Numerous areas of research in astrobiology/exobiology are improving an understanding of the potential for survival of Earth microbes in extraterrestrial environments, relevant to preventing contamination of other bodies by Earth organisms carried on spacecraft. As extraterrestrial samples are continued to be brought back to the Earth system for advanced research and analysis, there is an urgent need to understand and prevent biological contamination of the terrestrial environment. Mission-enabling and capability-driven research is required to improve NASA’s understanding of the potential for both forward and backward contamination; and improve methods and technologies for accurate, efficient, and effective minimization of biological contamination for outbound spacecraft and return samples.
The Planetary Protection Research (PPR) program solicits research in the following areas (in order of programmatic priority):
Estimated Total Program Funding: