The goal of a Rapid Prototyping Capability (RPC) is to speed the evaluation of potential uses of NASA research products and technologies to improve future operational systems by reducing the time to access, configure, and assess the effectiveness of NASA products and technologies. The developed RPC will accomplish this goal and contribute to NASA's Strategic Objective to advance scientific knowledge of the Earth system through space-based observation, assimilation of new observations, and development and deployment of enabling technologies, systems and capabilities including those with potential to improve future operational systems. (NASA, 2005)
The effort, led by the GeoResources Institute, will use a network of researchers at the University of Mississippi, Mississippi State University, NASA centers, United States Geological Survey, and other partners to provide the capability to rapidly assess the efficacy of proposed applications in Earth-Sun System Science to provide input to most if not all of the twelve National Application areas. The proposed RPC will provide the capability to integrate and provide access to the tools needed to evaluate the use of a wide variety of current and future NASA sensors and research results, model outputs, and knowledge. Competing methods will be examined, evaluated, and benchmarked quickly and creatively by a multi-disciplinary team of scientists. The team of scientists will be assembled from across the community. The scientists will work with a core group of researchers with broad expertise in grid computing, rapid prototyping capability, software engineering, image processing, programming, mathematical modeling, image analysis, and statistical analysis.
The RPC will provide the capability to rapidly evaluate innovative methods of linking science observations from current and near-term sensors and output from NASA models. The same capability will facilitate the demonstration and evaluation of improvements in future sensor systems and models and will provide a systematic way to extend the benefits of Earth system science research for society.
The capability will begin with a distributed system with nodes at the University of Mississippi, Mississippi State University, and NASA Stennis Space Center and evolve into an integrated network with capabilities to support most, if not all, data or model product, research results, and technology from NASA and their partners. The RPC will access existing NASA tools and resources to build a network of organizations to address a wide range of research questions.
The expected results of the development of an RPC will be a distributed system capable of evaluating, validating and verifying, and benchmarking research results to improve the ability to transition NASA developed research results and observations to operational agencies.