John D. Odegard School of Aerospace Sciences

News and information from the UND John D. Odegard School of Aerospace Sciences.

NDSGC Student, Denise Buckner, wins NASA Ames CIF Grant

Congratulations to NDSGC student, Denise Buckner (’19)!

October 4, 2018: This week, UND Space Studies graduate student, Denise Buckner, won a research grant from the Ames Center Innovation Fund (CIF). Last summer (2018), Buckner traveled to California where she interned at NASA Ames, working on contamination control and instrumentation for missions searching for extraterrestrial life. During her internship, she wrote a winning proposal that will allow her to continue her work at NASA Ames. With more than $25,000 awarded, she will be able to further her research: “Decontamination Procedures for Non-Aqueous Life Detection Microfluidic Systems”.

Buckner is a third-year Space Studies masters student minoring in Biology, where she works as a Graduate Research Assistant and NDSGC Fellowship Recipient. She is the student ballooning lead, organizing numerous launches for K-12 schools (Near-Space Balloon Competition), SpSt habitat missions (extravehicular activities), and graduate-led research. She also works at the Space Studies Observatory. Buckner is also the 2018 recipient of the North Dakota Space Grant Award. Her long-term goal? She hopes to pursue a career as an Astrobiologist in the search for extraterrestrial life and is particularly interested in the relationship between prebiotic chemistry and how life may originate on other planets. She graduated from Saint Louis University with a double major in Aviation Operations Management and English, and enjoys music and road trips.