Published: May 3, 2018
Ms. Curtis writes:
This school year I have been involved in a program called ExMASS (The EXploration of the Moon and Asteroids by Secondary Students) run by the Center for Lunar Science and Exploration at the Lunar and Planetary Institute. We've done independent research with the guidance of a scientist in the the field. I've supervised two groups. One researched pyroclastic deposits on the Moon that had been found to have unexpectedly high water content and evaluated them as potential landing sites for a human exploration mission. The other researched asteroid spectra in the mid-infrared and compared them to mineral spectra in order to draw some conclusions about asteroid composition in relation to the Solar System's frost line. It's been an great, in-depth, highly student driven research experience that I probably would have been nervous to try to do if it weren't for my previous NITARP experience!
I also continue to work with IASC (The International Astronomical Search Collaboration) in which my students attempt to detect previously undiscovered asteroids. My one year long NITARP experience six years ago continues to motivate me to search for hands-on, high level research that I can do with my students.