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NASA Challenge: Reducing Galactic Cosmic Rays to Enable Long Duration Deep Space Human Exploration

STATUS: Awarded
ACTIVE SOLVERS: 549
POSTED: Nov 12 2014
SOURCE: InnoCentive

NASA is looking for ways to reduce astronauts’ exposure to Galactic Cosmic Rays (GCR) while on long duration deep space missions.  Currently, exposure to GCR limits mission duration to approximately 150 days while a mission to Mars would take 500 days, thus any further meaningful human exploration missions of space depends on finding a solution to this problem.  Indeed, even travelling to Mars requires a solution to this Challenge. 

This is an Ideation Challenge with a guaranteed award for at least one submitted solution.

Challenge ID: 9933637
 
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Challenge Overview

Galactic Cosmic Rays (GCR) permeate the universe and exposure to them is inevitable during space exploration.  Although they are of relatively low intensity they can be very high energy and long duration exposure to GCR will exceed allowable career radiation exposure limits during any meaningful deep space mission.  Protection is needed to allow for safe and successful long duration human missions such as going to Mars.  NASA is seeking to identify key solutions that will protect astronauts from GCR, specifically a way to reduce exposure by at least a factor of four. 

This is an Ideation Challenge, which has the following unique features:

  • There is a guaranteed award.  The awards will be paid to the best submission(s) as solely determined by the Seeker. The total payout will be $12,000, with at least one award being no smaller than $5,000 and no award being smaller than $1,000. 
  • Submission forwarding occurs during the Challenge.  Since submissions will be forwarded to the Seeker throughout the Challenge, please make sure you upload only a finished proposal. You can submit an updated version of your proposal only as a new submission. If you submit an updated version of your proposal, please clearly indicate the new items and/or edits compared to your previous submission. This will allow the Seeker to quickly find the new information and determine how it improves your submission. 
  • The Solvers are not required to transfer exclusive intellectual property rights to the Seeker.  Rather, by submitting a proposal, the Solvers grants to the Seeker a royalty-free, perpetual, and non-exclusive license to use any information included in this proposal.  In addition, by making a submission to this Challenge, Solvers are providing written consent to NASA to publicly disclose their identity if their submission is chosen for an award and they choose to accept the award. 

Submissions to this Challenge must be received by 11:59 PM (US Eastern Time) on 15-Dec-2014.  Late submissions will not be considered.

After the Challenge deadline, the Seeker will complete the review process and make a decision with regards to the Winning Solution(s). All Solvers that submitted a proposal will be notified on the status of their submissions; however, no detailed evaluation of individual submissions will be provided.

 

What is InnoCentive?

InnoCentive is the global innovation marketplace where creative minds solve some of the world's most important problems for cash awards up to $1 million. Commercial, governmental and humanitarian organizations engage with InnoCentive to solve problems that can impact humankind in areas ranging from the environment to medical advancements.

What is an InnoCentive Ideation™ Challenge?

An InnoCentive Ideation™ Challenge is a broad question formulated to obtain access to new ideas, similar to a global brainstorm for producing a breakthrough idea or market survey which may include ideas for a new product line, a new commercial application for a current product, or even a viral marketing idea to recruit new customers. Ideation™ Challenge submissions are typically about two written pages, and Seekers receive a non-exclusive, perpetual license to use all submissions.

In an Ideation™ Challenge, Solvers may:

  • Submit ideas of their own
  • Submit third party information that they have the right to use and further the authority to convey that right and the right to use and develop derivative works to Seekers
  • Submit information considered in the public domain without any limitations on use

Solvers should not reveal any confidential information in their submissions. Often the Ideation™ Challenge will be followed by one or more of the other three Challenge types to further develop the ideas and gain Intellectual Property protection when the concept has been well-defined.

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