Home

Congratulations to the 2016 BIG Idea Challenge 1st Place Team!

The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, left to right: Austin Scott, Jose Mari Tuason, Sashank Gummella, Sam Wywrot, Steven Kosvick, and Dr. Zachary Putnam

The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign 1st place team, left to right: Austin Scott, Jose Mari Tuason, Sashank Gummella, Sam Wywrot, Steven Kosvick, and Dr. Zachary Putnam

The winner of the 2016 BIG Idea Challenge is the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign team. Their submission, titled Cable-Controlled Aeroshell Deceleration System, is available at the Past Competitions page.

You can view the NASA Feature Story on the 2016 BIG Idea Challenge Winners at NASA.gov.

Photos from the 2016 Forum can be found here on Flickr.


Sneak Peek for 2017 BIG Idea Competition!

Are you looking forward to the 2017 BIG Idea Competition? Check out next year's Sneak Peek competition flyer!
Full competition details will be released by July 22, 2016.

2017 big idea sneak peek thumbnail
"To participate, university teams of 3-5 students will submit proposals on ideas/concepts for in-space assembly of spacecraft – particularly tugs, propelled by solar electric propulsion (SEP), that transfer payloads for low Earth orbit (LEO) to a lunar distant retrograde orbit (LDRO)...." read more


The 2016 Breakthrough, Innovative and Game-changing (BIG) Idea challenge was an initiative supporting NASA’s Game Changing Development Program (GCDP) efforts to rapidly mature innovative/high impact capabilities and technologies for infusion in a broad array of future NASA missions. This GCDP-sponsored engineering design competition sought novel and robust ideas and applications for generating lift using HIAD technology.

Participation in the BIG Idea is open to teams of undergraduate and graduate students studying in fields applicable to human space exploration (i.e., aerospace, electrical, and mechanical engineering; and life, physical, and computer sciences). The BIG Idea challenge allows students to incorporate their coursework into real aerospace design concepts and work together in a team environment. Interdisciplinary teams are encouraged.