Jessica Koehne

NASA Ames Research Center


Jessica E. Koehne is a Scientist at NASA Ames Research Center. She received a Ph.D. in Analytical Chemistry from UC Davis in 2009. She has 23 years of experience developing electrochemical sensor instrumentation for a variety of NASA missions. Dr. Koehne has received numerous honors and awards including the 2011 Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers and 2018 Women in Aerospace Achievement Award. She currently serves as an Executive Committee Member of the Electrochemical Society’s Sensor Division.



2024 CME NASA Symposium Abstract

As human spaceflight pushes beyond Low Earth Orbit (LEO), fabrication and repair solutions that can be performed during spaceflight will be critical. One solution to is In-Space Manufacturing (ISM), the capability to perform on-demand manufacturing and repair of consumables and components, spacecraft and/or habitats in an in-space environment.  ISM offers significant flexibility to missions as it allows for a high degree of tailorability.  Leveraging advancements in fabrication, repair and recycling, ISM provides a highly sustainable solution to exploration mission operations.



2018 CME NASA Symposium Abstract

Miniaturized biosensing devices for point-of-care diagnostics are of upmost importance to ensuring astronaut crew health and safety. As human space missions extend to longer durations, sensor resupply will not be a viable option. By relying on additive manufacturing and simple printing technology, biosensors can be fabricated in space, thus enabling adaptive crew health monitoring on long-duration space missions and habitation. Here we report a generic electrochemical biosensor platform that can be fabricated using a single printer and will require minimal crew time to operate. Functional inks manufactured from carbon nanotubes, gold nanoparticles, and silver nanoparticles were used to print a 3-electrode elechemical device. Biosensor devices were fabricated on both paper and Kapton substrates by either a piezo drop-on-demand inkjet printer and an atmospheric pressure plasma jet printer. The working electrodes were functionalized with both aptamer and antibody probes specific to troponin-I and cortisol. Sensor performance was characterized by cyclic voltammetry, differential pulse voltammetry, and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy. The results demonstrate that these biosensors can serve a miniaturized, low-cost, point-of-care devices for detection of proteins, hormones, and other small biomolecules. In the future, these biosensor devices will be fabricated and characterized on the International Space Station and the approach will be evaluated for future in-space manufacturing of point-of-care diagnostic devices.