Mars exploration: Curiosity and beyond

7.00pm to 8.30pm, Thursday 16 June

The Theatre

The Royal Institution of Great Britain GB United Kingdom W1S 4BS 21 Albemarle Street London

This event has already taken place

  • Curiosity approaching Mars (artist's conception)

    Curiosity approaching Mars (artist's conception)

    Credit: By NASA/JPL-Caltech [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons


Standard £14

Concession £10

Discounts for Ri Members

Event description

In August of 2012 NASA landed the largest and most capable robotic geologist in history, on the surface of Mars. The Curiosity Rover is on a journey to determine past and present habitability of the Red Planet. Anita Sengupta is one of the lead NASA engineers who developed the system to land Curiosity. She will describe the challenges of landing on Mars and what is over the horizon on our human journey to Mars.


Anita Sengupta is the Cold Atom Laboratory (CAL) Project Manager at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. She has been designing and developing plasma propulsion and entry, descent and landing systems for the past decade. Prior to CAL she was the parachute systems engineer for the Mars Science Laboratory Mission. She holds a BS in Aerospace Engineering from Boston University and a MS and PhD in Aerospace engineering from the University of Southern California, where she is a Research Associate professor.

Jill Stuart, an academic based at the London School of Economics, will chair the event. Since March 2013 she has been Editor in Chief of the journal Space Policy. Her research focuses primarily on the politics, law, theory and governance of outer space.


This event will be filmed and on the Ri Channel within a few months. Subscribe for free to hear when new videos are released.

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