December 21, 2014



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NASA Technology Roadmaps

This was an ASEB led project. View the project page for further details.

The NRC will appoint a steering committee and up to seven panels to solicit external inputs to and evaluate the 14 draft technology roadmaps that NASA has developed as a point of departure. The study committee will also provide recommendations that identify and prioritize key technologies. The scope of the technologies to be considered includes those that address the needs of NASA’s exploration systems, Earth and space science, and space operations mission areas, as well as those that contribute to critical national and commercial needs in space technology. (This study will not consider aeronautics technologies except to the extent that they are needed to achieve NASA and national needs in space; guidance on the development of core aeronautics technologies is already available in the National Aeronautics Research and Development Plan.)

 The steering committee and panels will prepare two reports, as follows;

  • The steering committee will establish a set of criteria to enable prioritization of technologies within each and among all of the technology areas that the NASA technology roadmaps should satisfy.
  • Each panel will conduct a workshop focused on one or more roadmaps, as assigned, to solicit feedback and commentary from industry and academia on the 14 draft roadmaps provided by NASA at the initiation of the study. Other means of community engagement may be employed including submission of community white papers.
  • Based on the results of the community input and its own deliberations, the steering committee will prepare a brief interim report that addresses high-level issues associated with the roadmaps, such as the advisability of modifying the number or technical focus of the draft NASA roadmaps.
  • Each panel will meet individually to:

Suggest improvements to the roadmaps in areas such as:

  • the identification of technology gaps,
  • the identification of technologies not covered in the draft roadmaps,
  • development and schedule changes of the technologies covered,
  • a sense of the value (such as potential to reduce mass and/or volume, number of missions it could support, new science enabled, facility to operate, terrestrial benefit) for key technologies,
  • the risk, or reasonableness, of the technology line items in the NASA technology roadmaps, and
  • the prioritization of the technologies within each roadmap by groups such as high, medium, or low priority; this prioritization should be accomplished, in part, via application of relevant criteria described above and in a uniform manner across panels.

Prepare a written summary of the above for the steering committee

  • The steering committee will subsequently develop a comprehensive final report that

Summarizes findings and recommendations for each of the 14 roadmaps

Integrates the outputs from the workshops and panels to identify key common threads and issues

Prioritizes, by group, the highest priority technologies from all 14 roadmaps



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