BOSTON >> Technology created at the University of Massachusetts is soon expected to help NASA scientists explore hidden parts of space.

The technology blocks direct light from starts so scientists can see objects near the stars that are normally hidden by glare. It was developed at Umass-Lowell with a $1.4 million grant from NASA. A rocket using the equipment is scheduled to launch Monday from New Mexico.

At the edge of the atmosphere, the rocket's technology will block light coming from the Epsilon Eridani star to provide a better view with a telescope. Scientists believe the billion-year-old star has nearby planets that have largely gone unseen because of the star's glare.

It's part of a broader goal to discover Earth-like planets beyond our solar system that are capable of supporting life.