NASA's Mars Science Laboratory mission, which landed the rover Curiosity on Mars in August 2012, accepts the Robert J. Collier Trophy from the National Aeronautic Association at a ceremony in Arlington, Va., on May 9, 2013. From left to right: Jonathan Gaffney, president and chief executive officer of the NAA; Charles Elachi, director of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., where the mission is managed; Charles Bolden, NASA administrator; Walter Boyne, chairman of the NAA; and Richard Cook, a recent project manager based at JPL.
The NAA established the Collier Trophy in 1911 and presents it yearly to recognize the greatest achievement in aeronautics or astronautics in America. The NAA's Collier citation notes the MSL team's "extraordinary achievements of successfully landing Curiosity on Mars, advancing the nation's technological and engineering capabilities, and significantly improving humanity's understanding of ancient Martian habitable environments."
More than 7,000 people in at least 33 U.S. states and 11 other countries have worked on the Mars Science Laboratory mission.
Image Credit: NAA
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