Learn about our lab

Welcome to the Interplanetary Initiative Lab: a community center for space hardware and software development.

Lab features

Clean Room

The cleanroom is equipped with an air filtration system to ensure the air inside is free of dust and other contaminants. The clean, temperature- and humidity- controlled air ensures a safe environment for the space-bound hardware that is integrated and tested inside the room.

Thermal Vacuum Chamber (TVAC)

The thermal vacuum chamber (TVAC) is used to test spacecraft and their components in a simulated space environment. The chamber can remove the enclosed air to create a vacuum similar to that found in space. The chamber also uses liquid nitrogen to control its temperature to simulate the extreme hot and cold conditions that space-bound hardware will face in operation.

Ground Station

The ground station computer is used by spacecraft operators to monitor and control satellites orbiting our planet. The computer sends a signal that is transmitted to orbiting satellites via antennas mounted on the rooftop.


Rapid prototyping is fundamental in projects for both Earth and space- bound projects. The 3D printers in the lab allow users to print 3 dimensional objects out of plastic to prototype and test new mechanisms and structures.

Electronics work stations

The electronic workstations contain the machines needed to build and test electronics for any project. These stations include state- of- the- art electronic test tools such as multimeters, spectrum analyzers, power supplies, and oscilloscopes. Equipment to build and fix electronics is also available: rework stations, soldering stations, and reflow ovens.

Fume hood

The fume hood protects lab users from potentially harmful fumes liberated by the application of adhesives, coatings, and other processes. The fume hood also contains a fire-rated cabinet for storage of hazardous materials to ensure a safe working environment.

Mechanical tools

  • The Interplanetary Lab is equipped with a wide array of mechanical tools and equipment utilized for prototyping and fabrication of any project, from rovers to weather stations. Rooftop access
  • A rooftop deck with safety railing is easily accessible from the Interplanetary Lab. This space hosts the ground station antennas used to communicate with spacecraft orbiting our planet, and offers space for  any project or experiment that requires a view of the sky.

Collaborative workspace

A collaborative work space where project ideation takes place. This lounge contains audiovisual meeting equipment and a small kitchen.

There are plenty of lockers available for temporary storage of project materials and tools. Lab users can leverage this storage space to avoid having to carry these items every time they use the lab.

Photo gallery

The Lab team is a diverse group of highly qualified ASU makers and innovators dedicated to forging long-term collaborations with external partners.

Lab staff

Danny Jacobs
Lab Lead

Lindy Elkins-Tanton
Managing Director 

Matthew Adkins 
Student Lab Associate 

Chandler Hutchens 
Student Lab Associate 

Christopher McCormick
Student Lab Associate  

Amisha Patel 
Student Lab Associate 

Pawan Vijayanagar
Student Lab Associate


Tempe Campus
Sun Devil Hall
Main Entrance: Palm Walk
Delivery Entrance: Southwest corner (by arrangement or inquire at main entrance) 

Get involved

Want to get involved with a project or connect with our Lab team? Fill out this form to get connected! 

Lab connection