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NASA Seeks Non-profit Group to Manage National Laboratory Research
Storing samples in MELFI freezer aboard the International Space Station Storing samples in MELFI freezer aboard the International Space Station. (NASA) NASA is looking for a non-profit group to manage International Space Station research that's being performed in orbit under its designation as an official U.S. National Laboratory. Completed proposals are due April 1, 2011.

NASA plans to sign a cooperative agreement this year with an independent, nonprofit research management organization to stimulate, develop and manage use of the station by a wide pool of U.S. research organizations for all National Laboratory experiments.

NASA will continue to manage its own research aimed at space exploration advances.

As space station assembly is completed this year, NASA and its international partners are transitioning to full use of the unique scientific outpost for research. In an effort to ensure broad access to the orbiting laboratory, Congress designated the station a national laboratory in 2005.

The NASA Authorization Act of 2010, in addition to extending station operations until at least 2020, also directed the agency to establish an organization to manage research performed by other U.S. government agencies, academic institutions and private firms. The organization is designed to stimulate uses of the station as a national laboratory and enhance the U.S. return on this initiative.

The ISS National Laboratory Management Entity Cooperative Agreement Notice is available on the national laboratory website and the NASA Research Opportunities site at:


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For information about the International Space Station National Laboratory, visit:


by Kelly Humphries, NASA Public Affairs
NASA's Johnson Space Center