Tuskegee University is the recipient of the Small Business Subcontractor of the Year award from NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center. A first for the institution, the award was presented for Tuskegee’s research support of Jacobs Space Exploration Group.
Jacobs is a professional and technical services provider to NASA, contributing to many of NASA’s spaceflight programs with employees, including the Space Launch System.
Tuskegee provides Jacobs with professional engineering subcontracting support under a Mentor Protégé Agreement that began in 2009.
Tuskegee’s team is comprised of nine full-time employees, including one Tuskegee graduate who formerly interned for Jacobs, according to Heshmat Aglan, dean of the College of Engineering. Students periodically rotate through the research team as part of their semester-long internships.
“Our team’s strengths and contributions lie in the areas of software development and testing support, propulsion design and fluid dynamics, contamination control, polymers and composites, and systems engineering for the proposed Lunar Orbital Platform-Gateway space station,” said Aglan.
“Tuskegee has performed extremely well in support of Jacobs on our Engineering Services and Science Capability Augmentation contract,” said Randy Lycans, Jacobs’ vice president and program manager. “During the course of our partnership, several students have spent the spring and summer terms with us under our intern program providing valuable technical contributions to the Space Launch System program.”
The Engineering Services and Science Capability Augmentation contract, awarded by NASA in August 2017, includes design, analysis, development and testing services.
The award to Tuskegee University was among those presented by Marshall Space Flight Center during its Industry and Advocate Awards for fiscal year 2019. Tuskegee’s selection places it in contention for the Agency Small Business Subcontractor of the Year award, which will be announced at a later date by NASA’s Office of Small Business Programs.
The Small Business Subcontractor of the Year Award from Marshall was the second award stemming from Tuskegee’s ongoing research relationship with Jacobs. In March, Jacobs awarded Tuskegee with one of its 2018 Supplier Excellence Awards.
Tuskegee University, founded in 1881, is one of the nation’s historically black colleges and universities, with more than 3,000 students.