Microgravity Workstations


The microgravity scenario simulates a flight from Kennedy Space Center to the International Space Station. Students learn how live, work and perform research in a microgravity environment.

Biotechnology/ Material Science Workstation. Students will see that there are differences between experiments on earth and in space and they will see how new products and new medicines can be developed because of microgravity. Investigation of virus infections and antiviral drugs is used to illustrate the concepts .

Fluids Physics/ Combustion Science Workstation. Using computer simulation, students will view various experiments to see how fluids and flames react differently in a microgravity environment. Many of the experiments illustrated are based on projects actually done on space shuttle missions.

GPS Workstation. In follow-on lessons from the Aeronautics Scenario, students learn more about the Global Positioning System, its components, how they work, and how they are used. They will also learn about tools scientists and engineers use to control and predict satellite behavior.

Virtual Reality

ISS Virtual Reality Tour Workstation. Students will tour the inside and outside of the International Space Station (ISS) using state-of-the-art virtual reality tools. They will learn about the components of the ISS and how they are used. Simulations are included that show the construction of the ISS.

Living in Microgravity Workstation. Students will learn how astronauts live and function aboard the space shuttle and the ISS. Day-to-day activities such as personal hygiene and compartment cleanliness are described. The also find out that everyday is a bad hair day in microgravity.

Microgravity Demonstrator Workstation. Using a drop tower, camera, and a computer, students observe and analyze short periods of weightlessness as they perform various experiments. The experiments include a demonstration of how various objects fall at the same rate, how an accelerometer behaves, liquid behavior, and flame behavior (instructor-led experiment). Students are also introduced to scientific methods and plot the acceleration rate of the drop tower using an 8 foot ruler. (The Microgravity Demonstrator is an option.)

Microgravity Interactive Workstation. Students will learn the basics of microgravity and why experimentation in the environment is important. They will gather information about the significant microgravity contributions of NASA and NASA/University research centers and learn what happens to the human body in space.

Robotics in Microgravity workstation. Students will learn about robotics, what components make up a robot, and how robots function. They will also learn how robots are used in space and complete assembly of a rover. Follow-on activities for this workstation included additional lessons where students learn to program a robot, perform with a robot, and solve problems with a robot. (The additional lessons are instructor-led.)