Specific MISSE-X objectives include:
•To advance the technology readiness level (TRL) of new
spacecraft materials and devices critical to future space
•To conduct experiments that measure performance, reliability,
and durability of materials and devices (Figure 3 provides
pre- and post-flight images of the Polymer Erosion and Contamination
Experiment [PEACE] flown on MISSE 2).
• To implement new, customer-driven capabilities such as
expanded active accommodations and near real-time experiment monitoring
including daily photographing.
•To develop a plug-and-play mechanical and avionics system
that reduces the cost and time required to fly experiments,
while reducing return mass to ~10% of the launch mass.
•To develop accurate models to correlate ground- and space-based
data, and to scale LEO results with other space environments.
• To foster interest in STEM in primary and secondary schools
through student collaboration and participation.
These objectives directly support the larger goal of maturing
the transformative technologies required to meet NASA's Grand Challenges
as outlined by the NASA OCT, including advancement of spacecraft safety
and reliability, and establishing conditions for permanent human presence
in space. Success in meeting these challenges, and others as well,
will rely in part on the proper operation and endurance of the many
materials and devices comprising our future vehicles, habitats, and
tools. As the ISS moves from the assembly phase into full-scale operation
as a resource for experimentation, MISSE-X presents an ideal opportunity
to make this resource more accessible and affordable to the space