NASA Marshall Space Flight Center

NASA Marshall Space Flight Center

Agency/Department

FLC Region

Security Lab

Yes

Address

Technology Transfer Department
Code ZP30
Huntsville, AL 35812
United States

Laboratory Representative

(P)

256-544-9151

Description

The Marshall Space Flight Center, located in Huntsville, Ala., is one of NASA's largest and most diversified installations. Today, the Marshall Center is contributing its collective expertise, ingenuity and energy as NASA and the nation carry out the Vision for Space Exploration, which seeks to extend human presence across the solar system. Engineers and scientists at the Marshall Center use state-of-the-art equipment and facilities to accomplish NASA's mission. Marshall manages the key propulsion hardware and technologies of the space shuttle, develops the next generation of space transportation and propulsion systems, oversees science and hardware development for the International Space Station, manages projects and direct studies that will help pave the way back to the moon, and handles a variety of associated scientific endeavors to benefit space exploration and improve life here on Earth. The Marshall Center has been a key contributor to numerous significant NASA programs during the Agency's 45-plus-year history - from the 1961 flight of the first U.S. astronaut into space, to the Apollo missions exploring the moon, to development and operation of America's space shuttle fleet, and construction of and scientific discovery on board the space station.

Tech Areas

No Available Technologies for this lab
Funding

The Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research,or EPSCoR,establishes partnerships with government, higher education and industry that are designed to effect lasting improvements in a state's or region's research infrastructure, R&D capacity and hence, its national R&D competitiveness.

The EPSCoR program is directed at those jurisdictions that have not in the past participated equably in competitive aerospace and aerospace-related research activities. Twenty-four states, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Guam currently participate.Fivefederal agencies conduct EPSCoR programs, including NASA.

NASA EPSCoR Jurisdictions and their Directors
View EPSCoR Directors by State/Jurisdiction

The goal of EPSCoR is to provide seed funding that will enable jurisdictions to develop an academic research enterprise directed toward long-term, self-sustaining, nationally-competitive capabilities in aerospace and aerospace-related research.

Agency
NASA
Region
Southeast
Phone: 
256-544-9151
Email: 
terry.taylor@nasa.gov
Lab Representatives
No Programs for this lab
Facilities
Displaying 1 - 10 of 154
18-Ft Vacuum Coating Chamber - 4707
AB Communications Facility, Bldg. 4207
Chemical Cleaning Facility
Component Ablator Facility Mix Room
Component Ablator Facility SLA Spray Preparation Area
Component Ablator Facility SLA Spray Room
Component Painting Facility
Composites Development Facility 4707
Cosmic Ray Emulsion Laboratory 4481
EB Audio Reverberant Facility 4477

Pages

No Equipment for this lab
No publications for this lab
No news for this lab
Success Stories

Rocket launches—or earthquakes—are already punishing experiences. But it turns out there are some things that can make them worse: like if the vibrations hit the structure you’re in at just the right frequency to cause resonance, where the vibrations become self-reinforcing and get bigger and bigger, in some cases up from bearable to all-out disastrous.

But what if you could turn off that resonance with the flip of a switch?

NASA took on the problem when engineers at Marshall Space Flight Center discovered in testing that the Ares I launch vehicle displayed a serious vibration problem that could be potentially hazardous to the crew sitting right above the booster.

Their solution, appropriating the mass of the hydrogen fuel in the second-stage rocket to dampen the vibrations, worked better than they had even imagined. In testing, “they were getting a knock-down on vibrations that was 50 to 100 times more than could be explained,” recalls project manager Rob Berry.

Team members began to realize they hadn’t designed a variation of standard dampers—they’d come up with something fundamentally new. 

When they put their new device in the fuel tank, they expected to dissipate the force of the vibrations into the liquid. But instead, they realized they were actually causing the fluid to act as if it was no longer part of the spacecraft structure, which meant the resonance no longer occurred.

The result, a brand-new, low-cost, lightweight damper, could become the industry standard for buildings, bridges, and many other structures susceptible to vibrating or shaking. New York City-based Thornton Tomasetti markets the technology to make buildings safer against the wind and from earthquakes. The first device to hit the market was installed in a Brooklyn building constructed in 2016.

“This is a clear paradigm shift versus what we’ve been taught,” Berry says. “It’s hard for people to give up a century’s worth of thinking. But we’ve made that century’s worth of thinking obsolete.”