PISCES interns present aerospace research

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The Pacific International Space Center for Exploration Systems recently highlighted the research done by interns about a pivotal project involving a mock lunar mission at a planetary analog test site on Hawaii Island.

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The Pacific International Space Center for Exploration Systems recently highlighted the research done by interns about a pivotal project involving a mock lunar mission at a planetary analog test site on Hawaii Island.

During an hourlong multimedia presentation Sept. 29, University of Hawaii at Hilo interns Kyla Defore and Ashley Garnett presented their final research for the Hilo-based aerospace organization PISCES. County, state and University of Hawaii officials observed their work involving the remote operation of the PISCES planetary rover from a mission control center in Hilo, navigating rocky, lunar-like terrain and gathering environmental data.

The interns also researched and characterized landscapes on Hawaii Island that are geologically similar to those found on Mars and the moon. Their findings could support future In-Situ Resource Utilization space missions, yielding resources such as water and rocket fuel on other celestial bodies. In addition, the two interns supported the 2016 STARS (STEM Aerospace Research Scholars) workshop for high school women by leading engineering activities for a group of eight students interested in science- and aerospace-related careers.

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“Summer interns play a critical role in PISCES projects and this year was no exception,” said PISCES program manager Rodrigo Romo. “The two intern teams we had working with us in planetary geology and robotics clearly displayed the high quality of students that the Hawaii education system produces.”

For more information about PISCES or to view the interns’ presentation, visit www.pacificspacecenter.com.

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