Department of Physics and Engineering

West Virginia Wesleyan College


Devon Miller Lands NASA Internship

Devon Miller participated in the NASA Lunar and Planetary Science Academy at Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland during the summer of 2010.

Devon reports, "I worked on a lunar dust mitigation project. To permit astronauts to spend more time in space, lunar dust needs to be better controlled. If too much dust enters the living areas, breathing becomes difficult.

"Our method of solving the dust problem uses a low-power electron beam in a vacuum and a small electric field that acts as a dust collector.

"We also took a week-long trip to Racetrack Playa in Death Valley, California, to study the phenomena of the roving rocks. The rocks move around on the almost flat surface of a dried up lake bed. The rocks leave behind trails that are hundreds of feet long.

"No one has ever witnessed this happening. We took measurements of the moving rocks to form a hypothesis on the mechanisms required to move the rocks.

"National Geographic magazine wrote an article on this project, which included this photo of me."


A picture of a student resting his foot on a moving rock in Death Valley National Park.

Devon Miller at Death Valley