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Exploration of the Moon and Asteroids by Secondary Students (ExMASS)

The Exploration of the Moon and Asteroids by Secondary Students (ExMASS) program is managed by the Center for Lunar Science and Exploration (CLSE), one of nine teams with the NASA Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI). ExMASS is an academic year-long, national standards-based lunar/asteroid research program that envelops students in the process of science. Working alongside their teachers and a scientist advisor, students undertake authentic, open-inquiry research projects that engage them in the process of science. At the end of the year, student research is reviewed by a panel of scientists. The top four teams present their research to this panel of scientists, competing for a chance to present their work at the Exploration Science Forum held at the NASA Ames Research Center in the summer.

For more information, please visit the FAQ page, or contact Andy Shaner at

ExMASS Research Recognized at 2016 Exploration Science Forum

Two of the four ExMASS posters displayed at the 2016 Exploration Science Forum (ESF) were recognized with awards in the ESF’s student poster competition. Kickapoo High School’s (Springfield, MO) poster, Excavation Depths as Indications of Magnesium Spinel Formation via Impact Melting received an Honorable Mention. The poster presented by Commack High School (Commack, NY), Resolving the Primary Mechanism Causing Floor-Fractured Craters Using GRAIL and LOLA Data, placed Third. A total of 24 posters, mostly presented by undergraduate and graduate students, were entered into the competition.

2016–2017 ExMASS Program Schools

Academy High School, Little River Academy, TX
Broadwater Academy, Exmore, VA
Clinton High School, Clinton, OK
Commack High School, Commack, NY
Crocker High School, Crocker, MO
Lincolnton High School, Lincolnton, NC
South High School, Minneapolis, MN
South Sevier High School, Monroe, UT
Ukiah High School, Ukiah, OR
Walthill Public School, Walthill, NE

ExMASS Program Resources

Frequently Asked Questions

2016–2017 Program Calendar (PDF)

Image Release Form (PDF)

Hosting Student Research Release Form (PDF)

ExMASS Alignment with the Next Generation Science Standards

Next Generation Science Standards: Science and Engineering Practices

Next Generation Science Standards: Nature of Science

Moon 101

Asteroid 101

Lunar/Asteroid Data Resources

For Mentors (Teachers) and Advisors

Other Resources

Archive of Past Presentations