Press Release

NASA Discovery Conference – Look Back, Moving Forward

By SpaceRef Editor
July 25, 2007
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WHAT: In 2007, NASA’s Discovery Program celebrates its 15th anniversary with a science conference that will bring together experts who lead Discovery’s scientifically rich, lower cost space explorations.

The Discovery Program seeks to achieve outstanding results using fewer resources and shorter development times than past projects with comparable objectives. NASA gave the green light to Discovery in 1992 with Mars Pathfinder, a bold mission to put a small rover on Mars.

In 15 years, ten missions have been selected to answer questions about how our solar system came to be, how we fit in, and what may be our fate. The two-day event will commemorate the successes of the completed Discovery missions: Mars Pathfinder, NEAR, Lunar Prospector, Genesis, Deep Impact and Stardust. It will also look forward to the successes anticipated from those missions not yet complete: MESSENGER, Dawn, and Kepler.

WHO: Expected attendees:

  • Alan Stern, the new Associate Administrator of NASA’s Science Mission Directorate, will be the featured speaker at the opening night dinner.
  • Dr. Michael New, Discovery Program Scientist will open the conference
  • Dr. Wes Huntress, former NASA Associate Administrator for Space Science will deliver the closing address
  • Paul Gilbert, Discovery Program manager based at Marshall Space Flight Center
  • Also on hand will be key scientists responsible for the previous Discovery missions. These researchers will reflect on their science goals and results along with engineering and management challenges and achievements.

WHEN: September 18-20, 2007

WHERE: The Embassy Suites Hotel, Huntsville, Alabama

TO ATTEND: News media interested in covering the event should contact Jennifer Morcone of the Marshall media relations office at 256-544-7199 no later than Monday, September 17.

The conference is free and open to the public but registration is required and space is limited. For more information about the conference and the complete the agenda please visit

SpaceRef staff editor.