News, features & press releases
Current, future, past missions & launch dates
News, features & press releases
News, features & press releases
News, features & press releases

How to Apply

How to Participate


E-mail the drawing file and entry form to by no later than March 1, where there is only a single deadline this year. Note that the drawing and entry files must be named as CELERE_2018____ where the drawing is a dwg file and the entry file is in a pdf or doc format.

Key Documents

The following documents should be downloaded as you will need them for background information, as you work on this design challenge and/or to submit your entry as discussed in the Preparation and Submission section below. The documents below are still valid even though they are dated 2016 and 2017.

CELERE Overview
CELERE 2017 Handbook
CELERE 2017 Tutorial
CELERE 2017 Entry Form
CELERE 2016 TESTCELL TEMPLATE  (you will need the DraftSight software to open this file)
DraftSight Software

Preparation and Submission

  • Explore the CELERE website at
  • If you are a Facebook user, ‘like’ the CELERE page at
  • Read the this year’s CELERE handbook.
  • Learn about capillary action, e.g., through:
  • Review the past experiments through and the appendix of the CELERE handbook.
  • Download this year’s CELERE tutorial.
  • Download this year’s drawing template.. The test cell has been redesigned and use of past templates is unacceptable.
  • Download the Draftsight CAD software and go through the CELERE tutorial. You may use other CAD software that works with ‘dwg’ files, but the tutorial is based on the free Draftsight software.
  • Review the CELERE design requirements and common mistakes in the CELERE Handbook.
  • Develop your research question.
  • Design your test cell so that (1) the results will answer your research question and (2) it is different from the past CELERE experiments shown in the appendix.
  • Download the CELERE entry form and fill it out.
  • Verify that all design requirements are fully met or risk rejection!
  • E-mail the drawing file and entry form to to by no later than March 1, where there is only a single deadline this year.

Testing and Analysis

  • If requested, revise your test cell drawing. Revisions are sometimes requested when entries are tentatively selected even though design requirements are not met.
  • Selected experiments are normally conducted during the month of their submission deadline.
  • When the results are ready, we will provide you with a sight to download your results.  Note that the video files are not standard, but can be viewed using VLC Media Player, which can be freely downloaded from
  • Analyze the results by comparing the capillary motion in your test cell’s channels. You can determine the position of the oil in each channel as a function of time (e.g., knowing that high-speed video includes 60 frames per second). The position can be determined in pixels, e.g., using Microsoft Paint, which shows the position of the crosshairs in pixels, and then converted later into millimeters.
  • From the position data, average speeds can easily be determined.
  • Prepare a short final report about what you learned, and e-mail the report to (where the submission might be done by your teacher/advisor). The report should include discussion of what was good about the CELERE Design Challenge and what needs improvement.

Key Changes from CELERE 2016

    • For 2017, there is just a single deadline of March 1 (rather than a choice of Feb. 1, March 1, or April 1).
    • CELERE participants are invited to present their results in a student poster session at the 2017 meeting of the American Society for Gravitational and Space Research (ASGSR, on Sat., Oct. 28. Limited financial support will be available for non-local teams to travel to Seattle for this purpose.
    • Cut lines may no longer touch the border zone (with the diagonal marks), i.e., even just at the inner edge.
    • The use of merged channels (and thus ‘islands’) is now prohibited.
    • The 2017 tutorial is based on DraftSight 2017.
    • The drawing template has been updated. Please use the 2017 drawing template which can be downloaded from the link above.



Adobe Acrobat





This page maintained by
Nancy R. Hall, NASA Glenn Research Center
Last Updated on January 12, 2015

NASA Privacy Statement