• Mohamed Abid

    Mohamed Abid

    SMAP Mission Chief Engineer

    Dr. Mohamed Abid is the Deputy Flight System System Engineer (FSSE) Manager for the SMAP project. Dr. Abid is also the SMAP Mission Chief Engineer. Prior to his assignment on the SMAP project, he w... more
    Dr. Mohamed Abid is the Deputy Flight System System Engineer (FSSE) Manager for the SMAP project. Dr. Abid is also the SMAP Mission Chief Engineer. Prior to his assignment on the SMAP project, he was the FSSE lead for the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer mission (WISE) that was successfully launched in December, 2009. Dr. Abid was the project System Engineer for the Ocean Surface Topography mission (OSTM) that was successfully launched in June, 2008. Dr. Abid received the NASA Honor Exceptional Achievement Medal for his work on OSTM. Before joining JPL, he was Co-PI on the FIVE Project as part of space flight experiment, and an Associate Investigator / Test Conductor on the Structure of Flame Ball at Low Lewis number (SOFBALL) experiment which flew on Space Shuttle missions Columbia STS-83 (launched in April 1997), Columbia STS-94 (launched in May 1997) and Columbia STS-107 (launched in January 2003). Dr. Abid is a lecturer in the Astronautics department at the University of Southern California (USC), and the author of the textbook "Spacecraft Sensors", a John Wiley & Sons publication. Dr. Abid holds a BS in Physics, an MS from Ecole Doctorale de l'Ecole Polytechnique, and a Ph.D. in Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering from USC. less
  • Gun-Shing Chen

    Gun-Shing Chen

    Flight System Manager

    Dr. Gun-Shing Chen is the Flight System Manager for the SMAP Project. He is responsible for the overall technical and managerial leadership for the design, development, fabrication, and integration... more
    Dr. Gun-Shing Chen is the Flight System Manager for the SMAP Project. He is responsible for the overall technical and managerial leadership for the design, development, fabrication, and integration and test of the SMAP spacecraft system. Gun-Shing received the B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering from Cheng-Kung University, Taiwan, in 1977 and the M.S. degree in Aerospace Engineering from University of Texas at Austin in 1981. After receiving the Sc.D degree in Aeronautics and Astronautics from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1986, he joined JPL Structures and Dynamics Research Group. Initially his primary interest was in developing active and passive vibration control for large space structures. Since then, he has broadened his interest and career in the multi-discipline system design for science payloads and flight projects, and has served leadership positions in line and project organizations, including Group Supervisor, Section Manager, Assistant Division Manager in the Mechanical System Division, Chief Engineer and Assistant Division Manager in the Instruments and Science Data Systems Division, Mechanical Project Element Manager (PEM) for the Deep Space-1/Miniature Imaging Camera and Spectrometer (MICAS) and EOS Microwave Limb Sounder (MLS) Instrument Projects, Deputy Mechanical PEM for the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) Project, Instrument Manager for the Active Mirror Telescope (AMT) Project, and Deputy Instrument Manager for the Space Interferometer Mission-Planet Quest (SIM-PQ) Project. Dr. Chen is a Principal in JPL since 1998, and was awarded the NASA Exceptional Service Medal in 2004 and the NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal in 2005. less
  • Wendy Edelstein

    Wendy Edelstein

    Instrument Manager

    Wendy Edelstein is the SMAP Instrument Manager. She is responsible for the design and implementation of the integrated SMAP Instrument including the Radar Electronics, the Radiometer Electronics, t... more
    Wendy Edelstein is the SMAP Instrument Manager. She is responsible for the design and implementation of the integrated SMAP Instrument including the Radar Electronics, the Radiometer Electronics, the shared Antenna Subsystem and the associated Mechanical and Thermal Subsystem. She has been a member of the JPL technical staff since 1988. Prior to SMAP, she was the Deputy Section Manager of the Radar Science & Engineering Section from 2004 to 2008 where she was involved in the planning, execution and implementation of a number of flight radar missions including Aquarius, Phoenix Landing Radar and the Mars Science Laboratory Terminal Descent Sensor. She was a group supervisor for the Advanced Radar Technology Group from 1998 to 2004 where she was active in defining the vision and roadmaps of NASA’s Earth Science radar missions and associated radar technology program. As a radar technologist from 1995 to 2006, her primary research interests included Transmit/Receive (T/R) modules, RF component miniaturization and lightweight antenna technologies. She spent her early career at JPL as an RF design engineer and I&T lead on the Shuttle Imaging Radar-C (SIR-C) project. She received her B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering with minor in Applied Mathematics from the University of California, San Diego in 1988. Wendy is married and has 3 children which keeps her busy outside of work with school and extra-curricular activities. less
  • Shawn Goodman

    Shawn Goodman

    Project System Engineer

    Shawn Goodman is currently the Project System Engineer (PSE) and Engineering Technical Authority (ETA) for the Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) mission. Shawn's JPL career started in 1991 wh... more

    Shawn Goodman is currently the Project System Engineer (PSE) and Engineering Technical Authority (ETA) for the Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) mission. Shawn's JPL career started in 1991 when he worked as the mass properties engineer for the MSTI project. Since then he has gained extensive experience in flight projects and line management. Shawn has worked all stages of the project lifecycle through projects like MSTI, Sojourner, MGS, SIR-C, DS1, X2000, OPSP, MER and MSL. He has held the position of Group Supervisor, Deputy Section manager and Section manager of the Spacecraft Mechanical Engineering Section, Section 352. Shawn obtained his MS in Mechanical Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. After completing a basic degree in mechanical engineering he focused on mechanical design and robotics.

    In his current role, Shawn reports programmatically to the Kent Kellogg (the SMAP Project Manager) and administratively to Division 31 as a member of Division 31 Staff. As the project matures Shawn will report to the JPL Office of Chief Engineer(OCE). Shawn's commitment to the development of both personnel and institutional capabilities make him a tremendous asset on the SMAP project and division 31 leadership staff.

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  • Ben Jai

    Ben Jai

    Mission System Manager

    Benhan Jai is the Mission Systems Manager of the Soil Moisture Active and Passive Project (SMAP). He is responsible for the overall ground aspect of the mission: interfacing with GSFC in space and ... more
    Benhan Jai is the Mission Systems Manager of the Soil Moisture Active and Passive Project (SMAP). He is responsible for the overall ground aspect of the mission: interfacing with GSFC in space and ground antennas, data systems, and data archival and distribution organizations. Jai received his Masters degree in Computer Engineering from the University of Southern California. Since joining JPL in 1985, he has served in a number of engineering and management roles involving ground data system development, mission operations system development, and mission management at JPL. His previous assignments have included the development of the Ground Data System and the Mission Operations System on many missions including NASA Scatterometer, SeaWinds, Mars Global Surveyor, Stardust, Mars Odyssey, and Mars Surveyor Operations Projects. He has held positions as Data System Engineer, Ground Data System Manager, Mission Operations Manager, and Mission Manager. Prior to joining SMAP, Ben led the development of mission operations and ground data systems of the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Project (MRO), and led the entire flight teams of the MRO through launch, cruise, MOI, and aerobraking to the completion of the primary science phase of the mission. In addition to his SMAP activities, he is the Mission Systems Lead for DESDynI pre-project. He was awarded the NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal in 2007. less
  • Kent Kellogg

    Kent Kellogg

    Project Manager

    Kent Kellogg is the project manager for the NASA-directed Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) mission and is responsible and accountable for all aspects of mission success. Mr. Kellogg joined JPL i... more
    Kent Kellogg is the project manager for the NASA-directed Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) mission and is responsible and accountable for all aspects of mission success. Mr. Kellogg joined JPL in 1983 and has served in a number of engineering and management roles involving flight system engineering, space hardware development, contract management and organizational management at JPL. His previous assignments have included managing JPL’s Communication, Tracking and Radar Division, managing JPL’s Spacecraft Telecommunications Equipment Section, managing the SeaWinds and QuikSCAT Projects (he was successively the Instrument Manager, Deputy Project Manager and Project Manager for JPL’s SeaWinds-on -ADEOS-II and QuikSCAT Projects) and supervising JPL’s Spacecraft Antenna Group. He’s received NASA’s Exceptional Achievement Medal three times for his work on the NASA Scatterometer antenna subsystem (1997), for leadership in the SeaWinds instrument development and delivery for QuikScat (2000) and outstanding technical leadership of the SeaWinds project (2004). His technical expertise is in flight system engineering, deep space communications and tracking, instrument system development and implementation, and antennas and electromagnetics. He has participated in all mission phases (formulation through mission operations) for both Earth science and deep space missions. Mr. Kellogg has B.S. in Electronic Engineering from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. In his spare time, Mr. Kellogg enjoys fishing the creeks in the eastern side of the Sierra Nevada mountain range of California, ham radio, historical reading and travel. less
  • Jennifer Kovacev

    Jennifer Kovacev

    Project Business Manager

    Jennifer Kovacev is the SMAP Project Business Manager. She is responsible for overall leadership of project business functions and processes including finance, scheduling, cost estimation, performa... more
    Jennifer Kovacev is the SMAP Project Business Manager. She is responsible for overall leadership of project business functions and processes including finance, scheduling, cost estimation, performance measurement, subcontracts and other procurements. Jennifer received a B.S. in Business Administration with an emphasis in Finance from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. She has been with JPL since 1995, beginning her career in Task Order Administration within the Contracts Management Office. In 1999 Jennifer joined the Project Resource Controls Section and has been a Resource Analyst in both the Earth Science and Mars Directorates supporting flight projects including MISR, Scatterometer Projects, MRO and MSL. Jennifer was the Mars Directorate PRA group supervisor prior to joining SMAP. less
  • Peggy O'Neill

    Peggy O'Neill

    Deputy Project Scientist

    Peggy E. O’Neill received her B.S. degree summa cum laude with University Honors in geography from Northern Illinois University in 1976, her M.A. degree in geography from the University of Californ... more
    Peggy E. O’Neill received her B.S. degree summa cum laude with University Honors in geography from Northern Illinois University in 1976, her M.A. degree in geography from the University of California at Santa Barbara in 1979, and has done post-graduate work in civil and environmental engineering through Cornell University. Since 1980 she has been employed as a Physical Scientist in the Hydrological Sciences Branch at NASA / Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, MD where she conducts research in soil moisture retrieval and land surface hydrology, primarily through microwave remote sensing techniques. She is currently the SMAP Deputy Project Scientist. less
  • Sam Thurman

    Sam Thurman

    Deputy Project Manager

    Sam Thurman serves as the SMAP Deputy Project Manager and Flight System Manager, supporting the Project Manager while focusing on the integration of the Instrument and Spacecraft System development... more

    Sam Thurman serves as the SMAP Deputy Project Manager and Flight System Manager, supporting the Project Manager while focusing on the integration of the Instrument and Spacecraft System development work along with the Launch Vehicle System. Prior to joining SMAP, he was Deputy Manager of JPL’s Autonomous Systems Division, supporting space missions as the Dawn mission to the asteroid belt, the Phoenix Mars Lander, the Mars Science Laboratory, and the Cassini mission to Saturn. Before coming to the Autonomous Systems Division, he spent ten years in the Mars Exploration Program, where he held a series of systems engineering and management positions in several flight projects. Before joining JPL, he worked as a missile guidance analyst at the Charles Stark Draper Laboratory in Cambridge, Massachusetts. His formal education includes B.S., S.M., and Ph.D degrees in Aerospace Engineering from Purdue University (1983), Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1985), and the University of Southern California (1995).

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  • Mark Underwood

    Mark Underwood

    Mission Assurance Manager

    Mark Underwood is the SMAP Mission Assurance Manager. He is responsible for managing the safety and mission assurance program for the project. This program included systems safety, EEE parts, env... more
    Mark Underwood is the SMAP Mission Assurance Manager. He is responsible for managing the safety and mission assurance program for the project. This program included systems safety, EEE parts, environments, reliability, software qualify assurance, and hardware quality assurance. Mark earned a B.S. Engineering from UCLA in 1981 and Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering at the University of Pennsylvania in 1987. He has been with JPL since completing graduate school in April 1987. His initial work at JPL included research on novel electrochemical power sources, and later he developed concepts for spacecraft electrical power systems. As a researcher, Mark published more than 44 articles in journals and conference proceedings. He served in line management as Group Supervisor for the Power Electronics and Systems Group and Deputy Manager and Manger of the Power Systems Section. In 2007, Mark moved to Mission Assurance as the Deputy Mission Assurance Manager for the Juno project. He moved to SMAP as the Mission Assurance Manager in February 2009. less
  • Simon Yueh

    Simon Yueh

    Project Scientist

    Simon H. Yueh received the Ph.D. degree in Electrical Engineering in January 1991 from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He was a postdoctoral research associate at the Massachusetts Insti... more
    Simon H. Yueh received the Ph.D. degree in Electrical Engineering in January 1991 from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He was a postdoctoral research associate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology from February to August 1991. In September 1991, he joined the Radar Science and Engineering Section at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). He was the supervisor of radar system engineering and algorithm development group from 2002-2007. He was the deputy manager of Climate, Oceans and Solid Earth section from 2007 to 2009, and the section manager from 2009 to 2013. He served as the Project Scientist of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Aquarius mission from January 2012 to September 2013, the Deputy Project Scientist of NASA Soil Moisture Active Passive Mission from Jan 2013 to September 2013, and the SMAP Project Scientist since October 2013. He has been the Principal/Co-Investigator of numerous NASA and DOD research projects on remote sensing of soil moisture, terrestrial snow, ocean salinity and ocean wind. He has authored four book chapters and published more than 150 publications and presentations. He received the IEEE GRSS Transaction Prize Paper award in 1995, 2002, 2010 and 2014. He also received the 2000 Best Paper Award in the IEEE International Geoscience and Remote Symposium. He received the JPL Lew Allen Award in 1998 and Ed Stone Award in 2003. He receives the NASA Exceptional Technology Achievement Medal in 2014. He is an associate editor of IEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing and is the Fellow of IEEE. less

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