KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FL. (October 2, 2013) – Today, the Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS), which was selected by NASA in July 2011 to maximize use of the International Space Station (ISS) U.S. National Laboratory, announced a partnership with the Naval Research Lab (NRL) to launch research investigations studying factors that contribute to occurrences of harmful algal bloom (HAB), or red tide.
The Naval Research Laboratory plans to use advanced imaging technology on the (ISS) to develop early (HAB) detection, quantification and classification algorithms. CASIS has awarded $250,000 enabling the principal investigator, Dr. Ruhul Amin of the Naval Research Laboratory, to expand this research.
HABs have become a serious environmental problem affecting coastal areas across the globe. The gradual increase in concentration of harmful algal species in coastal regions worldwide has been identified as the major factor in the escalating recurrences of red tide. The term, red tide, is derived from the ocean water turning red as a result of harmful toxins released in the water from rapid algae growth which is detrimental to humans and marine life. The Hyperspectral Imager of the Coastal Ocean (HICO) housed on the ISS will allow scientists to develop a more reliable process for HAB detection and classifications. HICO is designed for the environmental characterization of the coastal oceans, specifically, ocean color studies which make it the optimal tool for this research.
“CASIS is excited to support the Naval Research Lab, and through this partnership continues to demonstrate its ability to broker research opportunities on the ISS with government organizations as well as private companies.” said CASIS chief operating officer Duane Ratliff. “With today’s announcement, CASIS continues to enhance the scope of spaceflight research and enable groundbreaking innovations for the benefit of humankind.”
CASIS evaluates unsolicited proposals on a regular basis for scientific and economic merit and potential impact. In some instances, CASIS can provide funding to assist highly qualified research to be performed on the ISS U.S. National Laboratory.
For additional information about unsolicited proposals, including instructions on submitting research ideas, please visit: www.issnationallab.org/Opportunities/UnsolicitedProposals.aspx
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About CASIS: The Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS) was selected by NASA in July 2011 to maximize use of the International Space Station (ISS) U.S. National Laboratory through 2020. CASIS is dedicated to supporting and accelerating innovations and new discoveries that will enhance the health and wellbeing of people and our planet. The CASIS goal is to bring the magic of space down to earth. For more information, visit www.issnationallab.org.
About the ISS National Laboratory: In 2005, Congress designated the U.S. portion of the International Space Station as the nation’s newest national laboratory to maximize its use for improving life on Earth, promoting collaboration among diverse users and advancing STEM education. This unique laboratory environment is available for use by other U.S. government agencies and by academic and private institutions, providing access to the permanent microgravity setting, vantage point in low earth orbit and varied environments of space. The ISS National Laboratory Office at NASA’s Johnson Space Center currently facilitates research initiatives on board the station’s National Lab, but management of America’s only in-orbit laboratory is transitioning to the ISS National Lab.
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