The National Aeronautics and Space Administration Langley Research Center (NASA-LaRC) and Fayetteville State University (FSU) will collaborate on advanced materials research relevant to Earth and Space science under a Space Act Agreement.

They will research materials processing, characterization and application, failure analysis, and associated technologies. The object is to gather and synthesize common requirements for establishing a foundation and direction for this technology as it relates to Aeronautics, Earth Science, Planetary Science, Space Technology and Exploration, and other areas of mutual interest.

Primary interests

Specific areas of interest include, but are not limited to, advanced high temperature composites; nanomaterials-synthesis, -processing, -characterization, and –applications for energy generation and radiation detection; as well as simulation modeling and failure analysis.

Specifically, NASA and FSU will: a) Identify experts in the field of nanotechnology, human health, modeling and simulation, information technology and associated technologies to coordinate the synthesis of common areas of interest, and establish a foundation and direction for this technology.

The primary interest is in Earth and Planetary science and space exploration.

According to Dr. Jon Young, Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, “This partnership is a huge step forward and will enrich the academic experience of both the students and faculty involved. It links the STEM outreach program at Fayetteville State University with NASA, building a pipeline of highly qualified aerospace scientists and engineers to meet the present and future needs of government and industries.”

The NASA-FSU agreement follows the successful partnership between FSU and the Brazilian Space Agency on synthesis and characterization of advance materials; the R&D partnership with the US Army Research Laboratory on nanomaterials, synthesis and characterization; and the partnership with Oak Ridge Associated Universities (ORAU) on nanomaterials synthesis for radiation detectors.

It also follows the innovation and research advances made at FSU in the areas of:

  • Silicone gel materials for growing plants in zero gravity of space,
  • Agri-tiling for extreme environments research for growing plants in harsh environments,
  • Highly efficient thermoelectric materials for space power generation,
  • Advanced high temperature composite research propulsion systems and structures,
  • High efficiency radiation and chemical sensors research and development using nano-materials and nano-structures, and
  • Robotics.

FSU has been granted several patents as a result of this research and has filed full and provisional patent applications for other research innovations.