NASA Mars Rover Mission Picked for Smithsonian Honor

Press Release From: Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Posted: Thursday, March 14, 2013

NASA's Mars Science Laboratory Project, managed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., has been selected to receive the top group honor from the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum -- the Trophy for Current Achievement. The award will be presented on April 24 at a black-tie dinner in Washington, D.C.

The Mars Science Laboratory Project built and operates the rover Curiosity, which has been investigating past and current environments in Mars' Gale Crater since its dramatic sky-crane landing seven months ago.

The trophies for current and lifetime achievement are the National Air and Space Museum's most prestigious awards. They recognize outstanding achievements in the fields of aerospace science and technology and their history.

NASA's Mars Science Laboratory Project is using the Curiosity rover with its 10 science instruments to investigate whether an area within Mars' 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.

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