A decorated Indian-American software and robotics engineer, Amit Kshatriya was appoint as the first head of NASA’s newly-establish Moon to Mars Programme that will help the agency ensure a long-term lunar presence need to prepare for humanity’s next giant leap to the Red Planet.
Amit Kshatriya will serve as NASA’s first head of the office, with immediate effect, the agency announce.
The new office aims to carry out the agency’s human exploration activities on the Moon and Mars for the benefit of humanity, a NASA press release said.
NASA Administrator Bill Nelson Said :
The new office resides within the Exploration Systems Development Mission Directorate, reporting to its Associate Administrator Jim Free, as per NASA press release.
As direct by the 2022 NASA Authorisation Act, the Moon to Mars Programme Office focuses on hardware development, mission integration and risk management functions for programmes critical to the agency’s exploration approach that uses Artemis missions at the Moon to open a new era of scientific discovery and prepare for human missions to Mars, as per NASA press release.
This includes the Space Launch System rocket, Orion spacecraft, supporting ground systems, human landing systems, spacesuits, Gateway, and more related to deep space exploration.
The new office will also lead planning and analysis for long-lead developments to support human Mars missions, as per NASA press release.
Amit Kshatriya will be responsible for programme planning and implementation for human missions to the Moon and Mars.
Amit Kshatriya direct and provide leadership and integration for the Space Launch System, Orion, and Exploration Ground Systems programmes, as well as associate Artemis Campaign Development Division initiatives linking the agency’s Moon to Mars objectives, as per NASA press release.
As before, Amit Kshatriya serve as the acting deputy associate administrator for the Common Exploration Systems Development Division.
Amit Kshatriya began his career in the space programme in 2003, working as a software engineer, robotics engineer, and spacecraft operator primarily focus on the robotic assembly of the International Space Station.
From 2014 to 2017, Amit Kshatriya serve as a space station flight director, where he led global teams in the operations and execution of the space station during all phases of flight.
In 2021, Amit Kshatriya was assign to NASA Headquarters in the Exploration Systems Development Mission Directorate as an assistant deputy associate administrator, where Amit Kshatriya was an integral part of the team that return a spacecraft designed to carry humans to the Moon during the Artemis I mission.
Son of first-generation Indian immigrants to the US, Amit Kshatriya holds a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics from the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, California, and a Master of Arts in Mathematics from The University of Texas at Austin.
Amit Kshatriya was born in Brookfield, Wisconsin, but considers Katy, Texas, to be his hometown.
Amit Kshatriya was decorated with the NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal for actions as the lead flight director for the 50th expedition to the space station, as well as the Silver Snoopy, an award that astronauts bestow for outstanding performance contributing to flight safety, for his actions as lead robotics officer for the Commercial Orbital Transportation Services Dragon demonstration mission to the orbiting laboratory, as per NASA press release.