Plans for lunar missions had been in the works for years even before John F. Kennedy committed the nation to “landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to Earth” in May 1961. One of the main questions was just how to do it with the technology available.
If you want to make the long voyage to Mars, you first have to train and rehearse, and MIT alumnus Barret Schlegelmilch SM ’18, MBA ’18 is doing just that. He recently commanded a 45-day practice mission living and working with three other would-be astronauts in a cramped simulated spaceship.
MIT researchers have developed a trajectory-planning model that helps drones fly more safely at high speeds through previously unexplored areas, which could aid search-and-rescue missions through dense forests.
Both Manyapu and Dopart, a human factors systems engineer, have logged countless hours developing Boeing’s CST-100 Starliner, in collaboration with NASA’s Commercial Crew Program. The spacecraft will be used to access low Earth orbit and travel to the International Space Station.
David Mindell has spent his career defying traditional distinctions between disciplines. His work has explored the ways humans interact with machines, drive innovation, and maintain societal well-being as technology transforms our economy.
Researchers are already expanding beyond traditional applications of computer science and using these techniques to advance a range of scientific fields, from cancer medicine to anthropology to design — and to the discovery of new planets. Computation has already proven useful for the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS), a NASA-funded mission led by MIT.