NASA Johnson Space Center is home to NASA's extraterrestrial samples including past, present, and future missions. Curation includes the documentation, preservation, preparation, and distribution of samples from multiple collections. JSC has developed unique curation laboratories and procedures for each of the collections, including samples from the Moon, asteroids, comets, the solar wind, and the planet Mars. Although the Curation Office has over forty years of experience with different kinds of astromaterials, the next generation of sample return missions (e.g., comets, Mars, and lunar volatiles) will offer new challenges for the curation of these new samples. After a brief overview of the astromaterials collections, Dr. Righter will focus on curation approaches for Antarctic meteorites and the newly collected (but not yet returned to Earth) carbonaceous asteroids samples from the OSIRIS-REx mission to Bennu.
Kevin is a planetary scientist and curator for both the Antarctic meteorites and Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) asteroid samples within the Astromaterials Research and Exploration Science (ARES) Division at the Johnson Space Center. Before coming to Johnson, Kevin was a research associate in the department of planetary sciences at the University of Arizona in Tucson. Kevin currently uses the application of igneous petrology, experimental petrology and geochemical analysis to understand core formation, the origin of the Earth and Moon as well as differentiated and chondritic meteorites and the role of volatiles in the origin of basaltic magmatism. Kevin’s research and curation activities help ascertain the content, origin and evolution of the solar system and the potential of life elsewhere.