Charles Redmond Headquarters, Washington, D.C.

December 20, 1993 (Phone: 202/358-1757) RELEASE: 93- 225 NASA MODIFIES FUNDING SUPPORT FOR CENTERS FOR COMMERCIAL DEVELOPMENT Acting on the recommendations of an independent peer review committee, NASA today announced it will phase out its support for six of the Centers for the Commercial Development of Space (CCDS). The centers whose funding is being phased out are (with their research speciality): o Center for Advanced Materials, Battelle Laboratories, Columbus, Ohio o Center for Commercial Crystal Growth in Space, Clarkson University, Potsdam, New York o Center for Materials for Space Structures, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio o Center for Cell Research, Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania o Center for Space Transportation and Applied Research, University of Tennessee, Tullahoma, Tennessee o Space Automation and Robotics Center, Environmental Research Institute of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan NASA will begin working immediately with the centers to ensure an orderly phase out over the next several months. The phase-out activities will begin immediately. In addition, NASA will work with the remaining 11 centers to implement specific recommendations of the peer review team. - more -2The agency's decision to conduct a peer review at this time is consistent with the overall charter of the CCDS program and Congressional guidance. Gregory M. Reck, NASA's Acting Associate Administrator for the Office of Advanced Concepts and Technology, the program office responsible for the CCDS program, said this review and the recommendations NASA is implementing

are designed to strengthen the agency's commercial development activities. Mr. Reck said these actions will further focus the efforts of the CCDS community on relevant commercial technologies and stronger industrial partnerships. The peer review team was chaired by Dr. Robert Costello, a noted technology transfer expert and the founder of the Austin-based Sematech consortia. The review team studied case histories and paid site visits to 15 of the 17 CCDS organizations (excluding the recently-created Florida Atlantic University and University of Maryland CCDS organizations associated with communications). At NASA's direction, the team rated each of the CCDS organizations on their subscription to a "commercial" criterion. The review team's judgment and recommendations were driven by whether a CCDS was pursuing projects which had clearly-defined commercial goals or which were supported by relatively robust levels of industry-matched funds. The review team provided NASA with a set of general guidelines regarding the CCDS program and its efficacy as a vehicle for commercialization of space. The review team said the CCDS program "is a valid approach to and may serve as a conceptual scheme for the commercialization of space," but that the program was not intended to be a "detailed prescription of the way the total commercialization of space should proceed." The review team also said the program should "be managed flexibly enough to allow for retreats, accommodations, regroupings and terminations," and should be characterized by flexibility. The team also noted that the space research and technology development efforts of the CCDS program should focus on depth rather than breadth and should address solutions "of the most relevant problems identified by industrial partners." - more -3The CCDS program was established by NASA in 1985 in response to White House directives to increase private sector investment and interest in commercial space-related activities, while encouraging U.S. economic leadership and stimulating advances in promising areas of research and development. The CCDS's are based at universities and research institutions across the country and are allied with appropriate NASA field centers and affiliated industrial partners. Since the program began, NASA has issued four solicitations in various areas of promising space-related commercial research and

development. From those solicitations, 17 centers had been established in eight industry-related, space-based, high-technology research areas: materials processing, biotechnology, remote sensing, communications, automation and robotics, space propulsion, space structures and space power. Technological breakthroughs have led to new products in medicine, power components, electronics and other areas. As a direct result of the CCDS program, 17 new companies now exist in eight states across the country. - end-