eXploration Habitat (X-Hab) Academic Innovation Challenge 2012

eXploration Habitat (X-Hab) Academic Innovation Challenge LogoThe eXploration Habitat (X-Hab) 2012 Academic Innovation Challenge is a university level challenge designed to engage and retain students in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). The competition is intended to link with senior and graduate-level design curricula that emphasize hands-on design, research, development, and manufacture of functional prototypical subsystems that enable habitation-related functionality for space exploration missions. NASA will directly benefit from the challenge by sponsoring the development of innovative habitation-related concepts and technologies from universities, which will result in innovative ideas and solutions that could be applied to exploration habitats. The Habitat Demonstration Unit (HDU) project will offer multiple X-Hab awards of $5K - $45K each to design and produce functional products of interest to the HDU project as proposed by university teams according to their interests and expertise. The prototypes produced by the university teams will be integrated onto an existing NASA built operational habitat prototype. X-Hab proposals will have a Notice of Intent and proposal phase, where down-selection will determine which projects will be funded. X-Hab university teams will deliver their products in May-June 2012 to be integrated in the FY12 HDU habitat configuration. Universities may collaborate together on a Project Team.

The Foundation anticipates that approximately 6-8 awards will be made under this solicitation. Individual awards may not exceed the maximum specified in the topic details “Anticipated Proposal Budget Request” for the selected topic


Proposals will be accepted from faculty who are U.S. citizens and currently teach an Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) accredited engineering senior or graduate design, industrial design, or architecture curriculum teaming course at a university affiliated with the National Space Grant College (if applicable) and Fellowship Program, or other US accredited university. Multi-discipline, multi-departmental, and/or multi-institutional teaming collaborations are highly encouraged.

Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Tribal Colleges and other minority serving educational institutions are particularly encouraged to apply. Proposals from women, members of underrepresented minorities groups, and persons with disabilities are highly encouraged.

Proposal Information

  • eXploration Habitat (X-Hab) Academic Innovation Challenge Solicitation
  • Important Dates
    • March 14, 2011 - Date of Announcement / Release of RFP
    • March 29, 2011 Questions for TIM #1 Due
    • April 1, 2011 Notice of Intent Due
    • April 5, 2011 Technical Interchange Meeting Telecon #1
    • April 12, 2011 Questions for TIM #2 Due
    • April 19, 2011 Technical Interchange Meeting Telecon #2
    • May 6, 2011 Proposal Due Date
    • May 23, 2011 Award Announcements

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