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NASA awards $5 million to UPR

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration of the United States (NASA) has conferred the University of Puerto Rico in Río Piedras a $5 million grant to perform a series of projects at the Center for Advanced Nanoscale Materials. The University was selected as one of seven minority institutions to receive NASA's Minority University Research and Education Program contribution, from a total of 42 institutions across the US.

The UPR will benefit from this contribution, which amounts to $1 million per year for five years to launch projects that includes an investigation focusing on improving living conditions for astronauts in space, as well as purification of water and air and another to build up high-energy nano materials with the capacity size of lithium batteries; other projects are sensors capable of performing under extreme outer space conditions, along with gas and bio sensors for biomedical applications. Proposal's writer, director of the center and professor in the Natural Sciences department, Carlos Cabrera, announced that the UPR will supply $1.5 million in matching funds for the investigation.

The goal of NASA's education program is to establish significant, multi-disciplinary scientific, engineering and commercial research centers at the host universities that contribute substantially to NASA programs. Cabrera said there are two doctoral students who worked on investigations in previous funding cycle who are being considered for work in NASA. The other colleges and universities selected to receive the minority university research grant from NASA are California State University, Howard University, Florida International University, Morgan State University, Prairie View A&M University and Texas Southern University.

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