Severe space weather storms can disrupt the power grid, knock out
radio and satellite communications, and threaten spacecraft.
Unfortunately, today's technologies provide only about 30 minutes of advanced
warning before such a storm arrives at Earth from the sun. This
NASA-supported research focuses on developing new advanced artificial intelligence algorithms that will provide much earlier warnings. Armed with this tool, colonies on the moon and Mars will be better able to protect themselves from harmful radiation showers.
Computer security can be dramatically enhanced through the use of
hardware devices that employ physical processes to obtain random
numbers that act as keys for advanced cryptography. This research, in
conjunction with Digital Authentication Technologies, Inc. applies
location-aware physics-based devices to the task of authenticating
Optical Catalysis and Carbon Sequestration
This NSF-funded research program is developing techniques to achieve
catalytic gain in the process of creating long chain hydrocarbons from
methane using optical catalysis. According to the EPA, methane molecules, once released, remain in the
atmosphere from 9 to 15 years. Moreover, methane gas is 5 times more potent a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide, making its removal a top priority. The research seeks to develop the reduction of activation barriers through the use of very finely tuned, narrow band light to excite specific metastable states in methane. If successful, the technology will not only produce cleaner burning fuels, but will also eliminate a dangerous greenhouse gas from the atmosphere.