, he is hopeful that fund- reactive, not a proactive, institution. but also other federal agencies are expe-
ing will be restored in the future. Other Eshoo then spoke of strategy. "We met riencing cuts in the basic research area.
aeronautics programs, including rotor- with our two U.S senators [from Califor- "We are cutting back on the innovation"
craft, are not funded at all in the budget nia]," she said. "They most willingly met for the future of our great nation, ac-
proposal. with us. They got it," she reported, refer- cording to Eshoo.
Hubbard acknowledged the support ring to the situation at Ames. Both Sena- continued on page 13
Astrogram 5 April 2005
Sridhar receives IEEE Control Systems Technology Award
Banavar Sridhar, chief, Automation ful flight demonstration of his real-time pability now referred to as the Future
Concepts Branch, Aviation Systems Di- obstacle detection and ranging algo- Air Transportation System Concept
vision, received the 2004 Institute of Elec- rithms on a NASA/Army UH-60 heli- Evaluation Tool (FACET). FACET in-
copter in June 1996. His methodology cludes a set of air traffic models and
led to continuing work at universities analysis tools that have become a stan-
and other government laboratories. The dard for system-level analysis. FACET
NASA Aeronautics Advisory Commit- is key to exploring many of the new
tee commended his research as being at concepts in traffic flow management and
the forefront of spatial signal processing has already been used to make key in-
and providing an excellent balance be- vestment decisions.
tween algorithm development and ex- Several organizations have re-
perimental validation. quested and received a copy of the
In the last seven years, Sridhar has FACET software under NASA Non-Dis-
redirected his research interests in re- closure and/or Licensing Agreements.
sponse to the nation's goal to provide FACET received the 2001 NASA Turn-
the technology to improve the safety ing Goals into Reality (TGIR) Award.
and capacity of the nation’s air transpor- During 2002, FACET received NASA
tation system. As a part of this research, Space Act Board Award and NASA
Sridhar identified the need for an analy- Space Act Software Release Award.
sis tool that could be used to validate the Currently, FACET is being incorporated
usefulness of the proposed technologies into a commercial product referred to as
Banavar Sridhar under a variety of conditions. This led Flight Explorer that is used by many of
to his design and development of a ca- continued next page
trical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)
Control Systems Technology for the Gabriel Zavala-Diaz passes away
development of modeling and simula-
tion techniques for multi-vehicle traffic porting X-37, Mars Science Lab, In-Space
networks and advanced air traffic man- Propulsion, Huygens/Cassini and Re-
agement systems through innovative ap- turn To Flight, as well as for in-house
plication of control systems concepts. materials development tests and test to
The award recognizes outstanding con- characterize the facilities. He was de-
tributions to control systems technol- scribed by his colleagues as a conscien-
ogy either in design and implementa- tious worker and approached his job
tion or project management. The award with extreme professionalism.
consists of $2,000, a plaque and travel Zavala-Diaz is remembered as a true
expenses to the IEEE Conference on gentleman with a zest for life and a sense
Decision and Control. of humor. He is survived by two young
Sridhar has a long and distinguished children, Isela Brianna and Gabriel Isaac,
career in flight dynamics, controls and wife, Christina, mother and father,Teresa
more recently air traffic management. and Rafael, and two sisters, Yesmina
He is widely recognized in industry and Lissetta and Cynthia Liliana.
academia for his pioneering work in the A flag ceremony in honor of him
application of singular perturbation Gabriel Zavala-Diaz
was held at Ames on March 24. Ap-
theory to the real-time optimal guid- proximately 40 family members at-
ance of missiles against maneuvering tended. Following the ceremony, TSF
targets (1980). In the late 1980s, while at Gabriel Zavala-Diaz,
Lockheed Research Center, he shifted test engineer in the Ames
his research to address the identifica- ARC Jet complex, Code
NASA photo by Cesar Acosta
tion and control of large space struc- TSF, passed away on Feb.
tures. Again, Sridhar’s contributions 26 at the age of 29.
were central to this evolving area of Zavala-Diaz joined
research and were included in the de- NASA in November 2001
sign of major space structures including as an engineering assistant
the Space Infrared Telescope Facility and for the Planetary Aeolian
the space station. Facility while pursuing his
In 1986, Sridhar joined NASA, where bachelors degree in me-
he initiated a research effort in com- chanical engineering from
puter vision for obstacle detection in San Jose State University.
low altitude helicopter flight. He de- Upon receiving his BS/ME
vised an innovative approach for inte- in May 2003, he joined the
grating airborne state information with Themophysics Facilities
digital imagery for detecting range in- Branch as a test engineer. Teresa and Rafael, Gabriel’s mother and father, receive a
formation to obstacles along the flight Zavala-Diaz quickly ceremonial flag in honor of their son Gabriel Zavala-Diaz.
path of a vehicle. The incorporation of a matured into a valuable
vision sensor for navigation and guid- member of the branch, exhibiting a hosted the family to tour Zavala-Diaz’s
ance is essential to the design of many unique drive and motivation. He served work environment.
robotic and intelligent systems. Sridhar as test engineer for Ames jet tests sup-
achieved a major ‘first’ with the success- BY IMELDA TERRAZAS-SALINAS
Astrogram 6 April 2005
Ames and Aerospace Corp. to make 'Black Box' for Spacecraft
NASA Ames and a nonprofit part- The REBR is designed to collect data materials and sensors," said Ethiraj
ner recently agreed to develop the first as a spacecraft reenters the atmosphere Venkatapathy, planetary exploration
'black box' for spacecraft and hope to and breaks apart due to aerodynamic technology manager at NASA Ames.
test a prototype as early as 2006. heating and loads. After the high-speed The team is using nanotechnology to
develop very small, inexpensive sen-
Model of the Reentry sors.
Breakup Recorder Nanotechnology is the creation of
(spacecraft 'black box') to materials, devices and systems through
scale. The addition of the the control of matter on the nanometer
heat shield is expected to scale. A nanometer is one-billionth of a
bring its size closer to 1 meter, roughly 10,000 times smaller than
foot (0.3 meters) in the width of a human hair.
diameter. "Nanotechnology could lead to changes
in almost everything from computers
and medicine to automobiles and space-
craft," said James Arnold, a scientist with
the NASA Ames Center for
"The initial focus of the collabora-
tion will be on development of small
reentry probes," said William Ailor, di-
rector of the Center for Orbital and Re-
A joint program between Ames and portion of the reentry, the REBR would entry Debris Studies at The Aerospace
the Aerospace Corporation, El Segundo, 'phone home' to relay data by satellite Corporation and Aerospace lead for the
Calif., will develop a spacecraft black prior to impact. The spacecraft black effort.
box, among many other low-cost, min- box is only one of many small, light- "Similar technologies could be used
iature space systems, according to a weight, low-cost devices the partners on an Ames concept called Scout Probes
NASA-Aerospace agreement. Black plan to develop. These new devices for Exploration," Rasky said. "This con-
boxes carried on aircraft record airplane would allow NASA and the Aerospace cept makes use of small entry probes to
data such as speed, altitude and crew Corporation to flight test miniature sen- gather information and reconnaissance
conversations. This information can be sor systems to gather temperature, pres- on atmospheric conditions, surface con-
recovered after an accident to help in- sure and other data, or to validate ther- ditions and hazards. These probes also
vestigators learn the cause of a mishap. mal protection systems for human mis- could serve as landing beacons for fol-
The black box often includes a beacon sions. lowing piloted or robotic vehicles. Scout
that helps investigators find the box. "Aerospace may use these devices Probes for Exploration could be a criti-
"Microspacecraft that can collect to gather data during the reentry and cal new capability for reducing risks
spaceflight data and return it to Earth breakup of space hardware to validate encountered with remote exploration
will enhance space travel reliability and calibrate models, and NASA Ames landings," Rasky ventured.
through better designs," said Ames may use them to test new heat shield BY JOHN BLUCK
Center Director G. Scott Hubbard.
Hubbard recently signed an agreement
with William F. Ballhaus Jr., Aerospace
president and chief executive officer, to
develop the black box.
Sridhar receives IEEE Award
continued from previous page
"People had not figured how to put the Airline Operation Centers for the
black boxes on spacecraft before because speed helicopter operations.
the boxes would tend to burn up during management and routing of their indi- In 2001, Ames Basic Research Coun-
reentry," said Dan Rasky, a scientist at vidual fleets. The FAA has included a cil elected him as an Ames Associate
NASA Ames. The Center is contribut- portion of the FACET functionality in its Fellow. Additionally, Sridhar has a long
ing its spacecraft heat shield expertise to latest release of the En Route Traffic and distinguished record of service to
the development effort. Management System (ETMS). the aerospace community. He has served
"One of the first uses of these space- Sridhar is widely recognized by his the AIAA in various capacities includ-
craft black boxes may be on the Crew peers for his many contributions. He ing technical program chair for the 1999
Exploration Vehicle," Rasky explained. received the Bay Area chapter of the AIAA Guidance, Navigation and Con-
The Crew Exploration Vehicle is a fu- AIAA; Engineer of the Year Award in trol (GNC) Conference; conference pro-
ture spaceship that NASA plans to use the category of information systems gram co-chair for the 1998 AIAA GNC
to fly people to the moon and beyond. (1991); IEEE AES Barry Carlton Award conference; and a member of the AIAA
The basis for the effort to develop (1994); NASA Exceptional Service Medal GNC technical committee. Outside the
low-cost spacecraft technologies is the (1995); and the Best Paper Award by the AIAA, he has served on the editorial
reentry breakup recorder (REBR), a one- American Helicopter Society (1996). board of IEEE Transactions on Auto-
foot (0.3-meter) diameter, 2.2-pound Sridhar was elected Fellow of the IEEE matic Control; IEEE Controls Systems
(one-kilogram) device that will have a (2001) for advances in computer vision- magazine; IFAC Journal Control Engi-
heat shield, batteries, data recorder, sen- based obstacle detection and develop- neering Practice; International Journal
sors and a transmitter. ments in low-altitude helicopter flight. of Machine Vision and Applications; and
The REBR has been under develop- AIAA elected Sridhar to Fellow (2001) as guest editor for IEEE Transactions on
ment at Aerospace for the past several grade for his fundamental contributions Intelligent Transportation Systems Spe-
years, with NASA Ames responsible for to automated guidance of aerospace cial Issue on Air Traffic Control Sys-
the entry system. vehicles and the development of a pas- tems.
sive ranging system for low-altitude high
Astrogram 7 April 2005
Vernikos to deliver NRP-sponsored talk at Ames
Ames employees and their families the symptoms of 'normal' aging. Her lecture by journalist and author Andrew
are invited to attend a free public lecture pioneering work at Ames focused on Chaikin. Chaikin is most known for his
on May 4, featuring author and former 'bedrest' studies, in which healthy hu- best-selling book ‘Apollo’ an intimate
director of life sciences at NASA, Dr. mans underwent long periods of immo- insider's look at the original Apollo 9
Joan Vernikos. bility in bed, mimicking micro-gravity astronauts.
Vernikos, who worked at Ames in conditions in space. Her breakthrough
the 1960s, will discuss the connection research created a deeper understand-
between space exploration, space biol- ing of the hormonal and behavioral
ogy research and the aging process at mechanisms that underlie human re-
the second NASA Research Park (NRP) sponse to the stress of long-duration
lecture. The talk will be held May 4 at 7 spaceflight.
p.m. in Bldg. 943 (the Eagle Room), just Vernikos' talk at Ames will focus on
outside the NASA Ames main gate. how to live a vital, healthy life, as dis-
Vernikos has an impressive resume. cussed in her latest book ‘The G-Con-
She served as director of Life Sciences at nection: Harness Gravity and Reverse
NASA Headquarters from 1993 to 2000. Aging".
She joined NASA Ames Research Cen- "The intent of the NRP lecture series
ter as a researcher in 1966 after four is to highlight exploration, in keeping
years at Ohio StateUniversity Medical with NASA's Vision for Space Explora-
School, where she was assistant profes- tion," said Mejghan Haider, NRP divi-
sor of pharmacology. sion chief. The series will focus on three
Trained in London, Vernikos themes -- 'explore, discover and under- Author Dr. Joan Vernikos will discuss ‘Space
held academic appointments at Stanford stand,' she noted. "Stay tuned. Our top- Exploration: Can Gravity Reverse Aging?’ at
University, Wright State University ics will include everything from new the NRP Exploration Lecture Series on May 4
School of Medicine and was visiting technologies that support human mis- at 7 p.m. in Bldg. 943 in the Eagle Room.
professor at the University of London. sions to the moon and Mars, to autono-
During her early years as a space mous robots and Earth analog research," After a year's hiatus, the lecture se-
biology researcher at NASA, Vernikos she said. ries is now on a regular, three times a
quickly noticed the connection between The NRP Exploration Lecture Se- year basis. In February 2005, author,
what happens to the body in space and ries was launched in Spring 2004 with a explorer and adventurer John Ross
talked about exploration and risk to an
overflow audience. Dr. Seth Shostak,
senior astronomer at the SETI Institute,
Wildlife thrives at Ames served as master of ceremonies.
NASA photos by Dominic Hart
BY KATHLEEN BURTON
continued from page 2
Hopkins University and George Wash-
He taught courses in spacecraft de-
sign, applied mathematics, guidance and
navigation, compressible flow, compu-
tational fluid dynamics, spacecraft atti-
tude control, astrodynamics and intro-
ductory aerospace engineering. He is
the lead author of more than two dozen
technical papers, as well as the textbook,
‘Space Vehicle Design.’
A registered professional engineer
in Maryland and California, the Admin-
istrator is a fellow of the American Insti-
The Plover Killdeer bird, tute of Aeronautics and Astronautics
above, that is currently (AIAA). He is a recipient of the NASA
nesting in the rocks on King Exceptional Achievement Medal, the
Road at NASA Ames, AIAA Space Systems Medal and the
protecting her four speckled Department of Defense Distinguished
eggs, shown to the right. Public Service Medal, the highest award
given to a non-government employee.
He is a certified flight instructor with
instrument and multiengine ratings.
BY JOHN BLUCK
Astrogram 8 April 2005
NASA adds a physical element to learning mathematics
NASA is testing an innovative ap- used to help them maintain an assigned Systems Program is a division of NASA's
proach to help improve student perfor- speed. Walkie-talkies allow them to hear Aeronautics Research Mission Director-
mance in mathematics by challenging
them to solve the real-world problems
involved with controlling airplanes in
During the month of April, NASA
scientists and education experts at NASA
Ames are conducting student evalua-
tions of 'Smart Skies', one of NASA's
newest math-related educational prod-
ucts. Smart Skies takes math to a new
level by adding an experiential, hands-
on component that enables students to
participate in real-life interactive simu-
lations. The evaluation began on April 5
with middle schools in the San Francisco
Bay area and continues through the end
of the month.
"We are very excited about this,"
said Robert Jacobsen, manager of
NASA's Airspace Systems Program lo-
cated at NASA Ames. "Both retired and
active FAA air traffic controllers from
Oakland Center volunteered to help as
docents and to give guidance and sup-
port to the students who are participat-
ing in the exercise."
The Smart Skies project is designed
to encourage students to explore, dis-
cover and understand mathematics and instructions from the student control- ate located in Washington, D.C.
its applications in daily life. At the heart lers. For additional information
of Smart Skies is a carefully constructed In the simulated control room, stu- about Smart Skies™ visit: http://
set of instructional materials that in- dent controllers watch the aircraft move- quest.arc.nasa.gov/projects/
cludes classroom materials, Web-based ment on a computer screen that displays smart_skies/
simulations and the hands-on simula- speed and distance information broad- BY JONAS DINO
tion. cast from the model aircraft. Using the
"The goal is to offer multiple oppor- mathematics they have learned in a se-
tunities to develop math skills through ries of paper-and-pencil classroom ex-
application to real problems," said Greg
Condon, the creator of Smart Skies.
ercises, they try to determine if and when
the airplanes will fly too close to each
In the classroom, Smart Skies begins
with basic problems involving two air-
another. If problems arise, they radio
the student pilots to adjust their speed
planes in paper-and-pencil exercises. As or route. NASA Headquarters has for-
the students improve, they move on to As students improve, they are given mally approved the Ames Manage-
more complex problems involving mul- the task of controlling multiple 'San Fran- ment System (AMS), and has autho-
tiple aircraft and approach speeds and a cisco International Airport' arrivals that rized Ames to implement AMS as its
Web-based simulation. approach from different directions and operational management system.
For the hands-on component of the at different speeds. The student control- AMS is designed to replace ISO
Smart Skies evaluation, students will lers maintain aircraft separation as they 9000 at Ames. It is intended to be
travel to NASA Ames and 'become' air line up flights so they cross over the more responsive to Ames’ unique
traffic controllers, pilots and scientific same location in sequence. needs. The AMS received a glowing
observers as they solve increasingly com- The hands-on simulation is designed
plex math problems related to distance, to add an element of immediacy to prob- review from auditors who visited in
rate and time. The simulation takes place lem solving, and to train students to February. Their review set the stage
in 'Sector 33', modeled after the FAA's quickly analyze problems and make for recent NASA Headquarter ap-
Oakland En Route Center Sector 33, lo- complex decisions and calculations in proval this month.
cated east of Modesto, Calif. That sector their heads Now that Ames is a fully sanc-
controls air traffic approaching the Bay Smart Skies was created at NASA tioned operational mode of the AMS,
area's three international airports from Ames under the sponsorship of the Air- all components of the Center are
the east. space Systems Program as part of its expected to continue to use the AMS
In their role as pilots, students move commitment to NASA's mission to 'in- as part of the every day implemen-
electronically instrumented model air- spire the next generation of explorers' to tation and execution of their duties
craft along a designated route of flight pursue careers in science, technology, and activities.
laid out on the floor. A metronome is engineering and math. The Airspace
Astrogram 9 April 2005
Executive Safety Committee establishes safety goals
The Ames Executive Safety Com- •Increase awareness of stress re- You can help achieve these goals
mittee recently set two new continuous duction techniques (including courses and help yourself and your fellow em-
improvements safety goals for 2005 to offered by the Safety Health and Medi- ployees work more safely by taking the
improve healthy and safety at Ames. cal Services Division). following actions:
The goals were established by a re- • Contributing to the close call/
view of mishaps and close calls in 2004. hazard reporting program, reporting
For example, injuries related to repeti- Ames 2005 Safety Goals any close call or hazard involving an
tive motion continue to account for electrical hazard at http://
nearly half of the lost-time or restricted- Increase awareness of
potential hazards; and q2.arc.nasa.gov/hazardrequest.
duty injuries. Additionally, electrical • Suggesting ways to improve elec-
energy constitutes a potential hazard Improve control of identified trical safety by submitting a safety sug-
that is found in each of our work places. hazards gestion at http://q/qh;
Several close calls involving electrical • Volunteering to participate on an
systems occurred in 2004 that could have electrical safety inspection with your
resulted in serious injury or death. To improve control of identified supervisor;
To increase awareness of potential hazards the Center will: • Attending one of the stress reduc-
hazards, the Center will take these steps: • Improve follow-up on ergonomic tion classes offered at Ames during 2005;
• Clearly communicate injury trends problems previously identified; and
and/or hazard identification trends to • Complete the tracking system for • Completing any required occupa-
employees; required occupational medical exams; tional medicine exams specified by your
• Establish an electrical safety com- and supervisor.
mittee to promote greater awareness of • Involve professional health and Working together to improve safety
electrical hazards; safety staff as consultants to help super- is a cornerstone of the Voluntary Protec-
• Perform quarterly electrical safety visors evaluate safety issues. tion Program.
NASA testing human-robot interactions in Utah desert
Two NASA robots and two geolo- wireless computer network. tools and methods are needed to refine
gists are now simulating an expedition "As you look at NASA's exploration existing technology.
to another planet during a field test ex- vision to return to the moon and go on to This process will bring together the
pected to continue until April 15 in Utah's Mars, human-robotic cooperation will remote science team, mission support,
Southeast Desert, near Hanksville. be vital to achieve that vision," said Eu- the habitat and its crew, robots, com-
gene Tu, deputy director for the Explo- puter networks and astronauts to simu-
ration Technology Directorate at NASA late planetary surface exploration.
Ames. A team that includes about 20 people
"One of our biggest problems is to has placed equipment in and around the
break out of preconceived notions rooted Mars Desert Research Station. Team
in science fiction or existing robotic tech- members are using prototype tools, in-
nology," said Bill Clancey, principal in- cluding a wireless computer network,
vestigator for the Mobile Agent project. the voice-commanded robots and voice-
"By building and testing prototypes, we commanded mission control communi-
can test design concepts." cation services that partly automate the
During the field exercise, the re- role of the kind of communications used
searchers' objective is to develop ways during the Apollo missions to the moon
to enable robots to take the initiative to in the late 1960s and early 1970s.
work together to help a team of astro- Researchers are continuing to con-
nauts. duct a series of human-robot simulated
Scientists and engineers from NASA geology missions to scout new terrain
Ames and NASA Johnson Space Center, during multiple days. These simulations
NASA photo by Bruce Damer Houston, are taking part in the test. Pro- also involve the remote science team.
totype 'Extravehicular Activity (EVA) Scientists are making audio and video
NASA geologist in a simulated astronaut suit Robotic Assistants,' developed at NASA recordings of the activities.
with the robot in the Utah desert. Johnson, will follow geologists and re- Researchers later will evaluate the
spond to voice commands at the Mars data to learn about human-robot inter-
Society's Mars Desert Research Station. actions including voice commands and
During the ongoing 'Mobile Agents According to NASA scientists, hu- work preferences. From analysis of the
Project,' NASA engineers are working man-robotic interactions can best be recordings and other data, investigators
to improve human-robot interactions to improved using in-situ experiments, can assess equipment, software and pro-
help NASA accomplish its Vision for during which people and robots coop- cedures. Scientists can then write new
Space Exploration to return to the moon erate to do research. Scientists plan to requirements and specifications to im-
and venture to Mars. The wheeled ro- examine the interacting constraints of prove human-robot interactions and
bots are attempting to help the astro- landscape, distance, work coordination cooperation.
naut team to maintain connection with a and other factors to suggest what new BY JOHN BLUCK
Astrogram 10 April 2005
NASA Ames Ombuds Office services available
One of the important resources avail- tial channel of communication to raise
able to employees is the Ombuds Office, significant issues and concerns that you
perceive could impact safety, organiza-
tional performance and mission success.
The Ombuds is accountable for con-
ducting informal inquiries, raising is-
sues of concern to appropriate officials,
and redirecting matters not under the
Ombuds's realm to the appropriate of-
fice or organization with an existing ad-
ministrative system; for example, the
Inspector General Office, the Equal Op-
portunity Office, the Ames Union, pro-
curement Ombuds and legal office.
The Ombud’s power rests on their
reputation for fairness, objectivity, tact, Geoffrey Briggs, alternate Ames Ombuds
and respectful concern for the welfare of
all individuals of the NASA community
Jack Boyd, Ames Ombuds and for the well-being of the agency.
Jack Boyd continues to serve as 1. The office telephone number is ext. 4-
Ames Ombuds, and Dr. Geoffrey Briggs 6688 and the fax number is ext. 4-6673.
which is available to Ames’ employee, is the alternate Ames Ombuds. The Ombuds Web site is http://
contractors and students. The office The Ombuds office is located in insideames.arc.nasa.gov/life-
provides a supplemental and confiden- Building 207, Room 107, Mail Stop 207- ombudsoffice.php
Ames’ HACE remembers Cesar Chavez
On March 31, The NASA Ames His- farm and belongings and joined thou- strikes against farm owners. In the spring
panic Advisory Committee for Employ- sands of migrant farmers to work in the of 1966, growers negotiated an agree-
ees (HACE) sponsored several AMES fields in California. ment with the NFWA. This agreement
employees to attend a commemorative In 1942, Chavez quit school after was the first genuine union contract be-
breakfast honoring Cesar Chavez. The graduating the eighth grade (an unusual tween a grower and farm workers in
Mexican Heritage Corporation and hon- occurrence for migrant children) to work U.S. history. Chavez also fasted three
full-time in the fields to help support his separate times (totaling 86 days between
family. Two years later at the age of 17, 1968 and 1988) to dedicate his move-
he joined the U.S. Navy and returned ment of nonviolence, to protest a law
home in 1948 when he married Helen that denied farm workers the right to
Fabela. strike/boycott and to call attention to
Chavez and Helen settled in the East farm workers and their children stricken
Side Barrio of Sal Si Puedes (get out if by pesticides.
you can) and had eight children and On April 23, 1993, Chavez died
eventually 31 grandchildren. peacefully while sleeping at the home of
In 1952, a man named Fred Ross a retired San Luis, Ariz., farm worker.
from the Community Service Organiza- Chavez was conducting UFW work
tion (CSO) asked Chavez to join the while in Arizona. Six days later, thou-
organization to help inform migrant sands of mourners attended and
farm workers of their rights. Chavez marched behind his casket during his
orary co-chairs council member Nora was uneasy about the idea but decided funeral services in Delano.
Campos and Vice Mayor Cindy Chavez to join. Later in 1993, Chavez’s family and
hosted the breakfast for Cesar Chavez in He picked apricots during the day friends established the Cesar E. Chavez
honor of recognizing his life and work. and organized workers in the evening to Foundation. Almost 12 years after his
HACE would like to introduce a brief register to vote. After losing his job as a passing, Chavez’s service to others still
bio about Cesar Chavez. farm worker and working full time at lives. March 31 is now known as Cesar
Born on March 31, 1927, the second the CSO for 10 years, Chavez resigned Chavez Day of Service and Learning
child of six and oldest son of Librado on March 31, 1962 from the CSO and and considered a Holiday in seven states
and Juana Chavez, Cesario Estrada moved his family to Delano where he and dozens of cities and counties
Chavez became noted by Robert F. founded the National Farm Workers As- throughout the Nation.
Kennedy as “one of the heroic figures of sociation (NFWA) which later became ‘Si Se Puede’(it can be done) - Cesario
our time.” in 1968. known as the United Farm Workers of E. Chavez, 1927 - 1993
Chavez grew up in the Arizona America (UFW).
desert near the town of Yuma. At the age Between the years of 1962 and 1993, SUBMITTED BY THE AMES HACE OFFICE
of 10, Chavez’s family had lost their Chavez organized many boycotts and
Astrogram 11 April 2005
NASA Ames celebrates Earth Day 2005
On April 21, the Environmental Ser- of water and 4100 killowatt-hours (kWh) ing facilities. To date, this reuse has
vices Department at NASA Ames hosted of energy. It also eliminates 60 pounds conserved 10 million gallons of potable
its annual Earth Day celebration with an of air-polluting emissions and saves water and similarly reduced wastewa-
informational display at the Mega Bites eight cubic feet of landfill space. In ter discharge, resulting in a $45,000 sav-
Café. ‘Sustainability,’ the concept of addition, Store Stock now provides the ings from 2002 to July 2004.
• The California Department of Fish
and Game lists the burrowing owl and
the western pond turtle as ‘Species of
Special Concern,’ meaning that the spe-
cies’ numbers have declined significantly
and conservation efforts are required,
even though the size of current popula-
tions precludes them from being listed
as an endangered species. Both the bur-
rowing owl and western pond turtle
live on the grounds of NASA Ames.
Their existence is significant because
they are reported as being locally extinct
in the south Bay Area. NASA Ames has
far exceeded the basic legal regulations
for protection by setting aside eighty-
meeting today’s needs without sacrific- option of a recycled-content alternative one acres as burrowing owl habitat. In
ing the ability of future generations to for most of its products. As a result of addition, NASA Ames has also volun-
meet their needs served as this year’s these efforts, nearly 70 percent of items tarily created a program to protect the
Earth Day theme. purchased at Store Stock in 2004 were turtle population during the Navy’s
The concept of sustainability is es- made of recycled content. upcoming clean-up of the Northern
sential in a society unaware of its ineffi- • NASA Ames attempts to lessen Channel Superfund site where the turtles
cient use of raw materials. In order to the impact of the Bay Area’s single larg- live.
preserve the environment, today’s gen- est pollutant source – motor vehicles – NASA Ames has made a commit-
eration must implement practices that by providing employees with electric ment to creating a sustainable work-
continue to nourish economic growth vehicles, golf carts and bicycles for use place – as evident by the numerous en-
while maintaining the integrity of envi- on center rather than gas-powered ve- vironmental programs in place here to-
ronmental resources for the long-term. hicles. NASA Ames further decreases day. These environmental efforts ben-
On a daily basis, NASA Ames fosters air pollution by providing the Ames efit most from the involvement of em-
sustainability in the workplace through shuttle free of charge to all employees ployees. From recycling a single can to
a variety of activities: who choose to ride the train or light rail starting a carpool, all efforts lead to the
• NASA Ames’ beverage container to work. According to the Bay Area Air common goal of a sustainable lifestyle.
recycling program resulted in the recy- Quality Management District, using al- Next time you make a choice, consider
cling of 241 pounds of aluminum and ternative transportation for 10 miles of taking the more sustainable and Earth-
2,320 pounds of plastic last year. Given driving each day, for example, saves friendly alternative!
that the average employee consumes 2.5 0.40 pounds per mile per day or 100.80 To learn more about environmental
beverages per day at work, commercial pounds per year of air pollutants. activities at NASA Ames, visit the Web
programs provide a significant portion • NASA Ames has provided renew- at http://q/qe/
of the domestic recyclable material. In able energy systems for peak demand
2002, 54 billion cans were recycled in the that provide both environmental and
U.S., saving the energy equivalent of 15 economic benefits. Through energy sav-
million barrels of crude oil - America's ing performance contracts and center-
entire gas consumption for one day! funded measures, positive environmen- Environmental, Health
• In 2004, NASA Ames’ employees tal results have been achieved. Overall
collectively recycled 182 tons of paper. building electricity usage at NASA Ames and Safety Forum set
Every ton of paper that is recovered has been reduced by 37 percent since
saves 3.3 cubic yards of landfill space. 1990, resulting in roughly 94,000 mega- Hosted by NASA Ames Environmental
Thanks to commercial recycling pro- watt-hours (MWh) per year saved. This Services Division
grams such as NASA Ames’, recycled is enough energy to power over 14,000
paper fiber now provides almost 37 per- average households in California. As an Topic: Global Environmental Trends
cent of the domestic raw material sup- example of economic benefit from en- and a Blueprint for a More
ply to the paper products industry. ergy efficiency, the use of solar electric Sustainable Future
• Last year, Store Stock began pro- panels on buildings N245 and N235, Presenter: Justine Burt, Manager
viding 100 percent post-consumer re- and the windmill used at NASA Ames’ of Pollution Prevention,
cycled paper as the default item when storm water settling basin have reduced Sustainability and EMS for
an order is placed for copier paper. As the amount of energy purchased and SAIC at NASA Ames
a result, 95 percent of the over 3,000 saved $3,200 per year in utility, opera-
boxes of copier paper purchased from tion and maintenance costs (as of Sep- Date: Thursday, May 5
Store Stock in 2004 were 100 percent tember 2003).
recycled content. According to the U.S. • NASA Ames has implemented a Time: 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m.
Department of Conservation, the use of plan to reuse at least 50 percent of the
20 cases of recycled content paper saves cooling and industrial boiler water Location: Building 221, Room 155
17 trees, 390 gallons of oil, 7000 gallons treated on site from the aerospace test-
Astrogram 12 April 2005
Congratulations to Lockheed Martin for safety award
Lockheed Martin Space Operations cluding machine shop, crane, and fork and employee involvement. When the
at NASA Ames has achieved nearly five truck operations in addition to manag- leaders of a company demonstrate that
and a half years without a loss time ing multiple office and laboratory envi- the health and welfare of their people is
ronments. a company priority, the rest of the orga-
On March nization will follow. It is critical that all
16, Ames Center the members within the organization
Deputy Director align themselves with this core safety
Stan Newberry value.
recognized Some skeptics believe that a com-
Lockheed Martin pany needs luck on their side to have a
for their accom- safe workplace.
plishments when Lockheed Martin believes that work-
he congratulated ing safely has very little to do with luck,
them for winning and a lot to do with being diligent. Ac-
the National cidents are just the tip of the iceberg of
Safety Council's hundreds of close calls and workplace
highest recogni- hazards. When a company is diligent at
tion ‘Safety Lead- identifying and correcting unsafe con-
ership Award.’ ditions and unsafe work practices, they
When asked, establish a key component in building a
“How do you do great safety program.
Ames contractor’s safety success -- Left to right: Ames Deputy Center Director
it?” Their answer Lockheed Martin, along with hun-
is straightfor- dreds of other companies nationwide,
Stan Newberry; Marvin Christensen, Lockheed-Martin site manager; John
ward. OSHA has has demonstrated that the elements of
Livacich, Lockheed-Martin safety manager; and Michael Hulet, assistant
provided a clear VPP work.
chief, Code QH.
path to success. To learn more about OSHA's Vol-
It is found in untary Protection Program go to the
injury or illness. This large and techni- implementing the elements of OSHA's Web at http://www.osha.gov/dcsp/
cally diverse contract supports engineer- Voluntary Protection Program (VPP). It vpp/index.html.
ing, science, and operations support in- all starts with management leadership
South Bay Congressional reps visit with Ames employees
continued from page 5
"Yes, fasten your seat belts. . . . This NASA administrator will understand "This place is the dream works,"
is tough," Eshoo stated. But added that the value of science, rather than focus- stated Honda, speaking of Ames and its
she has confidence in what Ames does ing solely on the financial bottom line. 65-year history of contributions. "This is
and what it represents to our country. "What you need to do is to do good where all the dreams come true."
"You have produced over and over science," she stated. "We do value you At the beginning of the question-
again. You have management that cares and we are going to fight tooth and nail and-answer period, Ames employee Jim
about you," she continued. "Scott …” to make sure the budget proposals Hieronymus commented that the
Hubbard has beaten down doors in the do not impact Ames’ science, she added. Center's direction seems to have shifted
hallways of Congress ..." to rally sup- “This is the beginning, not the end, of "away from basic research" and is mov-
port for Ames, she added. “We are not our engagement” on these issues, she ing in the direction of short-term projects.
afraid of hard work,” Eshoo empha- concluded. In response, Honda said, "We need
sized. The South Bay delegation will Rep. Honda then moved to the po- to constantly keep hammering away [at
seek support for Ames from "both sides dium. "You have a team of three of us," elected officials]. Already the coalitions
of the aisle – we will go out and lasso he told the employees. Honda believes are building,” he said, with members of
[them]," Eshoo said. that the NASA budget should support both parties.
Rep. Lofgren opened her remarks the mission, not vice versa. "The budget- "You've hit the nail on the head"
by stating that "I love you guys." What ing process is a reflection of values," about leaving out basic research, Eshoo
Ames does is important to her person- Honda said. In this instance, he said, added. Industry leaders know that the
ally, to our nation and to our future, she “the budgeting process is backwards" government does much of the basic re-
said. Calling the administration’s bud- for Ames, commenting again on the ef- search in the U.S., she said, which un-
get proposal “very adverse” to science fects of full-cost accounting. "As one derscores the importance of forming al-
and to Ames, Lofgren noted that in her person who flies a lot, I don't want to see liances with corporate leaders. Lofgren
10 years in Congress, only once has the your air traffic management projects noted that cutting funding for basic re-
South Bay delegation met en masse with eliminated," he added. search throughout the government is
California’s senators – and that was to Referring to NASA's administrator doing “immense” damage not only to
discuss the challenges facing Ames. designee, Honda said, "I sense that [Grif- NASA, but to the nation.
Lofgren reiterated that the delega- fin] has an understanding of science…" A man who works in a collaborative
tion has a strategy for garnering support and that he believes “we have a fighting effort in NASA Research Park said, "I'd
inside and outside of Congress. "All of chance” and that “logic, science and like to know what I can do" to help.
us are contacting CEOs, not only to lobby things that” Ames employees under- Honda suggested that a coalition of
the Congress but also to lobby the White stand will have a better reception under young people could send e-mails to the
House and OMB," she said. Lofgren said Griffin than under previous administra- "different offices" of their representa-
the delegation is optimistic that the next tors. continued on page 14
Astrogram 13 April 2005
Events Calendar Ames Diabetics (AAD), 1st & 3rd Weds, 12 noon to
1 p.m., at Ames Mega Bites, Sun room. Support group
a.m., Bldg. 221/Rm 155. URL: http://q.arc.nasa.gov/qe/
events/EHSseries/ POC: Stacy St. Louis at ext. 4-6810.
discusses news affecting diabetics. POC: Bob Mohlenhoff, The Hispanic Advisory Committee for Excellence
Ames Amateur Radio Club, third Thursday of each ext. 4-2523/e-mail at: firstname.lastname@example.org. HACE Mtg, first Thurs of each month in N255 room
month, 12 noon, N-T28 (across from N-255). POC: Ames Federal Employees Union (AFEU) Mtg, third 101C from 11:45 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. POC: Eric Kristich
Michael Wright, KG6BFK, at ext. 4-6262. Wednesday of each month, 12 p.m. to 1 p.m., Bldg. 221, at ext. 4-5137 and Mark Leon at ext. 4-6498.
Ames Ballroom Dance Club. Classes on Tuesdays. Rm 104. Guests welcome. Info at: http://www.afeu.org. Jetstream Toastmasters, Mondays, 12 p.m. to 1
Beginning classes meet at 5:15 p.m. Higher-level class POC: Marianne Mosher, ext. 4-4055. p.m., N-269/Rm.179. POC: Becky Brondos at ext. 4-
meets at 5:50 p.m. Held in Bldg. 944, the Rec. Center. Ames Mac Support Group Mtg, third Tuesday of 1959, email@example.com or Bob Hilton at ext.
POC: Helen Hwang at firstname.lastname@example.org, ext. 4- each month, 11:30 a.m.to 1 p.m., Bldg. N262, Rm 180. 4-1500, email@example.com.
1368. POC: Julie ext. 4-4694 or Tony ext. 4-0340. Nat'l Association of Retired Federal Employees,
Ames Bowling League, Palo Alto Bowl on Tuesday Ames Model Aircraft Club, flying radio-controlled (NARFE). Former and current federal employees. Your
nights. Seeking full-time bowlers and substitutes. aircraft at the north end of Parsons Ave. on weekend only contact with Congress. Join to protect your federal
Questions to sign up: Mike Liu at ext. 4-1132. mornings. POC: Mark Sumich, ext. 4-6193. retirement. Chptr #50 will then meet on the first Fri. of
Ames Child Care Center Board of Directors Mtg, each month at HomeTown Buffet, 2670 El Camino (at
Ames Sailing Club Mtg, second Thursday of each
every other Thursday (check Web site for meeting dates: Kiely), S. Clara, 11 a.m. lunch. POC Earl Keener (408)
month (Feb through Nov), from 11.30 a.m. -1 p.m. in the
http://accc.arc.nasa.gov), 12 noon to 1:30 p.m., N-210, 241-4459 or NARFE 1-800-627-3394.
special events room in the Ames Visitor Center in N-223.
Rm. 205. POC: Cheryl Quinn, ext 4-5793. All are welcome. POC: Jeff Smith, ext. 4-2586. Native American Advisory Committee Mtg,
Ames Contractor Council Mtg, first Wednesday each fourth Tues each month, 12 noon to 1 p.m., Bldg. 19,
Environmental, Health and Safety Information
month, 11 a.m., N-200, Comm. Rm. POC: Linda Rm 1096. POC: Mike Liu at ext. 4-1132.
Forum, first Thursday of each month, 8:30 a.m. to 9:30
McCahon, ext. 4-1891.
South Bay Congressional reps visit Ames employees
continued from page 13
tives and others. Lofgren added, "The attack.” This is about our country and we do?" Eshoo answered, "Recruit, re-
most important people for any member our vision for our country, she added. cruit, recruit." She recommends that
of Congress are those from their dis- Jeff Cuzzi, an Ames space scientist, advocates for Ames send letters outlin-
tricts," so a nationwide effort will be said that funds are being redirected out- ing the “severe damage” that the FY06
most effective. "Any … science/profes- side of the civil service as a result of full- budget proposal for NASA Ames will
sional organizations that would weigh cost accounting. He suggested that it is do not only to Ames, but to the nation.
in on this issue -- basic research – and the important to the country to preserve the "We need people to put pen to paper."
effects it will have on the future of the government science capability as a Lofgren added, "I would ask – are
nation, along with specifics, [would complement to the university and pri- there people who are willing to help
help]," added Eshoo. vate sector capabilities. who know people in the administra-
Another Ames employee said, "It's "What can we do to make people tion? I would not exclude connections
not the budget . . . it's what NASA Head- aware of our capabilities and contribu- people might have on the other side of
quarters [does] with the budget." The tions?" asked Mary Kaiser. Organizing the aisle."
employee continued, "If last year's trends and bringing together teams to support "You don't have a company and cut
continue unrestrained, we are going to Ames in a “loud bipartisan voice" from off R&D," Honda commented near the
lose the very facilities and personnel across the country is key, Eshoo noted. end of the session.
that NASA needs [to complete the Vi- Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Tom The assembled crowd gave the three
sion to go back to the moon and visit Pierson of the non-profit SETI Institute representatives a spontaneous standing
Mars]." in Mountain View, said, "Some of us do ovation.
Speaking about how Congress deals know CEOs. What specifically should BY JOHN BLUCK AND ANN SULLIVAN
with budgets, Eshoo said, "We massage
the policy" and "place the dollars next to
a policy that we think will be better for
our nation and certainly for NASA
Ames.” The key, she said, is introduc-
ing the right language into budget de-
liberations and getting the language ac-
Ask the ‘export expert’
cepted by the majority party in the Con- Question:
gress. Success will only come from a
bipartisan effort, she said. I forgot the URL for the Export insideAmes: Using the ‘Search’ box in
According to Lofgren, "We are here Compliance Office Web site, and I the upper right hand corner of the
trying to put together a coalition that couldn’t seem to find it on inside page, type in a key word or words,
will support good science. We have to Ames. Can you help me find this choose ‘All Ames Sites’ from the drop-
pull in other members from other parts site? down menu below the box and click
of the country and the other side of the on ‘Find.’ If you do not change the
Answer: default search parameters from
Another audience member who said Good news! You can now find insideAmes to ‘All Ames Sites,’ it will
he worked on the effort to build the the Export Compliance Office (and only search the insideAmes Web site
International Space Station noted that, the Protective Services Office and for your key words.
"One of our concerns is that . . . 20 years the International Travel Office) un- Do you have a question for the
of development . . . and $90 billion will der ‘Quick Links’ on the insideAmes Export Expert? Send it care of
be walked away from. We are literally Web site located at http:// firstname.lastname@example.org. And, visit
throwing away a whole generation's insideames.arc.nasa.gov/. the Web at http://jp.arc.nasa.gov/
work," he said, adding that he sees no And, here’s a good tip for search- EC/EC.html.
appreciation of that work by the nation’s ing for an Ames Web site from
leadership. Eshoo agreed that “There is
too long a list of things that are under
Astrogram 14 April 2005
Ames Classifieds Exchange Information
Vacation rental, Bass Lake, 4 mls south of
Yosemite. 3bd/1.5 ba, TV, VCR, MW, frplc, BBQ, priv.
Ads for the next issue should be sent to boat dock. Sleeps 8. $1,050/wk. Call (559) 642-3600
email@example.com and must be resubmitted for Information about products, services and or (650) 390-9668.
each issue. Ads must involve personal needs or items; (no opportunities provided to the employee and contractor
commercial/third-party ads) and will run on a space- community by the Ames Exchange Council. Visit the Big Sur vacation rental, secluded 4bd/2ba house
available basis only. First-time ads are given priority. Ads web site at: http://exchange.arc.nasa.gov in canyon setting. Fully eqpd kitchen. Access to priv.
must include home phone numbers; Ames extensions and beach. Tub in patio gdn. Halfway between Carmel
email addresses will be accepted for carpool and lost and Beyond Galileo N-235 (8 a.m. to 2 p.m.) and Big Sur. $175/night for 2; $225 for 4 and $250
found ads only. Due to the volume of material received, ext. 4-6873 for more, plus $150 cleaning dep. Call (650) 328-
we are unable to verify the accuracy of the statements 4427.
made in the ads. Caveat emptor! Ask about NASA customized gifts for special
Tahoe Donner vacation home, 2 bd/2ba. trees,
deck. Access to pools, spa, golf, horseback riding,
Mega Bites N-235 (6 a.m. to 2 p.m.) $280 wkend,$650 week. Call (408) 739-9134.
Housing ext. 4-5969 Pine Mountain Lake vacation home. Access to
Would like a roommate to share expenses. Nice home, golf, tennis, lake, swimming, horseback riding, walk to
See daily menu at: http://exchange.arc.nasa.gov
less than 5 miles from Ames. Part time/non-smoker beach. Three bedrooms/sleeps 10. $100/night. Call
preferred. Lets talk. Donna (408) 309-8475 (cell). (408) 799-4052 or (831) 623-4054.
Visitor Center Gift Shop N-943
Room in 4bd/2 ba home, excellent, quiet Mtn View (10 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.) ext. 4-5412 Incline Village: Forest Pines, Lake Tahoe condo, 3
area close to Ames. Washer, dryer, microwave, wired for bd/2ba, sleeps 8. Fireplace, TV/VCR/DVD, MW, W/D,
cable modem. Tidy person and nonsmoker. Easy access to NASA logo merchandise, souvenirs, toys, gifts and jacuzzi, sauna, pool. Walk to Lake, close to ski areas.
Ames, H85, 237, & 101. $425 and dep. and share utilities. educational items. Visit Web page for pictures: http://
Avail. May 1. Call (650) 964-1900. www.ACruiseStore.com. $120/night low season,
Tickets, etc...(N-235, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.) $155/night high season (holidays higher) plus $156
ext. 4-6873 cleaning fee and 12% Nevada room tax. Charlie (650)
Check web site for discounts to local attractions,
Ames emergency http://exchange.arc.nasa.gov and click on tickets. Disneyland area vacation rental home, 2 bd/1ba.
Nearing completion completely remodeled w/new
furniture. Sleeps 6 (queen bed, bunk beds, sleeper
announcements NASA Lodge (N-19) 603-7100
Open 7 days a week, 7:00 a.m. to 10 p.m. Rates
sofa). Air hockey and football tables. Introductory
rate $600/wk, once completed rate will be $1000/wk.
from $40 - $50. Security deposit and $100 cleaning fee required. Call
To hear the centerwide status (925) 846-2781.
recording, call (650) 604-9999 for in- Ski Park City Utah, NASA Ski Week XIV, Feb 5 - 12,
formation announcements and emer- Vacation Opportunities 2005. Space limited. E-mail Steve at e-mail
gency instructions for Ames employ- Lake Tahoe-Squaw Valley Townhse, 3bd/2ba, View firstname.lastname@example.org or call (408) 432-0135.
of slopes, close to lifts. Per night: $250, two night
ees. You can also listen to 1700 KHz minimum. Includes linens, cleaning, propane fireplace,
New York, 5th Ave. One fully furnished bedroom
in 24 hour security bldg. overlooking Washington
AM radio for the same information. fully equipped. Call (650) 968-4155, Square Park, $1,000/wk or $3,600/mo. negotiable.
DBMcKellar@aol.com Call (650) 349-0238.
South Lake Tahoe cottage w/wood fireplace, hot Paris/France: Fully furnished studio, 5th Arr, Latin
tub. Rates $50 to $130 per night. Call (650) 967-7659 Quarter, Notre Dame and Ile-St. Louis., $1,400/wk.
or (650) 704-7732. negotiable. Call (650) 349-0238.
NASA-Ames Occupational The Ames Cat Network needs help finding homes for Motorcycle, 1987 Honda Shadow 1100cc, 46K mls,
Illness-Injury Data for Calendar cats trapped at Moffett. They range from feral to $1,000 or B/O. Barry Cunningham at (510) 793-4457.
Year-to-Date 2005 abandoned/lost pets. Tested, altered and inoculated. Call
Very beginner tennis player would like a partner for
Iris at ext. 4-5824 if you or someone you know are
Jan. 1, 2005 – Mar. 31, 2005 interested in fostering or adopting a cat.
lunch-time (11:30 a.m). play on the Moffett courts. If
interested, contact Leticha at (408) 209-5342.
first aid cases 8 3
Protective Services monthly activity
Recordable no A statistical summary of activities Protection Services units for the month
lost-time cases 1 2
of the Protective Services Division's of April 2005 is shown below.
Security/Law Enforcement and Fire
LOST-TIME cases 0 0 Security/Law Enforcement Activity Fire Protection Activity
Lost workdays 0 0
Restricted duty days 0 8
Data above is as of 3/30/05. May
be subject to slight adjustment in the
event of a new case or new inform-
ation regarding an existing case.
Astrogram 15 April 2005
Expedition 9 astronaut inspires Bay Area students at Ames
On April 14, more than 90 students
from San Francisco Bay Area had the Expedition 9
NASA photo by Tom Trower
his recent visit to
Ames from Ames
Center Director G.
opportunity to learn first hand from
Expedition 9 astronaut Michael Fincke,
what it is like to live in space. Students
attending the talk were from Slater
Elementary School and two Bay Area
Explorer Schools, Toyon Elementary NASA photo by Dominic Hart
School and Barnard White Middle
Fincke discussed his six-month
mission on the International Space Sta-
NASA photo by Tom Trower
tion as part of the Expedition 9 crew.
The talk was held at the center’s NASA
Exploration Center. He also spoke to
Ames employees in the afternoon. His
presentation was a compilation of the
highlights of the mission and included
a tour of the ISS and science onboard.
Fincke was selected in 1996 to join
the astronaut corps. Expedition 9 was
launched from Kazakhstan aboard a
Soyuz TMA-4 spacecraft, and docked
with the International Space Station on
April 21, 2004. Lt. Col. Fincke spent
six-months on the station, during which
time he continued ISS science opera-
tions, maintained station systems and
performed four spacewalks.
Astronaut Fincke during the question-and-answer period with visiting students at Ames.
BY JONAS DINO
FIRST CLASS MAIL
POSTAGE & FEES PAID
National Aeronautics and Space Permit No. G-27
Ames Research Center
Moffett Field, CA 94035-1000
Penalty for Private Use
The Ames Astrogram is an official publication of
Ames Research Center, National Aeronautics and
Editor-in-Chief......................... Gregory Gibbs
Managing Editor..........................Ann Sullivan
Editor, Layout and Design...........Astrid Terlep
You can reach the Astrogram Office at:
email@example.com or by phone at
PLEASE RECYCLE (650) 604-3347.
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Astrogram 16 April 2005