• Clark Atlanta University (High Performance Polymers and Composites Center),

  • Fisk University (Center for Photonic Materials and Devices),

  • Florida A&M University (Center for Nonlinear and Nonequilibrium Aeroscience),

  • Hampton University (Center for Optical Physics),

  • Howard University (Center for the Study of Terrestrial and Extraterrestrial Atmospheres),

  • Morehouse School of Medicine (Space Medicine and Life Sciences Research Center),

  • North Carolina A&T State University (Center for Aerospace Research),

  • Prairie View A&M University (Center for Applied Radiation Research),

  • Tennessee State University (Center for Automated Space Science),

  • Tuskegee University (Center for Food and Environmental Systems for Human Exploration of Space),

  • University of New Mexico (Center for Autonomous Control Engineering),

  • University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez (Tropical Center for Earth and Space Studies), and

  • University of Texas at El Paso (Center for Earth and Environmental Studies).

URCs received $4.1 million in FY 1996 and $2.1 million in FY 1997.

3. the Global Learning and Observations To Benefit the Environment (Globe) Program Brings the Experiences of Environmental Research To the K-12 Classroom.

NASA, NOAA, and NSF have teamed up to create an international program, GLOBE, that will encourage environmental scientists and teachers to share the experience of discovery with K-12 students. GLOBE projects are intended to increase the following:

  • Students' scientific understanding of Earth,

  • Their achievements in science and mathematics, and

  • Their environmental awareness.

GLOBE currently enlists students in 1,500 schools to make environmental observations following established research protocols. These students report their data via the Internet/World Wide Web to the GLOBE Student Data Archive where the data are publicly available. An additional 2,000 schools have committed to follow these same protocols and begin similar observations.

GLOBE offers training and online information for teachers who wish to participate in the program. It also maintains an online forum where students from all over the world can discuss environmental observations and issues.31

2.8 SUMMARY COMMENTS

These notable examples of the contributions of the R&DA programs help explain why the programs are important to the nation, to science, to the advancement of technology, and to education. Recognizing the difficulty in communicating the value of R&DA to those both inside and outside NASA, the task group chose what it considered to be successful examples of R&DA. It believes that this is one of the first summaries of the accomplishments of NASA's R&DA programs.

31  

 For further reading, see "GLOBE: A Worldwide Environmental Science and Education Partnership," Journal of Science Education and Technology, Vol. 7, No. 1, 1998; information is also available on the GLOBE Web site at <http://www.globe.gov>.



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