September 16, 2009

NASA awards minority university grants

NASA says it has selected six universities serving large numbers of minority and underrepresented students to share nearly $30 million in research grants.

The space agency said the funding will help establish significant, multi-disciplinary scientific, engineering and commercial research centers that can contribute substantially to NASA programs.

The six universities selected are:

-- California State University in Long Beach for the Center for Human Factors in Advanced Aeronautics Technologies.

-- Delaware State University in Dover for establishment of a NASA Optical Sciences Center for Applied Research.

-- North Carolina A&T State University in Greensboro for the Center for Aviation Safety.

-- North Carolina Central University in Durham for the NASA Center for Aerospace Device Research and Education.

-- The University of Texas in Brownsville for the Center for Gravitational Wave Astronomy.

-- The University of Texas in El Paso for the Center for Space Exploration Technology Research.

NASA officials said each university will receive as much as $1 million annually for as long as five years based on performance and availability of funds.

NASA's Office of Education, which funded the awards, said the six institutions were selected from among 35 that submitted proposals.