Indian-American Swati Mohan leads NASA rover to land on Mars
Guwahati: As the world witnessed the historic landing of NASA’s Perseverance rover on the Martian surface, it was Indian-American scientist, Swati Mohan, who led the guidance, navigation and control operations of the Mars 2020 misison.
Mohan has been associated with the Perseverance Rover since its inception, and was working on the project for over seven years. She was also a part of NASA’s Cassini mission to Saturn.
“Touchdown confirmed”, exclaimed Mohan, who emigrated from India to the US when she was only a year old. While growing up, she spent her childhood in the Northern Virginia-Washington DC metro area.
Reportedly, after having watched ‘Star Trek’ for the first time at the age of nine, she was quite astounded by the beautiful depictions of the new regions of the universe that they were exploring. She has immediately realised that she wanted to do that and ‘find new and beautiful places in the universe’.
After working on several NASA projects, Swati Mohan spearheaded one of its most ambitious missions to bring back rocks from Mars to find signs of ancient life on the Red Planet.
The NASA rover streaked through the orange Martian sky and landed on the planet on Friday, sending cheers across the world. It took a tension-filled 11 ½ minutes for the signal to reach earth.