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Curiosity Wins National Air and Space Museum Trophy
Curiosity Wins National Air and Space Museum Trophy
25 Apr 2013
(Source: NASA/JPL)

Curiosity's Entry, Descent and Landing Team at National Air and Space Museum
The entry, descent and landing team of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory project received the 2013 Trophy for Current Achievement from the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum on April 24, 2013. Pictured here in the back row are the following members of the team (from left to right): Tom Rivellini, Gavin Mendeck, Steve Lee, Miguel San Martin, Tomas Martin-Mur, Adam Steltzner, Ben Thoma, Howard Eisen and Ravi Prakash. In the front row (from left to right) are: Carl Guernsey, Keith Comeaux, Jody Davis, Ann Devereaux, Allen Chen and Fuk Li. The team members are from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., except for Mendeck (NASA Johnson Space Center, Houston) and Davis (NASA Langley Research Center, Hampton, Va.).

The team in charge of successfully landing NASA's Mars rover Curiosity, managed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., received the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum's highest group honor at a dinner in Washington on Wednesday night, April 24. The 2013 Trophy for Current Achievement honors outstanding achievements in the fields of aerospace science and technology.

National Air and Space Museum Trophy for NASA's Mars Science Laboratory
The leader of the entry, descent and landing team of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory project, Adam Steltzner of JPL (left), accepts the trophy from museum director Gen. J. R. "Jack" Dailey. Image credit: Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum

The Mars Science Laboratory Project built and operates the rover Curiosity, which has been investigating past and current environments in Gale Crater on the Red Planet since its dramatic sky-crane landing in August 2012. The rover has 10 science instruments to investigate whether an area within Gale Crater ever has offered an environment favorable for microbial life.

JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the project for NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington.

More information about the award and images of the team receiving the award are available at:

Several NASA planetary mission teams have won the award in previous years, including last year, when NASA's Cassini mission to Saturn, also managed by JPL, picked up the trophy. For a full listing of previous awardees, visit:

For more about the mission, visit:, and

You can follow the mission on Facebook and Twitter at: and

Jia-Rui Cook/Guy Webster 818-394-0850/4-6278
Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. /


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Last Updated: 25 Apr 2013