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STEM Rising: Countdown to Mars

February 15, 2021

Tuesday, February 16
2pm – 3:30pm CST

Join scientists from three U.S. Department of Energy National Laboratories who made the Perseverance Rover’s mission to Mars possible. On February 18, NASA will attempt to land Perseverance on Mars.  The Department of Energy will give you the behind the scenes scoop on the work that it took to fuel the Rover from the STEM team at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Idaho National Laboratory, and Los Alamos National Laboratory.

Use this Zoom link to join at the start time of the event (Feb 16 - 2 p.m. CST)

The panel discussion is geared towards high school and college students, to show the exciting technology and space discovery that STEM careers make possible, but is open for all to attend. The U.S. Dept. of Energy (DOE) will highlight the DOE’s role in space exploration, and link students with options to explore their STEM future with the DOE, like internships and STEM events.

This event is hosted by STEM Rising, the U.S. Department of Energy’s effort to share all-things-STEM at the agency. Find more STEM resources and programs at STEM Rising,


  • Matt Dozier, Host of Direct Current Podcast, Office of Public Affairs – event emcee
  • Chris Browning, Technician for Space Security Power Systems Facility, Idaho National Laboratory
  • Shad Davis, Nuclear Research Facility Engineer, Idaho National Laboratory
  • Nidia Gallego, Senior Staff Scientist, Oak Ridge National Laboratory
  • Nina Lanza, Scientist, Los Alamos National Laboratory
  • Kelly Lively, Project Manager for the Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator, Idaho National Laboratory
  • Jackie Lopez-Barlow, Radio Isotopes Program Manager, Los Alamos National Laboratory
  • George Ulrich, Program Manager, Radioisotope Power Systems Program and Group Leader, Alloy Behavior and Design Group, Oak Ridge National Laboratory
  • Robert Wham, Program Manager, Pu-238 Supply Program, Oak Ridge National Laboratory
  • Roger Wiens, Scientist, Los Alamos National Laboratory

Information provided by 2003 WSGC Undergraduate Scholarship (University of Wisconsin-Madison) recipient:

Andrew Zillmer
Idaho National Laboratory 
Deputy Division Director
Space Nuclear Power and Isotope Technologies


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