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How I Spent My Summer, NASA-Style: 'Inspire' Interns Help Design Next-Generation Space Fleet, Conduct Cutting-Edge Research
07.30.08
 
Angela Storey
Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Ala.
256-544-0034
angela.d.storey@nasa.gov

Photo release: 08-095


Jamel Benson > Large (2832 x 4256, 240 ppi)
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Loachapoka, Ala., native Jamel Benson, 17, was one of 18 "INSPIRE" interns this summer at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. INSPIRE -- the Interdisciplinary National Science Project Incorporating Research and Education Experience -- is a new NASA education project created by the Office of Education at NASA Headquarters in Washington. Guided by his NASA mentor, Irene Taylor, manager of the Mission Systems Analysis and Technical Support Department, Benson worked in the Marshall Center's Safety & Mission Assurance Department, analyzing the center's safety procedures and practices and comparing lessons learned at other government agencies, including the U.S. Department of Energy, to improve overall safety across Marshall. Benson, the son of James and Patrice Benson of Loachapoka, will be a senior this fall at Loachapoka High School. The INSPIRE project, which drew some 150 interns to NASA field centers nationwide this summer, encourages high school and college students to pursue careers in the "STEM" fields -- science, technology, engineering and mathematics. (NASA/MSFC)

Yiwei Cheng > Large (4256 x 2832, 240 ppi)
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Huntsville, Ala., native Yiwei Cheng, 16, was one of 18 "INSPIRE" interns this summer at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville. INSPIRE -- the Interdisciplinary National Science Project Incorporating Research and Education Experience -- is a new NASA education project created by the Office of Education at NASA Headquarters in Washington. Guided by her NASA mentor, vehicle systems engineer David Teare, Cheng spent the summer working in the Marshall Center's Vehicle Systems Design and Integration Branch, calculating spacecraft data to assess possible future Mars missions. Cheng, the daughter of Lin Cheng and Ning Lu of Huntsville, will be a senior at Grissom High School in Huntsville, and plans to study engineering in college. The INSPIRE project, which drew some 150 interns to NASA field centers nationwide this summer, encourages high school and college students to pursue careers in the "STEM" fields -- science, technology, engineering and mathematics. (NASA/MSFC)

Brenna Dittmar > Large (4256x 2832, 240 ppi)
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Franklin, Tenn., native Brenna Dittmar, 17, was one of 18 "INSPIRE" interns this summer at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. INSPIRE -- the Interdisciplinary National Science Project Incorporating Research and Education Experience -- is a new NASA education project created by the Office of Education at NASA Headquarters in Washington. Guided by her NASA mentor, electronics engineer Clint Patrick, Dittmar worked this summer in the Marshall Center's Spacecraft and Vehicle Systems Department, designing robotic test platforms to study an innovative, reconfigurable computer chip. Dittmar, the daughter of Edward and Dezarae Dittmar of Franklin, will study chemical engineering this fall as a freshman at Tennessee Technological University in Cookeville. The INSPIRE project, which drew some 150 interns to NASA field centers nationwide this summer, encourages high school and college students to pursue careers in the "STEM" fields -- science, technology, engineering and mathematics. (NASA/MSFC)

Nikhil Goel > Large (4256 x 2832, 240 ppi)
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Huntsville, Ala., native Nikhil Goel, 17, was one of 18 "INSPIRE" interns this summer at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville. INSPIRE -- the Interdisciplinary National Science Project Incorporating Research and Education Experience -- is a new NASA education project created by the Office of Education at NASA Headquarters in Washington. Guided by his NASA mentor, Steve Richardson, integrated assembly lead for the Ares I Upper Stage Project at the Marshall Center, Goel spent the summer working with engineers on the upper stage of the Ares I rocket that will send explorers to the moon and beyond in coming decades. Goel, the son of Brij and Sapna Goel of Huntsville, will be a senior this fall at Grissom High School in Huntsville. He plans to study engineering in college. The INSPIRE project, which drew some 150 interns to NASA field centers nationwide this summer, encourages high school and college students to pursue careers in the "STEM" fields -- science, technology, engineering and mathematics. (NASA/MSFC)

Jesica Holley > Large (4256 x 2832, 240 ppi)
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Huntsville, Ala., native Jesica Holley, 18, was one of 18 "INSPIRE" interns this summer at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville. INSPIRE -- the Interdisciplinary National Science Project Incorporating Research and Education Experience -- is a new NASA education project created by the Office of Education at NASA Headquarters in Washington. Guided by her NASA mentor, engineering team lead David Sharp, Holley interned this summer in the Marshall Center's Spacecraft & Auxiliary Propulsion Systems Branch, where she helped design, build and test a small rocket engine. Holley, the daughter of Ernest and Yvonne Holley of Huntsville, will be a freshman this fall at Tuskegee University in Tuskegee, Ala., where she plans to study aerospace engineering. The INSPIRE project, which drew some 150 interns to NASA field centers nationwide this summer, encourages high school and college students to pursue careers in the "STEM" fields -- science, technology, engineering and mathematics. (NASA/MSFC)

Kelly Love (right) & NASA mentor Melanie Bodiford > Large (4256 x 2832, 240 ppi)
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New Market, Ala., native Kelly Love, 18, right, and her NASA mentor Melanie Bodiford, who leads the Electronics Packaging Team at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, test a circuit board that may one day have to stand up to the punishing environment of space. Love was one of 18 "INSPIRE" interns at the Marshall Center this summer. INSPIRE -- the Interdisciplinary National Science Project Incorporating Research and Education Experience -- is a new NASA education project created by the Office of Education at NASA Headquarters in Washington. Love spent two months working with Bodiford's team, which designs and develops a variety of electronics and electromechanical systems for space applications. Love, the daughter of Vernon and Suzanne Love of New Market, will be a freshman at the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, where she plans to study nuclear and radiological engineering. The INSPIRE project, which drew some 150 interns to NASA field centers nationwide this summer, encourages high school and college students to pursue careers in the "STEM" fields -- science, technology, engineering and mathematics. (NASA/MSFC)

Megan Owen > Large (4256 x 2832, 240 ppi)
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Sioux City, Iowa, native Megan Owen, 18, was one of 18 "INSPIRE" interns this summer at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. INSPIRE -- the Interdisciplinary National Science Project Incorporating Research and Education Experience -- is a new NASA education project created by the Office of Education at NASA Headquarters in Washington. Guided by her NASA mentor, solid propulsion systems engineer Jonathan Jones, Owen interned in Marshall's Ballistic Department, helping troubleshoot engineering design challenges for the Ares I rocket design, the next-generation crew launch vehicle that will send explorers to the moon and beyond in coming decades. Owen, the daughter of Joseph and Ellen Owen of Sioux City, will study aerospace engineering this fall as a freshman at Iowa State University in Ames. The INSPIRE project, which drew some 150 interns to NASA field centers nationwide this summer, encourages high school and college students to pursue careers in the "STEM" fields -- science, technology, engineering and mathematics. (NASA/MSFC)

Alok Patel > Large (4256 x 2832, 240 ppi)
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Sioux City, Iowa, native Alok Patel, 16, was one of 18 "INSPIRE" interns this summer at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. INSPIRE – the Interdisciplinary National Science Project Incorporating Research and Education Experience – is a new NASA education project created by the Office of Education at NASA Headquarters in Washington. Patel was guided this summer by his NASA mentor, engineer Brian Mitchell of the Marshall Center's Lunar Precursor Robotic Program. Patel worked in the program's Education and Public Outreach Office, developing new publicity tools and products to support the program, which is developing robotic and automated lunar missions that will lead to crewed exploration of the moon in the next decade. Patel, the son of Anand and Bharati Patel of Sioux City, will start his senior year at East High School in Sioux City this fall. The INSPIRE project, which drew some 150 interns to NASA field centers nationwide this summer, encourages high school and college students to pursue careers in the "STEM" fields – science, technology, engineering and mathematics. (NASA/MSFC)

Dillon Patel, left, ponders computer modeling data with his NASA mentor, Pravin Aggarwal. > Large (4256 x 2832, 240 ppi)
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Albertville, Ala., native Dillon Patel, left, ponders computer modeling data with his NASA mentor, Pravin Aggarwal, chief of the Structural Design and Analysis Division at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville. Patel, 17, was one of 18 Marshall Center interns this summer participating in a new NASA education project called "INSPIRE" -- the Interdisciplinary National Science Project Incorporating Research and Education Experience. Patel, working in the Marshall Engineering Directorate's Structural Dynamics and Loads Analysis Department, ran computer models to study how heat and other factors affect spacebound hardware and materials. The son of Asha and Dansukh Patel of Albertville, he will be a senior this fall at the Alabama School of Math & Science in Mobile. Created by NASA's Office of Education in Washington, the INSPIRE project encourages high school and college students to pursue careers in the "STEM" fields -- science, technology, engineering and mathematics. This summer it drew some 150 interns to NASA field centers nationwide. (NASA/MSFC)

Collin Plumbley > Large (4256 x 2832, 240 ppi)
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Raymore, Mo., native Collin Plumbley, 18, was one of 18 "INSPIRE" interns this summer at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. INSPIRE -- the Interdisciplinary National Science Project Incorporating Research and Education Experience -- is a new NASA education project created by the Office of Education at NASA Headquarters in Washington. Guided by his NASA mentor, mission operations support engineer Alan Johnston, Plumbley worked this summer in the Marshall Center's Mission Operations Laboratory, designing Web pages and assisting engineers planning future ground, flight and mission operations. Plumbley, the son of Steve and Cathie Plumbley of Raymore, is a 2008 graduate of Raymore-Peculiar High School. He plans to study computer sciences in college. The INSPIRE project, which drew some 150 interns to NASA field centers nationwide this summer, encourages high school and college students to pursue careers in the "STEM" fields -- science, technology, engineering and mathematics. (NASA/MSFC)

Marcus Robertson > Large (4256 x 2832, 240 ppi)
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Empire, Ala., native Marcus Robertson, 17, was one of 18 "INSPIRE" interns this summer at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville. INSPIRE -- the Interdisciplinary National Science Project Incorporating Research and Education Experience -- is a new NASA education project created by the Office of Education at NASA Headquarters in Washington. Guided by his NASA mentor, Paul Dumbacher, a propulsion test engineer for the Marshall Center's test stands, Robertson worked this summer at Test Stand 500, where NASA tests hybrid motors and other advanced propulsion technologies. Robertson, the son of Glenn and Collette Phillips of Empire, will be a senior this fall at Dora High School in Dora, Ala. The INSPIRE project, which drew some 150 interns to NASA field centers nationwide this summer, encourages high school and college students to pursue careers in the "STEM" fields -- science, technology, engineering and mathematics. (NASA/MSFC)

Mark Sepe > Large (2832 x 4064, 240 ppi)
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Cabot, Ark., native Mark Sepe, 17, was one of 18 "INSPIRE" interns this summer at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. INSPIRE -- the Interdisciplinary National Science Project Incorporating Research and Education Experience -- is a new NASA education project created by the Office of Education at NASA Headquarters in Washington. Guided by his NASA mentor, senior materials engineer Andy Finchum, Sepe worked this summer in the Marshall Center's Materials and Processes Laboratory, conducting impact testing on a variety of materials used in space hardware and systems. Sepe, the son of Scot and Jean Sepe of Cabot, will study mechanical engineering this fall as a freshman at Arkansas State University in Beebe. The INSPIRE project, which drew some 150 interns to NASA field centers nationwide this summer, encourages high school and college students to pursue careers in the "STEM" fields -- science, technology, engineering and mathematics. (NASA/MSFC)

Brian Trammell > Large (4256 x 2832, 240 ppi)
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Birmingham, Ala., native Brian Trammell, 17, was one of 18 "INSPIRE" interns this summer at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville. INSPIRE -- the Interdisciplinary National Science Project Incorporating Research and Education Experience -- is a new NASA education project created by the Office of Education at NASA Headquarters in Washington. Guided by his NASA mentor, astrophysicist Mitzi Adams, Trammell worked this summer at the National Space Science and Technology Center in Huntsville, a research facility jointly operated by the Marshall Center and Alabama research universities. He studied solar physics and designed and built a magnetized vacuum chamber to create an aurora -- prismatic bands of light akin to those caused by charged solar particles traveling along Earth's magnetic lines of force. Trammell, the son of Brian and Janet Trammell of Birmingham, will be a senior this fall at the Alabama School of Math & Science in Mobile. The INSPIRE project, which drew some 150 interns to NASA field centers nationwide this summer, encourages high school and college students to pursue careers in the "STEM" fields -- science, technology, engineering and mathematics. (NASA/MSFC)

Gavin Turner > Large (4256 x 2832, 240 ppi)
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Huntsville, Ala., native Gavin Turner, 17, was one of 18 "INSPIRE" interns this summer at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville. INSPIRE -- the Interdisciplinary National Science Project Incorporating Research and Education Experience -- is a new NASA education project created by the Office of Education at NASA Headquarters in Washington. Guided by his NASA mentor, engineering analysis team lead Roosevelt Wright, Turner spent the summer studying virtual technologies and their use in developing spaceflight hardware and systems like those required for NASA's Ares I rocket that will send explorers to the moon and beyond in coming decades. Turner, the son of Lee and Miranda Turner of Huntsville, will be a senior this fall at Lee High School in Huntsville. The INSPIRE project, which drew some 150 interns to NASA field centers nationwide this summer, encourages high school and college students to pursue careers in the "STEM" fields -- science, technology, engineering and mathematics. (NASA/MSFC)

Kristi Lynn Webster > Large (2832 x 4256, 240 ppi)
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Scottsboro, Ala., native Kristi Lynn Webster, 17, was one of 18 "INSPIRE" interns this summer at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville. INSPIRE -- the Interdisciplinary National Science Project Incorporating Research and Education Experience -- is a new NASA education project created by the Office of Education at NASA Headquarters in Washington. Guided by her NASA mentor, Richard Sheller, a technical specialist in advanced space propulsion systems in Marshall's Engineering Directorate, Webster interned this summer in the Spacecraft & Auxiliary Propulsion Systems Branch, where she helped design an environmentally friendly rocket engine. Webster, the daughter of Laura Webster Tanner of Scottsboro, will be a senior this fall at Scottsboro High School. She plans to study astronautical engineering in college. The INSPIRE project, which drew some 150 interns to NASA field centers nationwide this summer, encourages high school and college students to pursue careers in the "STEM" fields -- science, technology, engineering and mathematics. (NASA/MSFC)

Darrell Woodard > Large (4256 x 2832, 240 ppi)
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Huntsville, Ala., native Darrell Woodard, 18, was one of 18 "INSPIRE" interns this summer at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville. INSPIRE -- the Interdisciplinary National Science Project Incorporating Research and Education Experience -- is a new NASA education project created by the Office of Education at NASA Headquarters in Washington. Guided by his NASA mentor, Marshall Center physicist and engineer Trent Griffin, Woodard worked in the Engineering Directorate's Integration and Fabrication Division, analyzing electrical and electronic parts and hardware to help improve durability and lifespan of complex spaceflight systems. Woodard, the son of Darrell and Victoria Woodard of Huntsville, will be a freshman this fall at Jacksonville State University in Jacksonville, Ala., where he plans to study engineering and physics. The INSPIRE project, which drew some 150 interns to NASA field centers nationwide this summer, encourages high school and college students to pursue careers in the "STEM" fields -- science, technology, engineering and mathematics. (NASA/MSFC)


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