JPL Scientist Visits Robotics Teams

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Team Curiosity invited JPL Scientist Kevin Hand to a virtual Q&A with the Marlborough Community. Kevin is a planetary scientist and astrobiologist who is the Principal Investigator and Director of JPL’s Ocean Worlds Lab. His primary goal is to better understand the science of oceans in our solar system and their potential to host alien life.

After seeing Team Curiosity’s work, Kevin shared some great insights and tips from his personal experience. He emphasized the importance of keeping designs simple and physically prototyping and testing concepts. This is particularly relevant this season, when the Robotics teams have done much of their design work virtually using the computer aided design program OnShape.

Kevin also shared information about NASA’s process for developing future missions. Kevin is currently working to advance a mission to Jupiter’s Moon Europa. Europa is believed to be home to a large ocean encased in a thick layer of ice. The future mission would analyze samples at the surface of the ice to look for evidence of life underneath.

Lastly, Kevin gave a great preview of Mars Rover Perseverance’s landing this week. Students learned about the landing itself as well as the Rover’s planned mission to find evidence of past life on Mars.

From Team Curiosity and the Marlborough community, thank you to Kevin for taking the time to share his expertise with us!

Kevin Hand Bio