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EMA undergrad team to test spacesuit dust removal through NASA program

A team of 14 engineering mechanics and aeronautics undergraduates will be testing sophisticated dust-removal systems for spacesuits in microgravity, thanks to Microgravity University, a NASA program that enables undergrads to design and test an experiment on a simulated low-gravity flight in Houston, Texas. Led by seniors Julie Mason and Grayson Butler, the team will test the effectiveness of two-and three-phase electrodynamic dust shields to learn which will work best in zero gravity environments. "You don't want to bring the dust back into the spacecraft or space habitat with you,” Mason says. “If you could have the electrodynamic dust shield printed on your space suit, push a button, and it would repel the dust, that would help minimize the amount of dust that makes it inside." The team’s flight dates are in late April.

Mark Riechers