The Center for Astrophysics, Space Physics, and Engineering Research (CASPER) is a stand-alone research center located at Baylor University.
CASPER teams conduct research in a number of theoretical and experimental areas and offer both basic research as well as engineering and design opportunities for graduate, undergraduate, technical support and high school students as well as grade school, middle school and high school teachers.
Dusty Plasma research on this site (including that on the ISS employing the PK-4) is supported by the NSF and NASA.
WACO, Texas (August 13, 2019) – Through an invitation from the
United Nations in Vienna, Rene Laufer, Ph.D., presented an international team
of experts' study results on post-mission disposal for small satellites at the
62nd United Nations – Committee on the Peaceful Use of Outer Space
WACO, Texas (May 2, 2019) – Someday, in the not-too-distant-future, an Iowa farmer strolls out of his home and dons an augmented reality headset to view an overhead image of his crop supplied by a drone. With sweeps of his hand, he tags several small colored blotches superimposed over the spectroscopic image of his field like a weather-radar display. He summons a gangly water tanker and dispatches it to the thirsty plants and returns to the house for breakfast. Science fiction? At this point, yes, but such systems may be a reality soon, thanks in large part to the work of Dr. Marlan O. Scully in the Baylor Research and Innovation Collaborative’s Quantum Optics Laboratory.
Rene Laufer, Ph.D., associate research professor and head of the Space Science Lab in Baylor's Center for Astrophysics, Space Physics and Engineering Research (CASPER), is one of the creators of a TED-Ed lesson titled "How far would you have to go to escape gravity?"
Imagine looking under your couch and instead of finding fluffy dust
bunnies, you see the dust is arranged in straight lines—you might wonder what caused this order. Scientists are experiencing that same feeling, not with dust under a couch, but with electrically charged dust in the microgravity of space.