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NASA Ames Research Center

From Academic Kids

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Aerial_View_of_Moffett_Field.jpg
Aerial View of Moffett Field and NASA Ames Research Center.

NASA Ames Research Center (ARC) is a NASA facility located at Moffett Field, California, which spans the borders of the cities of Mountain View and Sunnyvale.

NASA Ames logo

ARC was founded on December 20, 1939 as the second laboratory of the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA), and moved to NASA in 1958. The Sunnyvale site at Moffett Field was selected in October 1939 by the Charles Lindbergh Committee established by an act of the U.S. Congress in August 1939. The Ames Aeronautical Laboratory (now the Ames Research Center) was named after Joseph Ames, the president of Johns Hopkins University.

ARC is active in aeronautical research, life sciences, space science, and technology research, especially information technology, including machine learning and artificial intelligence. The Center houses the world's largest wind tunnel, though this was decommissioned in 2003.

In September of 2003, NASA Ames Research Center took a bold step towards increasing the science output, safety, and effectiveness of NASA's missions through the infusion of new technologies and scientific techniques. A contract valued at more than $330 million was awarded to the University of California (UC) to establish and operate a University Affiliated Research System (UARC). The University of California, Santa Cruz manages the UARC contract.

The UARC breaks down traditional institutional barriers to facilitate collaboration on mission-driven research that is on NASA's critical path, thus providing Ames with additional research capabilities. In particular, the UARC's educational mission will enable students and university researchers to work side-by-side with Ames researchers on mission critical problems to benefit the Agency and the nation.

NASA has suffered some budgetary cuts by the Bush Administration after the Columbia disaster in 2003. Reportedly, these cuts have affected Ames as well.

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