Statement of Work:
The purpose of this group is to engage and develop the next generation of lunar scientists and engineers, and to enable their successful involvement in current planning for the exploration of the Moon.
Answering A Need:
The decline in lunar funding following the termination of the Apollo program created a gap (both in knowledge and experience) between the recently trained, and those who were the pioneering lunar scientists and engineers. In addition, there exists a gap in communication and collaboration between current lunar scientists and engineers, the filling of which is critical to the development of successful, well-balanced lunar exploration and scientific missions. The need to foster the next generation of lunar scientists is recognized within NASA and called out by the NASA Lunar Science Institute (NLSI). A primary goal of the NLSI is to support “...the development of the lunar science community and training the next generation of lunar science researchers.“ Additionally, the NASA HQ Optimizing Science and Exploration Working Group (OSEWG) is composed of both SMD and ESMD representatives and is tasked with the integration of science and engineering for the successful exploration of the Moon.
We are responding to these objectives within NASA to foster the next generation of lunar scientists and engineers by enabling the development and interaction of these two groups, which is critical for the future success of a NASA lunar program.
The NGLSE group is open to all interested participants who are currently being trained in lunar science and/or engineering in university undergraduate and graduate programs, postdoctoral fellowships, or early career professionals who have recently begun applying their skill sets to problems in lunar science and/or engineering. We identify this target group as the next generation of lunar scientists and engineers.
The focus of this group is to design, encourage, promote, and work to fund experience building and networking activities for, and between, group members. These opportunities will enable the members to become better equipped to contribute to the success of the lunar program, now and in the future if called upon by NASA, academia, industry, or international partners. The group will respond to the needs of the lunar community for input or service, in the form of convening workshops and meetings open to NGLSE members. The NGLSE group will also drive education and public outreach (E/PO) activities for students and the general public in order to continually recruit the next generation of lunar scientists and engineers. Therefore, NGLSE will provide NASA with a next generation work force that is focused on and experienced with the integration of science and engineering as it pertains to lunar exploration.