How can we better prepare the STEM Workforce to meet the challenges of exploring and living off-planet?

Space Works provides the opportunities for students to apply their discipline knowledge through team-based, real-world challenges tied to the NASA and Industry needs.

Project Goals

Students will participate in project-based learning mentored by current mission scientists and engineers that will give them workforce-relevant understanding and practice in:

1. Project design and fabrication - including the application of SolidWorks, training and use of the ASU Student Machine Shop, and the implementation of a project from prototype through completion within a dedicated team project space;

2. Analytical modeling and its application to planetary exploration;

3. Space mission design and implementation; and

4. Leadership training, including project organization, schedules, budgets, professional reviews and proposal writing.


Students test their conceptual payloads through thermal and structural modeling.

Student teams work on mission concepts and refine their prototypes through building and testing.

SpaceWorks Update

Our Space Works - Level 2 classroom is now ready for student projects to begin! 40 undergraduate scientists and engineers will begin building their projects that will be tested in the Christensen Instrument Group's thermal vacuum chamber to simulate conditions in space.

Students will be undergoing training in cleanroom protocols and electrostatic discharge training to learn proper practices when assembling and testing their projects.

SpaceWorks Lab Area
SpaceWorks Lab Area
SpaceWorks Study Area
SpaceWorks Study Area
Students working in SpaceWorks Lab

Student working in SpaceWorks Lab


Key Accomplishments

Space Works now has 4 levels of courses that are enabling students to "level-up" in their applied skill capabilities and knowledge of the practices, protocols, and procedures needed to become the talent pipeline that will enable humanity to become a multi-planet species. Space Works courses have been cross-listed with ASU's Fulton College of Engineering which reflects the rigor and technical excellence that is being taught.


Sheri Klug Boonstra - PI, School of Earth and Space Exploration, ASU

Dann Garcia - Deputy PI, ASU School of Earth and Space Exploration

Antonio Acuna - Engineer, ASU School of Earth and Space Exploration

Don Doerres - Engineer, ASU School of Earth and Space Exploration

Leann Scott - Graduate Engineering Student, ASU School of Earth and Space Exploration

Space Works students working in ASU lab