NASA Mission Control interviewed Professor Mark Weislogel about the Capillary Flow Experiments-2 that Weislogel and his students have been conducting on the International Space Station (ISS) from their lab at PSU's Maseeh College of Engineering and Computer Science.
In the NASA interview, Weislogel, a mechanical and materials engineering professor, explains the Capillary Flow Experiments-2 and applications for their research findings in both space and on Earth. The experiments, which are directed by Weislogel and his team at PSU and run by astronauts on the ISS, study the effects of liquids in various shaped containers under zero gravity conditions.
Capillary flow research findings contribute to designing better spacecraft systems and processes. Weislogel discusses how he and his team have also found that some of the rules and design tools they are developing for space applications can be applied to ground us. For example, Weislogel and his students have applied capillary flow methods to “lab-on-a-chip” technologies that concern extremely small volumes of liquids on small chips, such as medical blood samples on slides.
Becoming an astronaut is a privilege reserved for a select few, but in the interview Weislogel also discusses how students can engage in space research by connecting with faculty like him who welcome motivated students to join their research teams. Though NASA does not have a facility in Oregon, Weislogel’s students at PSU collaborate closely with NASA to train astronauts to run their experiments and have even engaged in direct space-to-ground communications with astronauts on the ISS while the experiments were being conducted.
Listen to Weislogel’s full interview with NASA Mission Control here.