Rice Space Institute
As a world leader in space weather research, in plasma environments of distant planets, and in solar research, the Rice Space Institute ("RSI") invests in efforts to further development of new ideas and generate advanced research projects at the frontiers of knowledge. Its hallmark is its focus on distinct public outreach in partnership with organizations both on and off campus. In fact, the 2002 World Space Congress and the annual (beginning in 2006) Sally Ride Festivals were (are?) both joint efforts of RSI and its collaborators.
The Rice Space Institute, the youngest member institute of the Wiess School of Natural Sciences, was founded in 2000. However, Rice is not new to space research - Rice claimed the title of the first dedicated ‘Space Science’ department in the country, founded in 1963 after the historic JFK speech on campus in September 1962. Existing to bring space and space science closer than it has ever been to the general public, RSI boasts long-standing partnerships with the Houston Museum of Natural Science, the Baker Institute for Public Policy, and the Hubble Science Institute. It is also is an instrumental part of Rice’s only on-campus observatory, drawing visitors from near and far. RSI outreach efforts have ballooned in recent years, and include the development of a wide range of educational materials and activities to engage K-12 students in space exploration. Over 300 community community members belong to RSI’s Associates group. The Institute is also able to bring mobile, inflatable, completely immersive domed planetariums to students and adults as far away as Istanbul and Ethiopia to deliver its expertise in space science.
Currently, more than 150 faculty and research staff members from 20 departments comprise RSI. Its research areas include Space Weather, Space Exploration, Space Astronomy and Astrophysics, Space Technology, Space History and Public Policy, Space Education and Public Outreach, and Space Remote Sensing. Its mission is “to engage interdisciplinary research and education at all levels to achieve the vision of making the universe smaller and to chart the course for the next generation of peaceful uses of space.”
David Alexancer| Director | 713.348.3633 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Mike Massimino| Executive Director | 713.348.3827 | email@example.com