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UI Undergraduate Team Receives $200,000 NASA Grant

April 19, 2016

Last November, a team of seven undergraduate students, led by freshmen engineering students Bethany Kersten and Hailey Johnson, submitted a proposal to NASA's Undergraduate Student Instrument Project (USIP) program. On April 6, NASA selected the UI team's project, Training in Advanced Technology and Exploration Research To Optimize Teamwork in Space (TATER TOTS), to receive $200,000 in funding. Through the 18-month project, the students will build and launch three different types of payloads on high-altitude balloons and tethered balloons near Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve in southern Idaho. The flights will take place in conjunction with another NASA project, Field Investigations to Enable Solar System Science and Exploration (FINESSE), that will allow the students to collaborate with NASA researchers while also contributing to the FINESSE team's data needs. 

For questions related to this project, please contact the NASA Idaho Space Grant Consortium located here on the UI campus by emailing isgc@uidaho.eduThe NASA press release on all USIP awards can be found here.

About the University of Idaho

The University of Idaho, home of the Vandals, is Idaho’s land-grant, national research university. From its residential campus in Moscow, U of I serves the state of Idaho through educational centers in Boise, Coeur d’Alene and Idaho Falls, nine research and Extension centers, plus Extension offices in 42 counties. Home to nearly 12,000 students statewide, U of I is a leader in student-centered learning and excels at interdisciplinary research, service to businesses and communities, and in advancing diversity, citizenship and global outreach. U of I competes in the Big Sky Conference. Learn more at