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NASA's Next Generation Spacecraft Brought to Life by a New Generation of Students
by Staff Writers
Cleveland OH (SPX) Oct 05, 2011

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Recent Cleveland State University graduates Adina Feigenbaum and Nick Matej were tapped by NASA's Glenn Research Center to design an exciting new look into the Orion spacecraft, the agency's deep space exploration vehicle.

During an 11-week intern program, Adina and Nick focused on the difficult task of translating extensive technical information and acronyms into entertaining and educational animations that can be easily understood by a new generation of space explorers. These new designs will give an engaging look at NASA's new focus on deep space exploration following the retirement of the historic Space Shuttle Program.

Possessing a variety of different skills, each student chose a different product in which to focus their efforts. Adina worked to render short animations to explain the Orion spacecraft and future missions. She also developed a piece supporting Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) careers, the cornerstone on which NASA's workforce is built.

Nick, who specializes in illustrations and print material, produced an Orion overview piece and illustrations that were later animated by Adina. He also developed a series of postcards describing Orion's future missions from the viewpoint of a teenager on a vacation with his parents.

"I did not go to school for engineering or science of any kind, yet here I am creating animations that explain the new space program at NASA," Adina said.

"I found that I really enjoyed taking complex information and creating a way to make it fun for kids to look at and understand. This summer internship has reassured me that design is what I love doing." She will continue her education with graduate studies at Kent State University, working on her Master of Fine Arts degree in visual communication design.

A self-proclaimed space enthusiast, Nick shared the excitement and pride he felt while working alongside NASA scientists and engineers. "The opportunity to take on this internship was really an honor. I've been interested in the space program ever since I can remember, so it was great to see how things worked from the inside."

The collaborative partnership between NASA and Cleveland State University began in 2009 when Professor Jennifer Visocky, who chairs the university's Art Department, combined her passion for space with providing her senior level graphics students with real world project experience.

To view the "Meet Orion" videos the students produced, click here.

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