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Mars InSight PI Bruce Banerdt to Provide Update to 2021 Mars Society Convention

The Mars Society is pleased to announce that Dr. William “Bruce” Banerdt, Principal Investigator for NASA’s Mars InSight lander, will give an update about its mission, accomplishments, and status during the 24th Annual International Mars Society Convention, set for October 14-17. A veteran scientist at Jet Propulsion Laboratory since 1983, Dr. Banerdt supervises InSight’s efforts to study the deep interior of the planet Mars, including its crust, mantle, and core. Using state-of-the-art instruments, the lander has also detected over 500… READ MORE >

JPL’s Vandi Verma to Give Update on Rover Mission Navigation at Mars Society Convention

Dr. Vandi Verma, JPL Supervisor of Operable Robotics for Mars Perseverance and Mars Curiosity, will provide a virtual update about navigating the two rover missions on the surface of Mars during the 24th Annual International Mars Society Convention, set for October 14-17, 2021. Dr. Verma joined JPL’s Mobility and Robotics Systems Section 14 years ago, with research interest in robotic software that enables autonomy and commanding under uncertainty for coordinated manipulation, mobility, sampling and science. Since 2008, she has been driving Mars rovers… READ MORE >

NASA’s Carol Stoker to Detail Search for Life on Red Planet at 2021 Mars Society Convention

Dr. Carol Stoker, a veteran planetary scientist at NASA’s Ames Research Center and a founding member of the Mars Underground, will give a virtual plenary address entitled “The Search for Life on Mars: What We Are Doing & What We Should Do” during the 24th Annual International Mars Society Convention, scheduled for October 14-17, 2021. Dr. Stoker has been involved with the Ames Research Center for 36 years, specializing in a range of Mars exploration science and technology. Most of… READ MORE >

Roving Mars: Advancing Machines Explore the Red Planet

By Lawrence Klaes, Guest Writer, The Mars Society If there is one highlight among many that the Twenty-First Century can be noted for when it comes to space exploration, it is as the era when the automated rover really took off – and all over – the planet Mars. At this moment, there are three functioning multi-wheeled explorers making their way across different parts of the Red Planet, their suites of instruments gleaning what they can about their new homes… READ MORE >

Update from JPL’s Katie Stack Morgan about Perseverance during Mars Society Convention

The Mars Society is pleased to announce that Dr. Katie Stack Morgan, Jet Propulsion Laboratory Deputy Project Scientist for NASA’s Perseverance rover, will provide an update about the mission’s current work exploring the Martian surface as well as future planning during the 24th Annual International Mars Society Convention, scheduled for October 14-17, 2021. The Perseverance rover landed on the planet Mars earlier this year in February, with the goal of searching for signs of ancient life and collecting samples of… READ MORE >

Titan Dragonfly PI Elizabeth Turtle to Give Update at 2021 Mars Society Convention

The Mars Society is pleased to announce that Dr. Elizabeth Turtle, Principal Investigator of NASA’s Dragonfly rotorcraft-lander mission to Saturn’s largest moon Titan, will give a virtual update about the spacecraft during the 24th Annual International Mars Society Convention, set for October 14-17, 2021. Scheduled for launch in 2026 and arrival in 2034 and taking advantage of Titan’s dense atmosphere and low gravity, Dragonfly will explore dozens of locations across the moon’s frozen surface, sampling and measuring the composition of its organic materials, with… READ MORE >

New Horizons Mission Lead Alan Stern to Give Keynote at Virtual Mars Society Banquet

Dr. Alan Stern, NASA’s Principal Investigator for its New Horizons mission that successfully explored Pluto and its moons and is currently navigating the Kuiper Belt, will be giving the keynote address at the 2020 International Mars Society Convention’s virtual banquet on Saturday, October 17th at 7:30 pm PDT (10:30 pm EDT). A respected planetary scientist and author, Dr. Stern serves as Associate Vice President at the Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colorado. His academic research has focused on the Kuiper… READ MORE >

JPL Mars Systems Engineer to Participate in Virtual Mars Society Convention

The Mars Society is pleased to welcome Dr. Farah Alibay, a veteran JPL Systems Engineer involved in multiple Mars exploration missions, as a virtual speaker during the 23rd Annual International Mars Society Convention, scheduled for October 15-18. Since 2014, Dr. Alibay has worked on a variety of NASA missions, spanning the phases of development, from early mission concepts to integration and testing all the way to cruise and surface operations. These include: GNC-Mobility Systems Engineer for the Mars Perseverance rover,… READ MORE >

NASA Mars Helicopter Chief Engineer Bob Balaram to Speak at 2020 Mars Society Convention

The Mars Society is pleased to welcome Dr. J. Bob Balaram, Chief Engineer for NASA’s Mars Ingenuity helicopter, currently en route to the Red Planet as part of the Mars Perseverance rover mission, to the 23rd Annual International Mars Society Convention, scheduled for October 15-18. A 25-year veteran of Pasadena’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Dr. Balaram has led the development of the Mars helicopter project, which is intended to demonstrate technologies needed for flying in the Martian atmosphere. If successful, these… READ MORE >

JPL Mars Operable Robotics Supervisor to Address Virtual Mars Society Convention

Dr. Vandi Verma, JPL Supervisor of Operable Robotics for the Mars Perseverance and Mars Curiosity missions, will discuss navigating rovers on the Martian surface during the 23rd Annual International Mars Society Convention, scheduled for October 15-18. Dr. Verma joined JPL’s Mobility and Robotics Systems Section in 2007, with research interest in robotic software that enables autonomy and commanding under uncertainty for coordinated manipulation, mobility, sampling and science. Since 2008, she has been driving Mars rovers (MER, MSL) and operating the… READ MORE >

2020 Virtual Mars Society Convention to Host Senior Mars Scientists

The Mars Society, the world’s largest space advocacy group dedicated to the human exploration and settlement of the Red Planet, will be convening its 23rd Annual International Mars Society Convention on October 15-18, 2020 for our global community via the Internet. Through the use of unique technology provided by the TMRO company of Anaheim, CA, it will be possible to not only hold presentations, panel discussions and debates, but also to allow people from around the world to participate, posing… READ MORE >

Senior Engineer for Mars 2020 Rover to Address Mars Society Teleconvention

Dr. Sarah Milkovich, lead Science Systems Engineer for NASA-JPL’s Mars Perseverance rover, scheduled to launch this July, will give a virtual update about the mission to the 23rd Annual International Mars Society Convention, set for October 15-18. During her 14 years at JPL, Dr. Milkovich has specialized in science planning and operations for landed and orbital spacecraft, geomorphology and planetary science research, science communication and the ability to handle nebulous problems. Prior to the Mars 2020 rover mission, she served… READ MORE >