Speaker: Dr. Anita Sengupta

Research Professor @University of Southern California
Dr. Anita Sengupta has been developing spacecraft technologies enabling the exploration of Mars, Venus, and deep space for the past decade at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). She started her career working on the Delta IV launch vehicle and communications satellites in the aerospace industry. After joining NASA JPL, she began her PhD research on improving the efficiency and lifetime of the ion thrusters that are now powering NASA’s Dawn Spacecraft, on its journey to Vesta and Ceres in the main asteroid belt. After that, she was responsible for the supersonic parachute system that was integral to the entry, descent, and landing of NASA’s Curiosity rover on August 6th 2012. She is currently the Project and Mission Manager for the Cold Atom Laboratory, a laser cooling atomic physics facility to be launched to the International Space Station in August of 2017. Dr. Sengupta will talk about the motivation for Mars exploration and the challenges of landing on a planet over 500 million kilometers from Earth. She will share her personal experiences in space exploration and discus the importance of pursuing a career in science and technology. She received her MS (’00) and PhD (’05) is Aerospace engineering from USC where she is also a Research Associate professor in the Astronautics Department teaching undergraduate spacecraft design

Find Dr. Anita Sengupta at

Keynote: Engineering the Red Planet


Monday, 13 June

Tuesday, 14 June

Wednesday, 15 June