NASA Institute for Advanced Concepts
The NASA Institute for Advanced Concepts (NIAC) sought proposals and funded studies of revolutionary aeronautics and space concepts. Several solar sail and related concepts were funded by NIAC. It was operated by Universities Space Research Association (USRA) for NASA between February 1998 and August 31, 2007, when NASA terminated the program. NASA funded several studies on solar sails and related topics. The National Research Council (NRC) studied the effectiveness of the NIAC and published a report recommending reinstatement of the program.
- Ultralight Solar Sails for Interstellar Travel (Phase I)
- Antimatter Driven Sail for Deep Space Missions (Phase I)
- Antimatter Driven Sail for Deep Space Missions (Phase II)
- High-Acceleration Micro-Scale Laser Sails for Interstellar Propulsion (Phase I)
- Advanced Solar and Laser Pushed Lightsail Concepts (Phase I)
- The Magnetic Sail (Phase I)