Global hackathon uses NASA knowledge to solve problems in space and on earth

RENO, Nev., March 28, 2016 – NASA’s fifth annual International Space Apps Challenge is less than a month away, and Reno-area space aficionados—engineers, coders, makers, artists, storytellers—are urged to sign up at[] and participate in what has become the world’s largest hackathon.

Reno is one of more than 193 locations spanning 72 countries hosting part of the 48-hour event, which is basically a two-way technology exchange between NASA and teams of citizen scientists and entrepreneurs.  Space Apps participants have access to NASA data and can apply it to innovations that improve future space missions or life on earth.

Space Apps demonstrates the power of crowdsourcing, collaboration, community, and citizen involvement.  Some Space Apps teams will come up with viable space mission solutions or earthly commercial products, and all participants will get a great hands-on learning experience.

“The Reno Space Apps team can use a wide variety of skills, and space enthusiasts with any level of experience are welcome,” said Reno Space Apps organizer Joe Chavez.  Local businesses and organizations are also encouraged to join EDAWN (Economic Development Authority of Western Nevada) as Reno Space Apps sponsors.

Reno Space Apps and other Space Apps teams around the globe will select and tackle challenges from one or more of NASA’s official categories for the 2016 hackathon:  Technology; Aeronautics; Space Station; Solar System; Earth; and Journey to Mars.

The 2016 Reno Space Apps effort was kicked off with a poster design contest won by Peter Laxalt, creative director of local marketing communications firm Laxalt & McIver.  Laxalt’s poster is being used to promote the Reno Space Apps event, which is being held April 23-24 at the DeLaMare Library on the University of Nevada’s Reno campus.

This year’s Reno Space Apps event is joining forces with the Microsoft Reno Hackathon, which will be building apps with Microsoft’s Visual Studio or Azure cloud platform.  Participants in both groups will be competing for a special Space Apps prize.

More info at[]

For more information about Reno Space Apps, contact:

Joe Chavez

President, STEAM Initiative


About NASA’s International Space Apps Challenge

The annual International Space Apps Challenge hackathon was launched in 2012 as part of NASA’s innovation incubator program, and provides a forum for a two-way technology transfer.  NASA technology and data can be commercialized or otherwise applied on Earth, while real-world problems NASA still faces are crowdsourced to Space Apps participants.  For more information, see[].

About STEAM Initiative and Reno Space Apps

Space Apps Reno is now a program of STEAM Initiative, a new Reno-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit dedicated to creating learning activities in the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics.  These activities foster creative and analytical skills that are key components of the entrepreneurial mindset and critical to innovation in a global economy.  STEAM focuses on projected-oriented and goal-oriented learning, which the Space Apps Challenge hackathon exemplifies.  For more information, see[].