2022/2023 Research Opportunities – NASA Engineering Directorate

 

Opportunity ED1:  Tool Development for Post-processing Software License Data Project Overview Dashboard Development Using PowerBI

Description: ED hosted engineering software tools are used across the center by multiple organizations.  New funding models requires cost sharing by each organization using the tools.  License management software can produce lists licenses granted by user but lacks the capability of aggregating that information by organization and total licenses used.  Portfolio of supported projects is currently tracked via spreadsheet with manual updates of key milestones.  Need this tool transitioned to a SharePoint dashboard leveraging project staffing spreadsheets and multiple organizations’ key milestone data via PowerBI

Preferred Degrees: Computer Science, Computer Engineering, Data Science

Skills: Programming (interpreted or compiled language), MS PowerBI, MS SharePoint

Hands-on/Computer Based/Both: Computer Based

Individual or Team: Individual

Technical/Research: Engineering

POCs: Genevieve Dixon; genevieve.d.dixon@nasa.gov; 757-864-7209

Scott Hill; scott.a.hill@nasa.gov; 757-532-0142

 

 

Opportunity ED2:  UAS Prototype Building and Flight Testing

Description: There are several projects in the branch that are building and/or flight testing advanced uncrewed aerial systems (UAS) concepts. The student will assist in the analysis, building, bench testing, and flight testing of the UAS prototypes.

Preferred Degrees: Aerospace Engineering /Mechanical Engineering/Electrical Engineering

Skills: Radio Controlled aircraft , drones, multi-copters, 3-D printing, CAD

Hands-on/Computer Based/Both: Both

Individual or Team: Individual

Engineering/Research/Technician: Engineering

POCs: David North; david.d.north@nasa.gov; 757-771-5367

 

 

Opportunity ED3:  Fabrication Support

Description: Seeking a candidate with a strong desire to participate in the fabrication of unique aerospace composite models and test articles for NASA.  The candidate will gain hands-on experience manufacturing one-of-a-kind aerospace components and test articles in a safe manner while working alongside a mentor.

Preferred Degrees: Mechanical Engineering Technology

Skills: Hands-on, applied skills in building and fabrication of components, models, mock-ups.  Reading drawings and sketches. Use of hand-tools and composite materials such as fiberglass, graphite and resins.  Work with molds and curing composite materials.

Hands-on/Computer Based/Both: Hands-on

Individual or Team: Individual

Engineering/Research/Technician: Technician

POCs: Philip Tofts; philip.j.tofts@nasa.gov; 757-864-5061

Terry Waddell; terry.a.waddell@nasa.gov; 757-864-9784

 

 

 

Opportunity ED4:  Fabrication Support

Description: Seeking a candidate with a strong desire to work in the advanced machining capability and operate equipment to create unique test articles for NASA. The candidate will gain hands-on experience under the direction of a mentor, in the safe operation of machinery, to fabricate one-of-a-kind aerospace components and test article.

Preferred Degrees: Machining Technology; Mechanical Engineering Technology

Skills: Operation of machinery and equipment (ex. drill press mills lathes, numerical control (NC) equipment, etc.), understanding of mechanical drawings and use of hand-tools

Hands-on/Computer Based/Both: Hands-on

Individual or Team: Individual

Engineering/Research/Technician: Technician

POCs: Johnnie West; johnnie.l.west@nasa.gov; 757-864-2261

Alan Scheidegger; alan.scheidegger@nasa.gov; 757-864-1445

 

Opportunity ED5:  Flight Dynamics Simulation and Training Development

Description: The Atmospheric Flight and Entry Systems Branch at NASA Langley Research Center has a long history of modeling and supporting operations of planetary ascent and entry, descent, and landing missions, such as the Space Shuttle, Genesis, Mars Pathfinder, Mars Exploration Rovers, Phoenix, and Mars Science Laboratory. Typically, uncertainty quantification for the trajectories of these vehicles have been done using a flight mechanics simulation tool called Program to Optimize Simulated Trajectories II (POST2). The internship is framed for students with background in aerospace engineering and an interest in modeling and simulation of spacecraft trajectories. The student will be working with their mentors in developing a training infrastructure for new flight dynamics engineer. A stretch goal would be the student learning how to develop flight dynamics simulations themselves and applying the knowledge in development of a POST2 module.

Preferred Degrees: Aerospace Engineer, Mechanical Engineer, Computer Science, Mathematics

Skills: MATLAB, C/C++, Fortran, Linux

Hands-on/Computer Based/Both: Computer Based

Individual or Team: Individual

Engineering/Research/Technician: Engineering

POCs: Soumyo Dutta; soumyo.dutta@nasa.gov

Jacob Fleck; jacob.r.fleck@nasa.gov; 757-864-1265

 

Opportunity ED6:  Continuous Integration/Continuous Distribution System Development (CI/CD) for Entry Descent and Landing

Description: Program to Optimize Simulated Trajectories (POST2) is the main simulation software for Entry Descent and Landing at NASA.  The CI/CD system, which is built on Jenkins, tests and builds distributed versions of POST2 code for release.  These type of systems are becoming a requirement in coding environments.  This internship would allow the candidate to get first-hand knowledge of CI/CD design.  The internship would also allow the intern to get first-hand knowledge of working with High Performance Computing (HPC) cluster systems.  The intern would gain skills in working with scripts which run these types of systems.  This internship deals with scripting languages such as Groovy, Python and bash.  It works with operating systems such as Mac, Windows and Linux.

Preferred Degrees: Computer Science

Skills: Programming

Hands-on/Computer Based/Both: Computer Based

Individual or Team: Individual

Engineering/Research/Technician: Engineering

POCs: Carole Garrison; carole.a.garrison@nasa.gov; 757-784-7354

Will Colson, william.t.colson@nasa.gov; 757-864-1980

 

 

Opportunity ED7:  Management and Automation of Flight Data

Description: GPX2 is a free flying cubesat.  The payload intermittently reports data to the ground.  The student will work with the team to evaluate options for automating processing of the telemetry and providing it in a useful format for the users.

Preferred Degrees: Computer Science or Computer Engineering

Skills:  Development of a software application with C/C++ or Python, Experience with automation of systems

Hands-on/Computer Based/Both: Computer Based

Individual or Team: Individual

Engineering/Research/Technician: Engineering

POCs: David Keck; david.s.keck@nasa.gov; 757-864-7726

Mark Banchy; mark.banchy@nasa.gov; 757-864-2456

 

Opportunity ED8:  Knowledge-based Digital Platform (KbDP) for Urban Air Mobility Subproject

Description: Develop a web-service application to support various user stories of the KbDP for Urban Air Mobility subproject.

Preferred Degrees: Computer Science

Skills:  Javascript, HTML, CSS, Python

Hands-on/Computer Based/Both: Computer Based

Individual or Team: Team – Requires 2 interns

Engineering/Research/Technician: Engineering

POCs: Nipa Phojanamongkolkij; nipa.phojanamongkolkij@nasa.gov; 757-864-6396

Ian Levitt; ian.m.levitt@nasa.gov;

 

Opportunity ED9:  Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) Test Facility Support

Description: Develop, implement, and document a characterization test procedure for the EMC test facility’s radio frequency (RF) power amplifiers.  This test will demonstrate that the existing RF power amplifiers are performing as per the manufacturer’s specifications, including a determination of the 1-dB compression point for each amplifier.  The 1-dB compression point will be used to determine the maximum electric field (E-field) achievable during radiated susceptibility testing within the semi-anechoic test facility.

Preferred Degrees: Electrical Engineering, Electronics Engineering

Skills:  Experience with Excel desired, but not required

Hands-on/Computer Based/Both: Both

Individual or Team: Individual

Engineering/Research/Technician: Engineering

POCs: Courtney Rollins; courntey.h.rollins@nasa.gov; 757-864-7814

Johnny Mau; johnny.c.mau@nasa.gov; 757-864-5339

 

Opportunity ED10:  Contamination Control Test Facility Support

Description: Tribble defines “Contamination is any matter (solid, liquid, gas) that can adversely affect a system”, and as contamination control engineers we ensure limited amounts of this matter gets on space flight hardware during the assembly, test, and launch operations. Our team is looking for an intern with a background in molecular dynamics, physics, chemistry, materials science, optical engineering, chemical engineering, mechanical engineering, or biology to help our team develop new tools for  quantitative and qualitative analysis of contamination present on space flight hardware. Essentially, this discipline allows interns to perform rocket surgery by using multiple methods for sampling on space flight hardware.  Intern will work in a cleanroom environment and a traditional laboratory environment.

Preferred Degrees: Physics, Chemistry, Materials Science, Optical Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, or Biology

Skills:  Scientific method, laboratory safety, research, technical writing

Hands-on/Computer Based/Both: Both

Individual or Team: Individual

Engineering/Research/Technician: Engineering

POCs: Przemyslaw Coleman; przemyslaw.m.coleman@nasa.gov; 757.864.2173

Foyer Sarah; sarah.e.foyer@nasa.gov; 757.864.4855

 

Opportunity ED11:  Systems Modeling (SysML) for Aviation Support in a Wildland Firefighting Demonstration

Description: Build out a system model of an aviation safety management system that incorporates new unpiloted and automated technologies. This will focus on preparations for a first demonstration for a wildfire scenario. The activities may involve attending workshops to capture needs from industry and government, and modeling the connection of needs to suggested specifications, data interface definitions, or functional flows of the safety capabilities.

Preferred Degrees: Aerospace Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Software Engineering/Computer Science, Systems Engineering, Operations Research/Management

Skills:  Teamwork, Excel, modeling connections or behavior e.g. simulink, flowcharts, wiring diagrams. Useful but can learn on the job as needed: model-based systems engineering, SysML, Python/Java, requirements development, functional decomposition

Hands-on/Computer Based/Both: Computer Based

Individual or Team: Individual

Engineering/Research/Technician: Research/Engineering

POCs: Samantha Infeld; samantha.i.infeld@nasa.gov; 757-828-6595

Natasha Neogi; natasha.a.neogi@nasa.gov; 757-864-9509

Hannah Walsh; hannah.s.walsh@nasa.gov; 650-604-4532

 

 

2022/2023 Research Opportunities – NASA Research Directorate

 

Opportunity RD1:  Investigations of Machine Learning for Measurement Science Data Reduction

Description:  Given the exponential increase in the quantity of data acquired from ground test facility measurement and diagnostic systems (in particular imagery data), there is a growing need to increase the speed and efficiency of data reduction processes.  This exploratory project will look at the possibilities for incorporating machine learning (ML) concepts into existing image data reduction pipelines.  As a test case, methods for incorporating ML methods for the processing of such techniques as particle image velocimetry (PIV) and/or particle tracking velocimetry (PTV) will be investigated by the student.

Degree Type:  A.S. in electronics engineering, physics, or mathematics

Skills:  Matlab, C, or Python programming

Individual, Team, or Both:  Individual

Technician or Research Focused:  Research Focused

Hands-on or Computer Based:  Computer Based

Remote Work Possible:  Yes

Number of Students:  1

POCs:  William Humphreys; william.m.humphreys@nasa.gov; 757.864.4601

 

 

 

Opportunity RD2:  Stratford Nozzle Performance

Description: Evaluate Stratford nozzle performance using total pressure probes.

Preferred Majors: AE, ME

Preferred (not required) skills sets (Matlab, CAD, etc.):

Individual/team or both: Individual

Technician or Research focused: Technician

Hands-on/Computer Based or Both: Hands-on

Is this project Remote Work Possible? No

Number of students: 2

POCs: Gregory Jones; Gregory.s.jone@nasa.gov; 757-864-1065

 

Opportunity RD3:  Development of polymer electrolytes for high performance energy storage technologies

 

Description: The project is to develop polymer electrolyte materials for all solid state li-batteries.  The work involves materials processing, characterizations, and data analysis for understanding the interrelationship between material compositions, processing conditions and concerned performance for high performance all solid-state Li-batteries.

Preferred Majors: Chemistry, materials science, mechanical engineering, physics, chemical engineering

Skills sets (Matlab, CAD, etc.): Matlab, CAD and drawing using commercial software.

Individual/team or both: Both

Technician or Research focused: Characterization of polymer electrolyte materials, including using, but not limited to, DSC, XRD, SEM, and electrochemical performance evaluation.

Hands-on/Computer Based or Both: Hands on with basic computer skills (Microsoft office and data management and analysis

Remote Work Possible? No, it is experimental work in labs.

Number of students: 1

POCs: Ji Su; ji.su-1@nasa.gov; 757-864-8074

Yi Lin; yi.lin-1@nasa.gov; 757-864-2219

 

Opportunity RD4:  HiCAM (Hi-Rate Composite Aircraft Manufacturing)

Project Description:  When we plan our next vacation, we want to have lots of options for when to fly and want to get to our destination as fast as possible, hopefully with the least impact on the environment.  The Hi-Rate Composite Aircraft Manufacturing (HiCAM) project is focused on addressing the needs for providing a greater number of commercial aircraft to meet the market needs and to enable integration of more energy efficient aircraft into this industry.  One aspect of this project is the use of thermoplastic composite materials for the manufacturing of aircraft components that have traditionally been built from thermoset composites.  Thermoplastic materials are complex, and the ultimate properties of the composite parts will depend on a number of processing properties.  This internship opportunity will be focused on contributing to the work of the Materials Characterization Team to characterize thermoplastic resins and composites using a variety of thermal, spectroscopic, mechanical, and rheological experimental techniques.  The information collected will provide valuable insight for commercial partners regarding the requisite material properties and processing conditions to fabricate optimized thermoplastic composite components.

Preferred Majors: chemistry, physics, and engineering

Research or Technical: research environment

Hands-on/Compute based or both: both hands-on and computer-based activities

Remote Work Possible: only in-person, on-site activity

Number of Students: 1

POCs: Chris Wohl; c.j.wohl@nasa.gov; 757-864-8074

Rodolfo Ledesma; rodolfo.i.ledsma@nasa.gov; 757-864-6084

 

 

Opportunity RD5:  Composite morphology analysis

Description: Student will be involved in study on morphology analysis (optical microscopy, scanning electron microscopy) of composite, electronic components, battery materials.

Preferred Majors: Engineering, Science, or any STEM related major is fine

Any preferred (not required) skills sets (Matlab, CAD, etc.): No specific skill is not required. Lab experience is preferred but not required. Student will be trained by a mentor.

Individual/team or both: Both

Technician or Research focused: Research focused

Hands-on/Computer Based or Both: Both Hands-on/computer-based task

Remote Work Possible: No. This will be on-site work.

Number of students: 2

POCs: Jin Ho Kang; jin.h.kang@nasa.gov; 757-864-9219

 

Opportunity RD6:  Printing and designing of frequency selective surfaces (FSSs) and lens for antennas

Description:  The intern would help in ink-jet printing frequency selective surfaces, which are resonant arrays of metallic elements, and they would work on 3D printing of lens for antennas.  Both tasks are in support of efforts to develop technologies based on FSS and antennas with lens for structural health monitoring, especially in a non-contact form.

Preferred Majors: Engineering or Physical Sciences major only

Preferred (not required) skills sets (Matlab, CAD, etc.): CAD, Matlab, Labview

Supports of a major NASA project: RVLT

Individual/team or both:  team

Technician or Research focused: Research

Hands-on/Computer Based or Both: both

Remote Work Possible:  No

Number of students: 1

POCs:  Eric Tucker; eric.e.tucker@nasa.gov; 757-864-5205

Cy Wilson; william.c.wilson@nasa.gov; 757-864-7105

 

Opportunity RD7:  Simulation Data Analysis

The Convergent Aeronautics Solutions (CAS) project is conducting trade studies for a hybrid-electric commercial aircraft. This aircraft, known as the Subsonic Single Aft Engine (SUSAN), is expected to carry 180 passengers with an expected entry date in the 2040 timeframe.  The SUSAN airplane has a single fuel-burning engine mounted on the tail and several electric engines mounted on the wings.  One area of research is developing flight displays for the flight crew to monitor the thrust of the airplane.

The internship will involve one or more of the following tasks:

  • Analyzing data taken in a NASA Langley high fidelity flight simulator
  • Developing data collection tools for use in flight tests and flight simulators
  • Learning how Crew Systems designs and executes simulation experiments
  • Participating in flight simulation sessions
  • Researching human factor issues for commercial flight deck displays
  • Developing an electronic flight bag (EFB) prototype for a SUSAN airplane
  • Other project tasks of interest

Preferred Majors:  Aerospace Engineering, Engineering, Computer Science, math or science majors with an interest in aviation.  Willing to learn software development a plus.

 

 

 

 

Individual or team: Individual

Research or Technical: Research focused

Hands-on or Computer based: Hands-on and computer based

Remote work possible: On site preferred but the internship could be tailored for a remote assignment

POCs: Trey Arthur; trey.arthur@nasa.gov; 757-864-6609

 

Opportunity RD8:  Formal Modeling and Analysis of Data Science and Machine Learning Toolkits

Description:  As aerospace systems become increasingly autonomous, a challenge has emerged to ensure machine learning components act as intended beyond any reasonable doubt. This is a challenge because machine learning models are highly complex, and data driven. The complexity of these models ensures that testing, while necessary, will never feasibly provide the level of assurance needed, while the data driven nature of training these models makes understanding and explaining their behavior difficult.

 

This project will focus on development of applying formal methods to the tools, models, and test suites commonly used in the Data Science and Machine Learning communities. The intern will focus on the analysis of the Python Scikit-learn machine learning package, and implementation of parts of this library in an interactive theorem prover for formal verification and analysis.

Preferred Majors: Mathematics, Computer Science

Preferred (not required) skills sets (Matlab, CAD, etc.): Experience in programming (preferably in Python), machine learning, and mathematical proofs

Project supports a major NASA project: System-Wide Safety

Individual/team or both: Both

Technician or Research focused: Research

Hands-on/Computer Based or Both:  Computer based

Remote Work Possible: No

Number of students: 2

POCs: J Tanner Slagel; joseph.t.slagel@nasa.gov; 757-864-2496

Sarah Lehman; sarah.lehman@nasa.gov

 

2022/2023 Research Opportunities – Wallops Flight Facility

Opportunity WFF1:  Sustainability Program Support

Description:  Student will support the Goddard Sustainability Program Manager at both the Greenbelt and Wallops campuses, and possibly HQ NASA. The work includes research, data collection, writing and communication skills, facility and site surveys, natural resources, energy and water conservation, environmental engineering, pollution prevention and recycling strategies, climate change adaptation, and strategic planning. Looking for a student who is interested in sustainability, including energy, civil, or environmental engineering. Projects include benchmarking Goddard sustainable buildings in Portfolio Manager, determine and submit buildings to be Energy Star certified, and complete HQ retro-commissioning fact sheets. The student will also support Envision sustainability certification of the WFF Causeway Bridge Replacement Project which will require the student to become familiar with the Institute For Sustainable Infrastructure (ISI) Envision Program. The student will help the Envision team plan and design a sustainable causeway bridge with minimal environmental impacts during construction, minimal operation and maintenance costs, and resilience to climate change. The student will baseline Goddard’s carbon footprint and develop a methodology to track carbon emissions reductions to meet federal sustainability goals. The projects will develop the students interpersonal and communication skills requiring frequent interaction with NASA engineers, scientists and program managers. The data collected will provide crucial information enabling Goddard’s leadership to determine the Center’s progress towards meeting NASA’s sustainability goals.

 

Preferred Majors: Engineering – Civil; Engineering – Electrical / Electronics / Communications Engineering; Engineering – Environmental/Environmental Health Engineering; Engineering – General; Multi-disciplinary – Natural Sciences; Multi-disciplinary – Science / Technology and Society; Multi-disciplinary – Sustainability Studies; Natural Resources Conservation and Research

Skills: Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Environmental Engineering or Environmental Science

Hands-on/Computer Based/Both: Mostly computer based, but can be both

Individual or Team: Individual

Technical/Research: Technical

POC:  Kelly Busquets; kelly.m.busquets@nasa.gov; 757-824-2041

Opportunity WFF2:  Wallops NEST/WCS Desktop Support Group

Description: Wallops Flight Facility (WFF) is looking for a student intern to:

Work with team members to gain knowledge of IT operations.

Provide troubleshooting for both hardware and software on NASA desktop systems.

  1. Limited interaction with NASA customers to discuss issues, resolutions or troubleshooting steps.
  2. Perform limited technical support to users of personal computers either by telephone, or on-site for PC desktop hardware and software packages.
  3. Deploy systems to new users and assist with their profile set up.
  4. Assist with deploying mobile devices which include data backup and restore.  Also, registering devices with Mobile Device Management (MDM) and installing required apps.
  5. Assist with testing software programs.
  6. Preview of the incident ticket and order management system, ServiceNow.
  7. Deliver computer peripherals and orders purchased via the accessory catalog to end users.

Preferred Majors: Computer Technology/Information Systems Technology

Skills: A+ Certification, Good customer service skills

Hands-on/Computer Based/Both: Both

Individual or Team: Both

Technician/Research: Both

POC: Donna West; donna.p.west@nasa.gov; 757-824-1140

Opportunity WFF3: Environmental Engineer Technician

Description: Wallops Flight Facility (WFF) is looking for a student to perform a variety of tasks as an Environmental Engineer Technician, including research of environmental topics, presenting research results, conducting lab testing and sampling and field work on and around the Wallops main base. Selected candidate will participate in numerous environmental programs, including Air, Environmental Planning, Natural Resources, Regulated Waste, Restoration and Water Programs. The field work will expose the student to summer conditions common to the Delmarva Peninsula; i.e. hazy, hot and humid. A specific project will be developed in an area that matches the candidate’s interests and educational background.

Preferred Majors: Science, physics, civil or environmental engineering, chemistry

Skills: Basic computer skills such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, GIS experience (geographic information systems, including ESRI ArcGIS suite)

Hands-on/Computer Based/Both: Both

Individual or Team: Individual

Technician/Research: Both

POC: Michael Bonsteel; michael.c.bonsteel@nasa.gov;410-422-7955

 

Opportunity WFF4: Air Quality Program Technical Support

Description: Wallops Flight Facility (WFF) is seeking a student to support the Air Quality Program as an Environmental Engineer Technician. Tasks may include field verification and mapping of equipment and processes, performing emissions calculations for current and projected activities, researching regulatory requirements and alternative equipment or process configurations, development of air quality database input criteria and factors, and writing white papers or technical briefs.

Preferred Majors: Science, physics, civil or environmental engineering, chemistry

Skills: Basic computer skills (e.g., Word, Excel, PowerPoint); technical writing skills preferred

Hands-on/Computer Based/Both: Both

Individual or Team: Individual

Technician/Research: Both

POC: Michael Bonsteel; michael.c.bonsteel@nasa.gov; 410-422-7955

 

Opportunity WFF5: Balloon Research & Development Lab (BRDL)

Description: Wallops Flight Facility (WFF) is looking for a student intern to participate in one or more of the following projects:

1. Update the balloon database and present statistical data on technical aspects of balloon construction and launches.

2. Improve the Balloon Program Website and promotional materials with updated graphics and information. This may stretch into improvements on the office presentations as well.

3. Quality assurance testing. Comparing results of current and past data. Student must have dexterity and be very detail oriented in order to successfully prepare samples for testing.

Preferred Majors: Engineering, Physics, Math

Skills: Basic laboratory skills, Basic computer skills such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint

Hands-on/Computer Based/Both: Both

Individual or Team: Both

Technician/Research: Both 

POC: Sarah Roth – sarah.roth@nasa.gov – 757-824-1324