SAO scientist Justin Kasper is one of three recipients of the second annual Smithsonian Institution Secretary’s Awards for Excellence. This yearly award recognizes individuals for their special achievements in collaboration, innovation and spirit.
Justin Kasper received the Innovative Spirit Award because of his creativity, confidence and ingenuity in creating Solar Probe, a spacecraft designed to enter the atmosphere of our Sun, withstand a direct view of it and scoop up material during the solar encounters. His innovation, creativity and determination allowed him to reach beyond the goals of the funder and his competitors—in record time, Justin assembled an expert team of 60 theorists and experimentalists and secured a $67 million grant for the project. As one leader in the field proclaimed, “This young scientist from the Smithsonian has plucked the crown jewel of heliophysics for the next 20 years from our hands.”
More information about Kasper and his research can be found here.