On our final day for SELF on the Road, we visited NASA Johnson Space Center. We were greeted and hosted by SELF Class of 2015 alumna Olivia Armstrong. At JSC we toured the Neuroscience Laboratory and learned about how NASA studies the effects of microgravity on the inner ear and how they are attempting to train astronauts to acclimate to microgravity more efficiently. In the Anthropometry and Biomechanics Lab, we saw how NASA scans astronauts to design their space suits and how these suits limit mobility. We also were able to talk to a panel of current engineers with one being a KU aerospace graduate from 1988.
The highlight of the visit (for me at least) was seeing the Christopher C. Kraft Jr. Mission Control Center. Here we were able to go into both the original Apollo Mission Control Center and view the current Mission Control Center. At the current center, controllers were working at stations (Flight Director, Ethos, Ops Planner, etc) for the International Space Station. We were able to see live external video from the station (none of the astronauts because they were sleeping) and the path of the ISS over the globe.
At the end of the day, we toured Rocket Park, which houses a Mercury Redstone rocket and a Saturn V.