ASGSB 2003 Annual Meeting Abstracts


NASA LIFE SCIENCES DATA ARCHIVE A TOOL FOR FUTURE SPACE RESEARCH.  D.C. Middleton1, J.A. Havelka11Lockheed Martin Space Life Sciences, Houston, Texas.

   Life sciences experiments conducted in space are scientifically unique, expensive, and difficult or impossible to replicate on Earth.  Therefore, the scientific results of these experiments should be published and shared in a timely manner with the scientific community.   Furthermore, Congress has mandated that NASA improve its sharing of these scientific results.  For these reasons, NASA has built the Life Sciences Data Archive (LSDA), a computerized database of space life sciences research and data.  The database is accessible via the World Wide Web ( and contains information on over 800 experiments conducted since the beginning of the space program to the present International Space Station (ISS).

   The LSDA is supported by several NASA centers across the country, Ames Research Center in California, Kennedy Space Center in Florida, and Johnson Space Center in Texas.  For each experiment, the LSDA contains a detailed description of the experiment and applicable hardware, images, downloadable experiment documents, data collection timetables, and experiment data.

   To be truly useful, an archive cannot merely store data; it should provide a means by which to build future research.  The unique information contained within the LSDA is easily accessible by all researchers and can benefit research implementation on both short-duration and exploration-class missions.  With the ability to see a complete listing of prior research performed by NASA in the LSDA, researchers responding to NASA Research Announcements (NRA) will have a better understanding of research previously performed and thus will be better able to direct their future proposals towards new or more detailed research.  This information can also be used for data mining efforts to evaluate potential countermeasures to the negative effects of microgravity on humans, and to develop improved methods of life support, including the inflight production of food and potable water and the maintenance of clean air.


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