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Research Associates

Research Associates of 2003 Academyfrom left to right:

REAR: Graylan Vincent, Julie Litzenberger, Josh Alwood, Mike Hannon, Robert Effinger, Zann Gill, John Keefner MIDDLE: Sam Abrams, Anne Dekas, Naomi Chow, Morgan Perrone, Steve Mitchell FRONT: Vimy (mascot), Doug O’Handley, Crystal Gammon, Kelley Atkinson, Heather Hava, Erin Everett

To view detailed profiles of all 2003 research associates please download the 2003 yearbook (.pdf file). Don’t have the Adobe Acrobat Reader to view .pdf files? Download a free copy here.

Samuel Abrams Samuel Abrams, Tennessee

Sam Abrams is working with David Morrison gathering information about Astrobiology curriculum at universities around the country and designing a new course in this field. He studies Biomedical Engineering at Vanderbilt University.

Joshua Alwood Joshua Alwood, California

Not the typical aerospace engineer, Joshua Alwood pursues biomechanics research during the NASA Ames Astrobiology Academy, working with Nancy Searby on the design of hydrostatic pressure chambers for biochemical and microscopy analysis of bone forming osteoblast cells. Joshua attends Stanford University as a master’s student in Aeronautics and Astronautics.

Kelley Atkinson Kelley Atkinson, Florida

Kelley is an Aerospace Engineering student at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (FL). She is working with Peter Pilewskie on instrument design and measurement of climate data: 1) Design of a self-leveling platform for airborne radiation measurements, and 2) Measurement and analysis of cloud solar spectral radiance using remote sensing of cloud water in all phases.

Naomi Chow Naomi Chow, New Jersey

Naomi worked with Carol Stoker on the design of the Deployment/Retrieval Module for a Mars penetrometer for sample collection on Mars. She studies Aerospace Engineering at Princeton University.

Anne Dekas Anne Dekas, Massachusetts

Anne is working with Dr. Tori Hoehler on the hydrogen cycle of microbial mats, investigating the role of hydrogen-oxidizing bacteria. She studies Earth and Planetary Sciences at Harvard University, focusing on bio-geochemistry; her interests include extremophile biology and the origin of life on earth.

Robert Effinger Robert Effinger, Texas

Robert is working in the Bio-VIS laboratory helping to design electronics for the Ear-Bot project. The Ear-Bot will give robots a sense of balance and the ability to fixate or “gaze” at a certain object while moving.graduated from Texas A&M University with a Mechanical Engineering Major and Mathematics Minor and will start working next year toward his Ph.D. at M.I.T. in Autonomous Robotics at the MIT Artificial Intelligence Laboratory.

Erin Everett Erin Everett, Nova Scotia, Canada

Erin is working with Dr. April Ronca studying the development of quail in altered gravity environments. She graduated in 2003 with a BSc with Honours in Evolutionary Biology from Acadia University in Wolfville, Nova Scotia. She is entering medicine (class of 2007) at the University of Ottawa in Ontario.

Crystal Gammon Crystal Gammon, Missouri

Crystal is working with David Des Marais on her project entitled “The effects of simulated early Earth conditions on the distribution of methanogens in cyanobacterial mats” focusing on the methane cycle. Crystal is studying Earth and Planetary Science at Washington University in St. Louis, where she will be starting her junior year.

Heather Hava Heather Hava, Oregon

Heather worked with Carol Stoker on the design of the Deployment/Retrieval Module for a Mars penetrometer for sample collection on Mars. She is majoring in Mechanical Engineering at Oregon Institute of Technology. She has flown in microgravity on the “Weightless Wonder” in the KC-135 Reduced Gravity Student Flight Opportunities Program.

John Keefner John Keefner, South Dakota

John is working with Friedemann Freund on research on rock fracture studies relevant for earthquake prediction. Growing up in the Black Hills of South Dakota led to his fascination with the fundamental processes in the universe; he’s in Geological Engineering at the South Dakota School of Mines. He’s flown in microgravity on the “Weightless Wonder” in the KC-135 Reduced Gravity Student Flight Opportunities Program and held NASA internships at the University of Minnesota and Johnson Space Center.

Steve Mitchell Steve Mitchell, Maryland

Steve is working with Dr. Ted Roush on the Preparation of a Spectral Library. His research interests include micro-electrical mechanical systems (MEMS) and all things space related. From the University of Maryland, College Park, he enjoys working out, music, and traveling. He plans on graduate school in the near future and a career with NASA upon completion of his degrees. > Web site link

Morgan Perrone Morgan Perrone, New Mexico

Morgan is working with Dr. David Summers on radiolabeling proteins in order to detect them at the lowest limits, which has applications in searching for life on other planets. She is a Geology graduate student at New Mexico State University. She has her undergraduate degree in Biology from Truman State University in Missouri.

Graylan Vincent Graylan Vincent, Washington

Graylan is a University of Washington senior studying Aeronautics & Astronautics and Geological Sciences. He is working with Dr. Nathalie Cabrol and Dr. Edmond Grin looking for evidence of recent water activity on the surface of Mars, and developing a “road map” of Gusev crater for the MER-A rover. > Web site link


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