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NASA Selects New Science Teams for Astrobiology Research
Oct 8, 2014

NASA has awarded five-year grants totaling almost $50 million to seven research teams nationwide to study the origins, evolution, distribution, and future of life in the universe.

"With the Curiosity rover characterizing the potential habitability of Mars, the Kepler mission discovering new planets outside our solar system, and Mars 2020 on the horizon, these research teams will provide the critical interdisciplinary expertise to help interpret data from these missions and future astrobiology-focused missions, " said Jim Green, director, Planetary Science Division, at NASA Headquarters, Washington.

Average funding for each team will be approximately $8 million. The interdisciplinary teams will become members of the NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI), headquartered at NASA’s Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, California.

The selected teams are:

"The intellectual scope of astrobiology is vast, from understanding how our planet went from lifeless to living, to understanding how life has adapted to Earth’s harshest environments, to exploring other worlds with the most advanced technologies to search for signs of life," said Mary Voytek, director, astrobiology program, NASA Headquarters. "The new teams cover that breadth of astrobiology, and by coming together in the NAI, they will make the connections between disciplines and organizations that stimulate fundamental scientific advances."

The seven new teams join five continuing teams at the University of Washington in Seattle; Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge; University of Wisconsin, Madison; University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign; and University of Southern California, Los Angeles. >br />
For more information about the new teams, NAI, and NASA's astrobiology program, visit:

Rachel Hoover
Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif.

NASA Ames Opens Campus Gates, Hosts First Public Open House in 17 Years
Sep 2, 2014

For the first time since 1997, NASA's Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, California, will open its gates and share its world-class space and aeronautics research campus with surrounding communities on Oct. 18, 2014. Starting today, free general admission tickets are available for the event.

The event will feature exhibits highlighting Ames' space missions, a two-mile, self-guided walking tour past facilities including huge wind tunnels and Ames' simulated Martian landscape, opportunities to visit with Ames engineers and scientists, and family-friendly talks with Ames researchers. Participants can learn more about Ames' major contributions to the International Space Station, the Curiosity Mars rover, the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) orbiter, the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA) research aircraft and the planet-hunting Kepler mission, and see demonstrations of technologies invented at Ames in the center's 75-year history.

Tickets with reserved entry times are required. This is a pedestrian-only event; no on-site visitor parking will be permitted. Public transportation is highly encouraged. Buses will shuttle visitors from local public transit stations to Ames. Other transportation options will be posted on the event website.

For more information and to register for the Open House, visit:

For more information about Ames, visit:

Follow Ames on Twitter and Facebook at: and

Sharon Lozano
Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif.

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