Science at NASA


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2011 American Astronautical Society Robert H. Goddard Memorial Symposium--Nicholas White, NASA

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Science at NASA

  1. 1. Science at NASA<br />Dr Nicholas E. White<br />Director, Sciences and Exploration Directorate <br />NASA GSFC<br />Presentation includes charts from<br />Dr WaleedAbdalati<br />NASA Chief Scientist <br />
  2. 2. Answering Questions Rooted at the Very Core of the Human Spirit<br />How and why are Earth’s climate and the environment changing?<br />How and why does the Sun vary and affect Earth and the rest of the solar system?<br />How do planets and life originate?<br />How does the universe work, and what are its origin and destiny?<br />Are we alone?<br />
  3. 3. FY 12 NASA Programmatic Budget<br />
  4. 4. Peering at the Edges of the Universe and the beginning of time<br />
  5. 5. Exploring Our Neighbors in the Solar System<br />
  6. 6. Examining the Sun that Fuels Us<br />
  7. 7. Understanding The Planet We Live on Today<br />
  8. 8. Understanding<br />the Planet that our <br />Descendants will Live on Tomorrow<br />
  9. 9. Investigating Biological and Physical Processes in the Space Environment<br />
  10. 10. NASA Organizational Chart<br />OCS<br />Office of the Administrator<br />OCT<br />SMD<br />ARMD<br />ESMD<br />Centers<br />S0MD<br />
  11. 11. OCS Key Functions<br />Advise the NASA Administrator on Scientific Matters<br />Independent voice<br />Unburdened by direct implementation concerns<br />Provide representation of NASA science interests to highest level of NASA management<br />Serve as a key point of contact for scientific matters at NASA<br />In particular those that span directorates, centers, other agencies, etc.<br />Foster interaction across directorates and centers and with the external community<br />Facilitate international and interagency collaborations<br />
  12. 12. Overarching Goals<br />Maximize the Science Return of this Agency on taxpayer investments<br />Merit<br />Value<br />Integrity of processes<br />Achieve instant recognition of NASA as a science agency among public, sponsors, and stakeholders.<br />
  13. 13. Agency Chief Scientist Thoughts<br />The establishment of the Office of the Chief Scientist is a clear indication of the Administrator’s interest in and commitment to science at NASA.  <br />It is very easy to focus on what we can’t do in these times of challenging budgets, but it is important that we step back and consider the incredible things we can do and are doing. <br />With all the missions coming up this year, next, and beyond, this is a great time to be involved in science at NASA.<br />Partnerships will be an essential element of our success. <br />Productive interactions among the chief scientists office, SMD, the Office of the Chief Technologist and the Office of the Chief Engineer are critical to maximizing our technological and scientific success. <br />
  14. 14. Challenges to the 3 Chiefs<br />Flat budget environment means we need to do more for less<br />Can technology investments play a role?<br />Can we reduce the oversight burden?<br />Launch costs are going up: reduces science content!<br />How do we reverse this?<br />JWST and MSL budget overruns have made it challenging to make the case for new flagships<br />Can we change the paradigm? <br />Failure to align international partnership process for larger science mission with ESA in Astrophysics and Planetary (Dark Energy, EJSM, IXO, LISA)<br />How do we jointly prioritize?<br />The current uncertainties in the human space flight (HSF) program begs the question: <br />What future role can HSF play in enabling the science program?<br />
  15. 15. Science to Inspire… …Science To Serve<br />
  16. 16. HST was a spectacular success in terms of human spaceflight enabling science <br />
  17. 17. NASA Earth and Space Science from ISS finally starting to happen<br />
  18. 18. For the future Mars is a common goal<br />What future role can HSF play in enabling the science program?<br />