Who is Amit Kshatriya? Indian-born Engineer to Lead NASA’s ‘Moon to Mars Program’

NASA recently opened an office for its new ‘Moon to Mars Program’. For the first time, this program will be led by Indian-American software and robotics engineer Amit Kshatriya. His career in Space Projects started in the year 2003. Know about the mission here.

Amit Kshatriya Appointed as NASA’s First Chief of Moon to Mars Program
Amit Kshatriya Appointed as NASA’s First Chief of Moon to Mars Program

Indian-origin Amit Kshatriya was recently appointed as the new head of NASA’s ‘Moon to Mars mission. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) announced Amit as Deputy Associate Administrator on March 30, 2023 (Thursday). 



The ‘Moon to Mars’ Program was launched by the NASA Space Agency to establish a prolonged presence on the Moon. This will be required to assemble astronauts for the mission to Mars. 

Moon to Mars Program

The NASA agency opened up an office which is for the big purpose of organising the space mission and will be led by Indian-origin Software and Robotics Engineer Amit Kshatriya. This new administrative office will be overlooking NASA's group activities regarding the illustrious mission. 

This will be considered a part of the Exploration Systems Development Mission Directorate which supervises the agency's Artemis programme. As per the reports, the Artemis Programme is an initiative to deliver astronauts to the lunar surface.

Amit Kshatriya's Career in Space Exploration

Amit Kshatriya has been honoured with the NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal. Earlier, he was the Deputy Associate Administrator at the agency for the Common Exploration Systems Development Division.

He belongs to a family of Indian immigrants who shifted to the US. He pursued Mathematics at the California Institute of Technology and further completed his Master of Arts in Mathematics from the University of Texas.

Talking about his career, he began in 2003 with various space programmes and then worked as a software and robotics engineer. He had also been a spacecraft operator where he built robotic features of the International Space Station.

Esteemed Leadership Roles

As a leader, Amit Kshatriya controlled and formed alliances for the Space Launch System, Orion as well as Exploration Ground Systems strategies. He has also actively participated in the Artemis Campaign Development Division initiative.

As a space station flight director from 2014 to 2017, Amit guided international-level teams. He assisted in operating and implementing the space station projects during all stages of flight.

He was designated as the assistant deputy associate administrator in 2021 at the Exploration Systems Development Mission Directorate carried out at NASA Headquarters. Moreover, he bagged the leadership medal as he dedicated himself to the role of the lead flight director which was NASA’s 50th expedition to the space station.

Responsibilities as Head of NASA’s Moon to Mars 

Amit Kshatriya will be in charge of the programme in the planning and right execution of all human missions to the Moon and Mars, as stated in the official notification. The explorations activities on the Moon and Mars will be conducted for the benefit of humanity. 

Bill Nelson, NASA’s administrator postulated that this new office will help in preparing humanity for the upcoming missions to the Red Planet. The main aim is to initiate a new era of scientific discovery and it will also target crucial points like focus on hardware development, mission integration along with risk management functions.

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