ESC interns in front of NASA Headquarters

From Quantum Optics to Increased Risk Posture: Student Innovations at NASA
November 07, 2018

As the U.S. prepares for human travel to the Moon and beyond and NASA missions venture farther into the universe than ever before, the Space Communications and Navigation (SCaN) program must create new and innovative ways to communicate effectively across vast distances. Students from across the country participate in the SCaN Intern Project (SIP), helping to develop new technologies and concepts to meet these complex challenges.

A student plays with the exhibit touchscreen

Goddard Visitor Center Enters ’Decade of Light’ With New Space Communications and Navigation Exhibit
November 01, 2018

NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center Visitor Center has a brand new, interactive display that shares with visitors fun activities for learning about how NASA missions communicate with Earth. This permanent exhibit, located in Greenbelt, Maryland, hosts four educational panels with visually dynamic screens highlighting space communications technology, including a sneak peek at next-generation technologies.

NEN Now interns working

Interns Create Dynamic Visualization of NASA’s Space-to-Ground Communications Resources
August 20, 2018

For the first time ever, people worldwide can get an inside look into what it takes to enable communications for nearly 40 NASA missions, thanks to a small team of college students.


NASA Meatball

NASA, ATLAS to Mature Portable Space Communications Technology
March 14, 2018

Portable ground antenna stations could transform NASA’s space communications capabilities. With access to undeveloped regions, the mobile systems could bolster the return of spacecraft science, instrument health and other data to Earth.

Tom Williams photo

How Spacecraft Testing Enabled Bone Marrow Research
February 22, 2018

In the 1970s, a NASA employee stepped up to a challenge posed by the National Institutes of Health or NIH: to freeze bone marrow.

TDRS artist concept

Last NASA Communications Satellite of its Kind Joins Fleet
February 15, 2018

NASA has begun operating the last satellite of its kind in the network that provides communications and tracking services to more than 40 NASA missions, including critical, real-time communication with the International Space Station.

South Pole TDRS Relay-2

Life-saving NASA Communications System Turns 20
January 09, 2018

NASA’s Tracking and Data Relay Satellites (TDRS) don’t just enable data from spacecraft to reach Earth – they provide internet and even telemedicine to researchers at the South Pole. The South Pole TDRS Relay (SPTR) system turns 20 years old on Jan. 9, 2018.

Engineers prepare LCRD flight modem 2 for testing

NASA Laser Communications Payload Undergoing Integration and Testing
December 15, 2017

NASA’s Laser Communications Relay Demonstration (LCRD) mission has begun integration and testing at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. The mission will demonstrate how a transition from radio to laser communications will exponentially improve the way we connect with astronauts and spacecraft.

Antarctica selfie

Antarctic Selfie’s Journey to Space via Disruption Tolerant Networking
November 27, 2017

NASA is boosting cyber to space with benefits for Earth. On Nov. 20, 2017, a selfie snapped from the National Science Foundation’s McMurdo Station in Antarctica demonstrated technology that can enable the future interplanetary internet. Called Disruption Tolerant Networking (DTN), the technology is NASA’s solution to reliable interplanetary data transmissions when vast distances or alignments of celestial bodies may disrupt communications.

Alaska antenna

New Antenna in Alaska Expands Spacecraft Communications Capabilities
October 03, 2017

NASA’s newest communications antenna became operational today following a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Alaska Satellite Facility in Fairbanks. The antenna will increase the agency’s communications support to Earth-observing missions.