As part of NASA’s largest integrated solutions provider, the Jacobs team at JSC contributes proven experience and innovative solutions to many NASA and commercial space exploration projects and programs. We have created, designed, developed, and tested systems that enable human spaceflight to achieve breakthroughs in our understanding of our Earth, the universe, and of ourselves. Priorities for space exploration may change but Jacobs’ commitment to ensuring NASA advances the scientific and exploratory goals of the nation remains firm.
Since 2005, Jacobs has provided invaluable engineering and science research for the International Space Station (ISS). From the development of the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer to our innovative wireless Extravehicular Activity (EVA) camera, creation of exercise treadmills for astronaut crew health, and delivery of Earth science research imagery, Jacobs has supported NASA’s continuous operation of the only U.S. National Laboratory and exploration testbed in space.Visit NASA for more information
Exercise and astronaut fitness is an important part of a required daily routine for ISS astronauts to prevent bone and muscle loss. The station is equipped with three machines designed to give astronauts a full-body workout: a bicycle, two treadmills, and a weightlifting machine named ARED, which stands for Advanced Resistive Exercise Device. Each machine is specially designed to work in microgravity. Jacobs engineers are tasked with lifecycle management and reliability testing to ensure full-time operation of these critical exercise machines.
The ISS serves as a unique platform for Earth observation science and remote sensing. Jacobs closely coordinates with ISS astronauts to track observation opportunities that have created hundreds of thousands of images of land typography, ocean conditions, along with natural events and oceanic storms in real time
It is estimated that there are 500,000 marble-sized debris objects traveling at very high rates of speed in Earth’s orbit. The potential of a high-speed collision with even small pieces of orbital debris are dangerous to the ISS, other space vehicles and critical global positioning systems and weather satellites. Jacobs’ orbital debris experts monitor the status of current orbital debris risks and support the Debris Assessment Software utility to reflect the most up-to-date understanding of the man-made debris environment in Earth orbit.
Some science experiments on the ISS require specialized refrigeration with temperatures that range from +93 degrees to –150 degrees Celsius. Jacobs provides full lifecycle support and 24/7 remote monitoring of these mission-critical stowage systems and other thermal control systems for the ISS and crew.
In August 2019, NASA astronauts successfully deployed and used a wireless high-definition camera system for the first time during an EVA outside the ISS. Fully designed by Jacobs, the wireless camera system is the first of its kind for the ISS and allows astronauts to capture video of target locations that could identify potential hazards outside the station. The Portable Wireless Camera System may potentially be used for status and safety management during long-duration spacewalks on ISS and the Moon.