Bob Jacobs Headquarters, Washington (Phone: 202/358-1760) RELEASE: 02-123

July 10, 2002

REMAP TASK FORCE RECOGNIZED BY NASA ADMINISTRATOR AND NASA ADVISORY COUNCIL CHAIR NASA Administrator Sean O'Keefe today expressed his appreciation for the work completed by an independent task force, made up of Nobel laureates and world-class scientists and engineers, charged with identifying research priorities for the agency. The Research Maximization and Prioritization Task Force, or ReMaP, completed an external review and presented its Executive Summary this morning to the NASA Advisory Council (NAC). The following is a statement from Administrator O'Keefe. "In March, I asked this distinguished panel to undertake the difficult challenge to review, assess and help define the science and research priorities for the Office of Biological and Physical Research. OBPR has the unique environment of space in which to conduct its research. "The recommendations outlined by the ReMaP Task Force will help NASA develop a comprehensive strategy that will fully utilize the research capabilities of the International Space Station, the Space Shuttle, and OBPR's full complement of science-driven programs. "One important ReMaP recommendation - establishing a Chief Science Officer on board the International Space Station - is something I hope to implement quickly once the criteria for the position is firmly established. Expedition Five astronaut Dr. Peggy Whitson would be an ideal candidate, considering her extensive post-graduate background in scientific research. We intend to move forward as expeditiously as possible and make the Chief Science Officer an integral part of every space station Expedition Crew. "ReMaP Chair Dr. Rae Silver, Vice-Chair Dr. David Shirley, and the rest of the dedicated members of this task force are truly interested in seeing the full research potential of the

space station and this Agency realized, and I would like to express my gratitude for their efforts. "As I said, this is a challenge. It is the first time NASA has attempted to prioritize its research objectives across multiple disciplines into a comprehensive and fully integrated research strategy. However, I believe it's a manageable task and I'm encouraged by the work I've seen, so far. I look forward to the final recommendations of the NASA Advisory Council and working with the entire science community to reap the full benefits of this Agency's spacebased research portfolio." The NAC is expected to provide its final recommendations to Administrator O'Keefe later this summer. The following is a statement from Dr. Charles F. Kennel, Chair of the NASA Advisory Council. "The NAC wishes to thank the ReMaP Task Force for an extremely difficult task done well in a short period of time. It takes courage, insight, and determination for a group of scientists to establish priorities between competing and diverse subjects, which the ReMaP members have done admirably in this challenging area. This contribution can guide NASA now, and in the future, as it develops plans for the International Space Station utilization. "The NAC intends to ask NASA to explain how its science plans fit with the ReMaP findings and recommendations, and how NASA proposes to respond to the ReMaP recommendations concerning the Office of Biological and Physical Research organization. The NAC believes that the first priority for NASA is to reach core complete as soon as possible, and agrees with the ReMaP Task Force's recommendation that an expansion of ISS science beyond that is essential. "In the period of time prior to the NAC's September meeting, the advisory council will work with NASA to develop an agenda that will provide for a full, searching and vigorous examination of all aspects of the ReMaP findings and recommendations, together with NASA's response to those findings, so that the NAC can propose positive and constructive recommendations to NASA. It is the intention of the NAC, working with NASA, to surface the key issues surrounding this vital task."

Additional information from the ReMap Task Force is available on the Internet at: http://www.nasa.gov/newsinfo/remap.html -end-