IEEE Nanotechnology Council
Advancing Nanotech for Humanity

NASA MaterialsLAB Workshop and RFI

NASA’s MaterialsLAB workshop will be held in Washington D.C. on January 7-8 of next year. NASA has issued an RFI to solicit input for the workshop and are looking to connect with university researchers and companies who might be interested in using the microgravity environment on ISS to conduct materials research.  The workshop will help us to define what the next generation of materials research on ISS should look like to complement NASA’s future direction. The workshop will include briefings on instruments (microgravity globeboxes, furnaces) available to conduct materials research on ISS as well as breakout sessions on high-priority research topics (nanomaterials, biomaterials, etc.).

RFI Number: NNH13ZTT001L
Release Date: September 30, 2013
Response Date: November 27, 2013

This is a Request for Information (RFI) only and does not constitute a commitment, implied or otherwise, that the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) will take procurement action in this matter. The information gathered will be used by NASA to help prepare for the materialsLABworkshop to be held January 7-8, 2014 in the Washington, D.C., area.

The full RFI and submission instructions can be found at

To respond to this RFI, answers to a series of specific questions must be submitted electronically using the NASA Solicitation and Proposal Integrated Review and Evaluation System (NSPIRES) website. Please refer to section “III. Response Instructions” in the RFI document for submission instructions.


NASA’s microgravity materials science program supports materials research conducted on the International Space Station (ISS). The orbital conditions on the ISS provide an environment where gravity-driven phenomena such as buoyancy-driven fluid flows and sedimentation are nearly negligible. This enables the study of the effect of sedimentation and buoyancy-driven convection on the formation of materials when comparing flight and ground samples. It also allows the study of the often obscured effects of such things as diffusive transport and surface-tension-driven convection on the formation of materials. Measurement of properties such as liquid diffusion coefficients obtained in the absence of gravity-related heat and mass transport is another area of materials-related research enabled by the ISS environment. The current program includes studies of directional solidification of semiconductors and metal alloys, coarsening of two-phase liquid/solid metallic samples, and containerless processing of samples and thermophysical property measurements via electromagnetic levitation. The microgravity materials science program is part of NASA’s Space Life and Physical Sciences Division.

Conference Registration

To register for the materialsLAB Workshop, go to


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