Firouz Naderi, NASA official who put rovers on Mars, dies.

Firouz Naderi, a NASA official who oversaw the successful landing of two exploration rovers on Mars, a feat that vastly expanded human understanding of the Red Planet and made him a hero to fellow Iranian Americans, died June 9 at 77.

His death was announced on his social media pages. Dr. Naderi posted on Facebook last month that he had suffered a fall that left him paralyzed from the neck down. Other details were not immediately available.

Dr. Naderi, who was trained as an electrical engineer, left his native Iran in the wake of the Islamic revolution of 1979 and was hired later that year by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in California.

Over nearly four decades, he emerged as a linchpin of the laboratory’s missions, particularly the landing of the Spirit and Opportunity rovers on Mars in 2004, one of NASA’s most momentous achievements in recent decades.

Source: www.washingtonpost.com


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