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NASA to hold Sept. 17 Briefing on MAVEN Mars Orbit Insertion, Events Coverage

NASA will host a televised media briefing at 1 p.m. EDT, Wednesday, Sept. 17, to outline activities around the Sunday, Sept. 21 orbital insertion at Mars of the agency’s Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) spacecraft. The briefing will be held in NASA’s Headquarters’ auditorium, 300 E Street SW in Washington, and broadcast live on NASA Television and the agency’s website.

MAVEN is the first spacecraft dedicated to exploring the upper atmosphere of Mars. The mission’s goal is to determine how the loss of atmospheric gas to space played a role in changing the Martian climate through time.

Panelists include:
— Lisa May, lead program executive, Mars Exploration Program, NASA Headquarters, Washington
–Bruce Jakosky, MAVEN principal investigator, Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics, University of Colorado, Boulder
–David Mitchell, MAVEN project manager, NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland
— Guy Beutelschies, Lockheed Martin MAVEN program manager, Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company, Littleton, Colorado

Media can ask questions from participating NASA locations, or by telephone. To participate by phone, reporters must contact Dwayne Brown at 202-358-1726 or and provide their media affiliation by noon Wednesday. The public also may ask questions on social media using the hashtag #askNASA.

NASA Television Orbit Insertion Coverage

NASA Television coverage of the MAVEN orbit insertion begins at 9:30 p.m. EDT and concludes at 10:45 p.m. on Sept. 21. The orbital insertion is targeted to begin at 9:37 p.m. The program will be carried on NTV-1 (Public) and NTV-2 (Education). A clean feed for media will be carried on NTV-3 (Media Channel). The media feed will contain views of the MAVEN Mission Support Area only, without graphics or interviews.

A post-orbit insertion news conference is targeted for about two hours after orbital insertion.

For NASA Television downlink information, scheduling information and streaming video, visit:

Media Accreditation

Media are invited to attend the orbit insertion event Sept 21 at Lockheed Martin Space Systems in Littleton, Colorado. Attending media must be U.S. citizens and bring government-issued photo identification. For accreditation, contact Gary Napier, 303-971-4012, by 5 p.m. MDT Thursday, Sept. 18.

Social Media

Members of the public are invited to follow the day-long NASA Social event on Sept. 21 by following the hashtags #MAVEN and #JourneytoMars on social media channels such as Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and others. Twitter postings throughout the day will come from official accounts @NASA, @MAVEN2Mars and @NASASocial.

MAVEN’s principal investigator is based at the Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics at University of Colorado, Boulder. The university provided two science instruments and leads science operations and education and public outreach for the mission.

Goddard manages the project and provided two of the science instruments for the mission. Lockheed Martin built the spacecraft and is responsible for mission operations. The University of California at Berkeley’s Space Sciences Laboratory provided four science instruments for the mission. NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California provides navigation support, Deep Space Network support, and Electra telecommunications relay hardware and operations.

For more about the MAVEN mission, visit:


Dwayne Brown
Headquarters, Washington
Nancy Neal-Jones/Elizabeth Zubritsky
Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland
301-286-0039/301-614-5438 /