University of Idaho Presents NASA Space Colonization Research

Thursday, April 26 2012

HOUSTON, Texas – The University of Idaho, in coordination with NASA, is hosting a panel on the research it has done on alternative energy storage capability and how it can be used on Earth and in future space colonization Wednesday, May 2 at the university’s main campus in Moscow.

Joe Law, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering, and a team of four student interns will discuss high-speed flywheel designs that could provide safe, reliable and convenient energy storage for intermittent energy generation technologies, such as solar and wind, from 6-7:30 p.m. PST in the Teaching and Learning Center, room 031. Seating is limited.

Law, with the guidance of NASA Glenn Research Center Technical Monitor Ray Beach, began the second phase of his research last September.

Flywheel energy storage works by accelerating a rotor, or flywheel, to a very high speed and maintaining the energy in the system as rotational energy.

The panel will discuss its advancements in flywheel technology, the future of the project, partnerships created through the grant at the university and the potential terrestrial applications of the research. Interns finishing their senior design project also will present on their contributions to the project.

The University of Idaho is one of five universities nationwide awarded $250,000 through NASA’s Ralph Steckler Space Grant Colonization Research and Technology Development Opportunity Phase II. Grant money is being used for research and technology development activities that support a sustained human presence in space, increase understanding of the moon’s environment and develop basic infrastructure for future space colonies.

Members of the media must reserve their seating by April 27 with either Heather L. Ogletree at or Becky Highfill at

In addition to the Steckler presentation, a representative from NASA Johnson Space Center’s Office of Education will be available after the presentation to answer questions regarding NASA internship opportunities.

For information about NASA and agency programs, visit
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About the University of Idaho
The University of Idaho helps students to succeed and become leaders. Its land-grant mission furthers innovative scholarly and creative research to grow Idaho's economy and serve a statewide community. From its main campus in Moscow, Idaho, to than 70 additional research and academic locations statewide, U-Idaho emphasizes real-world application as part of its student experience. U-Idaho combines the strength of a large university with the intimacy of small learning communities. It is home to the Vandals, and competes in the Western Athletic Conference. Learn more: