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Ames Research Center

Ames research center (arc), commonly known as nasa ames, is a major nasa research center at moffett federal airfield in california's silicon valley. originally founded as the second national advisory committee for aeronautics laboratory (naca), that agency was dissolved and its assets and personnel transferred to the newly created national aeronautics and space administration (nasa) on october 1, 1958. nasa ames is named in honor of joseph sweetman ames, a physicist and one of the founding members of naca. at last estimate nasa has over us$3.0 billion in capital equipment, 2,300 research personnel and a us$860 million annual budget. ames was originally founded to conduct wind-tunnel research on the aerodynamics of propeller-driven aircraft; however, its role has expanded to encompass spaceflight and information technology. ames plays a role in many nasa missions. it provides leadership in astrobiology; small satellites; robotic lunar exploration; the search for habitable planets; supercomputing; intelligent/adaptive systems; advanced thermal protection; and airborne astronomy. ames also develops tools for a safer, more efficient national airspace. the center's current director is dr. simon p. "pete" worden (brigadier general, usaf retired). the site is mission center for several key current missions (kepler, the lunar crater observation and sensing satellite (lcross) mission, stratospheric observatory for infrared astronomy (sofia), interface region imaging spectrograph) and a major contributor to the "new exploration focus" as a participant in the orion crew exploration vehicle.