New NASA web site features women's contributions to NASA's Microgravity Research Program

March 20, 2000

A new NASA Web site features women who are making history with their contributions to NASA's Microgravity Research Program, managed at the Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala.

Women with diverse expertise, from all parts of the United States and abroad, are profiled on the site. To learn about the exciting and often inspiring accomplishments and lives of these women -- as well as their advice to young women -- go to: http://microgravity.msfc.nasa.gov/WOMEN

Women are helping to forge the relatively new field of microgravity science - the study of many important natural processes in the near-weightless environment of spacecraft orbiting Earth. Women profiled on the Web site play many roles in microgravity research. They range from astronauts who design experiments and conduct them in space -- to scientists who have made ground-breaking discoveries -- to engineers who are designing major facilities for the International Space Station, the first permanent, international space laboratory.

The featured women include Marshall Center Deputy Director Carolyn S. Griner, who helps manage the Center's myriad activities. She started her career with pioneering studies in modeling metals and exploring the best way to conduct a variety of experiments at the same time inside space-based laboratories.

"When I was 15 years old, I witnessed John Glenn's first launch into space from my high school yard in Cocoa Beach, Fla., and I knew where I wanted to apply my love of science and math," said Griner.

Another woman profiled on the site, Dr. Karen McDonald Moore, a biochemist at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, tells young women, "Dream! Your opportunities are unlimited, so reach for the sky in every aspect of your life."

Moore has served as lead scientist for more than 25 biotechnology experiments aboard the Space Shuttle. She is enjoying watching her two daughters launch their science careers as a pediatrician and a veterinarian.

"I can still remember watching Neil Armstrong take his first steps on the Moon, and thinking to myself - wow, someday I'd love to do something with NASA. And here I am," said Dr. Jeanne L. Becker, a medical scientist who does NASA-funded research at the University of South Florida in Tampa. She uses NASA cell culture devices to provide new insights into human breast and ovarian cancer. This program is led by NASA's Biotechnology Cell Science Program at the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas.

Dr. Sandra L. Olson has made discoveries about how flames spread in microgravity, spurring NASA to change fire safety practices on spacecraft. "The best part of my job as a researcher is the thrill of discovering new phenomena unique to microgravity," said Olson, an engineer who works on combustion experiments with NASA's Glenn Research Center in Cleveland, Ohio.

Marshall Center scientist Dr. Sharon Cobb is working on a project that brings people together from several countries designing and building equipment for materials science experiments on the International Space Station. "It is fascinating for me to explore the effects of gravity on the processing of materials we use in our everyday lives," said Cobb.

Cobb and the other women featured on the site work at or with the Marshall Center - NASA's Lead Center for Microgravity Research and Space Product Development. Scientists and engineers at Marshall manage and develop experiments and equipment for materials science and biotechnology research. Marshall also oversees research programs in combustion science and fluid physics at NASA's Glenn Research Center, as well as cell culture and tissue research at the Johnson Space Center and fundamental physics research at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif.
-end-
Note to Editors/News Directors: Interviews with women profiled on the site are available to media representatives by contacting Steve Roy of the Marshall Media Relations Department at (256) 544-0034. For an electronic version of this release, digital images or more information, visit Marshall's News Center on the Web at:

http://www.msfc.nasa.gov/news

NASA/Marshall Space Flight Center News Center

Related Microgravity Articles from Brightsurf:

Human heart in space: What can we learn from mathematical modeling
The research carried out by the Politecnico di Torino shows that space flight ages astronauts' heart.

Amyloid formation in the International Space Station
The collaborative research team of Japan using the International Space Station (ISS) successfully characterized Alzheimer's disease-related amyloid fibril formation under microgravity conditions.

Graphene sets sail in microgravity
ESA-backed researchers demonstrate the laser-propulsion of graphene sails in microgravity.

Long spaceflights affect astronaut brain volume
Extended periods in space have long been known to cause vision problems in astronauts.

Space travel can make the gut leaky
Bacteria, fungi, and viruses can enter our gut through the food we eat.

Cancer research that's out-of-this-world
University of Technology (UTS) researcher Dr. Joshua Chou is looking to replicate the promising results of experiments he has carried out on cancer cells in the zero gravity chamber built by his team in the UTS School of Biomedical Engineering.

Study underscores changes in brain structure, function in long-duration space missions
New study demonstrates for the first time that changes in cognitive performance correlate with changes in brain structure in NASA astronauts following spaceflight.

Microgravity changes brain connectivity
An international team of Russian and Belgian researchers, including scientists from HSE University, has found out that space travel has a significant impact on the brain: they discovered that cosmonauts demonstrate changes in brain connectivity related to perception and movement.

Frozen sperm retains its viability in outer space conditions
Zillionaires like Amazon founder Jeff Bezos who see the 'colonization' of space as an answer to the Earth's ever threatened resources will be reassured to learn that human sperm retains its complete viability within the different gravitational conditions found in outer space.

In vivo data show effects of spaceflight microgravity on stem cells and tissue regeneration
A new review of data from 12 spaceflight experiments and simulated microgravity studies has shown that microgravity does not have a negative effect on stem-like cell-dependent tissue regeneration in newts, but in some tissues regeneration is faster and more robust.

Read More: Microgravity News and Microgravity Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.