Luis Velasco, senior mechanical engineer for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Orange County, Calif., will be speaking on “Mars 2020,” the upcoming Mars rover mission by NASA’s Mars Exploration Program, scheduled to launch in the summer of 2020. His lecture is titled, “NASA’s Mars 2020: Entry, Descent and Landing – 7 Minutes of Terror.” The public is invited.

Velasco has been with NASA for more than 15 years, first as a software engineer in Spacecraft Mechanical Design before becoming senior mechanical engineer for the Spacecraft Engineering Design Group. He works on mechanical design for the Mars 2020 project. He also was founder of the investment firm, Hispanic Business World, Inc.

Before and after the lecture, the University of Utah College of Engineering will have its Discover Engineering kiosks on display as well as an interactive display from the U’s Scientific Computing and Imaging Institute. Members of the Utah Student Robotics team will also be demonstrating their mining robot, which has competed in NASA’s annual Robotic Mining Challenge.

The lecture is sponsored by the U student chapters of the Society of Women Engineers, Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers, and the American Indian Science and Engineering Society.

When: Saturday, Sept. 28, 2017, 9 a.m.

Where: James L. Sorenson Molecular Biotechnology Building, 36 S Wasatch Drive, Salt Lake City, Utah, main auditorium, Room #2650. Free parking is available across the street, east of the building.


9 to 9:30 a.m. — Check in and displays open

9:30 to 10:30 a.m. — Lecture

10:30 to 11 a.m. — Light refreshments and displays open

Mars Rover Lecture Flyer