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NASA JPL Internal Email From Bobby Braun, Director for Planetary Science: Creating the Future of Planetary Science

Press Release From: Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Posted: Monday, March 30, 2020

March 30, 2020

To: 4x Personnel

From: Bobby Braun, Director for Planetary Science

Subject: Creating the Future of Planetary Science

Like you, my focus over the past several weeks has been on the health of my family, friends, and colleagues. As we adjust to this new normal, please continue to put the wellness and safety of our community first in the coming weeks.

I am heartened by the manner in which we transitioned our program office functions to telework, while maintaining limited, launch-critical hardware efforts on Lab and at KSC. Thank you for your support in this regard. While I had planned to have this discussion in person – and we will still do that at some point – the attached memo and slides provide additional detail on the organizational changes we've talked about over the past few months and are implementing today.

Today, the Mars Exploration Directorate and the Solar System Exploration Directorate are integrating to form the new Planetary Science Directorate (4X).

This new organization comes at a critical time as the nature of NASA's planetary science efforts continues to expand and the next decade's blueprint has yet to be written. This new organization is designed to improve our alignment and communications with NASA HQ and our partner organizations, improve the integration & communication of our priorities and challenges across the Lab, and strengthen our collaboration and interactions with the planetary science community. We will learn from each other and be an even greater force for discovery going forward.

In the coming months, there will be ample opportunity to delve into the specifics of this new organization and its strategy forward. Please review the attached. We will discuss these materials in our remote staff meeting on March 31. I welcome your input and feedback, and am excited to work with you in solving the challenges that lie ahead.

Thank you for your help in creating the future of planetary science.


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