NASA Asteroid Contest

Welcome Teachers and Students!


To view the 2013 winners click here.


You Are Planning a Mission to an Asteroid!

Comparative sizes of eight asteroids, courtesy NASA

Past human space exploration has influenced the thinking of scientists, politicians, artists and the general public and has lead to new discoveries and products. Now it is time to ask you — what must we need to consider to send a human crew on mission to an asteroid?

This Spring, 2013, we invite students from across the nation to academically challenge themselves as they dive into the world of science and mathematics with the NASA Asteroid Contest. Prepare a presentation to NASA that outlines your mission plans for human crew to travel to an asteroid! Which asteroid should we visit? What is the mission goal? What challenges will you need to identify, and how will you solve the challenge?

Winners of this Asteroid Contest will not receive prizes or monetary awards, but those who have displayed exemplary workmanship and creativity, will have the opportunity to have their presentation highlighted on the NASA website. Such an honor can really help as you pursue your future educational goals.

NASA, Clemson University*, Orion’s Quest, Square One Education Network, and other members of the NASA Human Health and Performance Center are collaborating to develop and conduct this educational contest for students in the 6th through 8th grades, approximately between the ages of 11 and 14. Our goal is to engage more students in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math and to stimulate students by providing an opportunity for them to explore and discover.

No submissions will be accepted prior to 1/15/2013 nor after 3/8/2013.

How to enter
About asteroids and human space flight
For Teachers

Thank you, and please email us at if you have questions. All email should originate from the parent/guardian email account.

Ben Stephens, Ph.D.
NASA Asteroid Challenge Team
Department of Psychology

The 2012 NASA Contest winners may be viewed here!

*Support also provided by the Clemson Human Factors Institute, the Clemson Creative Inquiry Program, and the College of Business and Behavioral Science.

We thank Kevin Rosenquist at Wyle for his leadership on this NHHPC project, and NASA’s Humans in Space Youth Art Competition and Jancy McPhee for guidance. Students should note that the international Humans in Space Youth Art Competition will be conducted again this Spring. Go to Humans in Space Youth Art Competition for more information.

We also thank the following NHHPC partners for valuable input and support:

Committee for Action Program Services
DLR Institute of Aerospace Medicine
Exploration Architecture Corporation (XArc)
Lincoln Center Institute
NASA Ames Research Center
NASA Johnson Space Center
National Space Biomedical Research Institute
Orion’s Quest
SolaMed Solutions, LLC
South Union Community Development Corporation
Southwest Research Institute
Space Center Houston
Square One Education Network
Universities Space Research Association
Wyle Science Technology and Engineering
Zoological Society of San Diego