Artist Concept of NASA's Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN)
This image shows an artist concept of NASA's Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) mission.
Credit: NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center
Media representatives are invited to NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center Visitor Center on Sept. 21 from 8:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. EDT, for local coverage and interviews of the orbit insertion countdown activities for the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution, or MAVEN, mission.

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

Speakers during the event will include:
- Roger Gibbs, deputy manager for NASA's Mars exploration program, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California
- Sandra Cauffman, MAVEN deputy project manager, Goddard
- Paul Mahaffy, instrument lead for MAVEN's Neutral Gas and Ion Mass Spectrometer, Goddard
- Jack Connerney, instrument lead for MAVEN's magnetometer, Goddard

Media representatives interested in attending should RSVP Elizabeth Zubritsky by phone (301-614-5438) or email (, by noon on Friday, Sept. 19.

NASA Television coverage of the MAVEN orbit insertion will begin at 9:30 p.m. EDT and conclude at 10:45 p.m. on Sept. 21. A post-orbit insertion news conference is targeted for about two hours after orbital insertion.

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, as well as education and public outreach, for the mission.

NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, 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:

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

For directions to NASA Goddard's Visitor Center, visit:

Elizabeth Zubritsky
NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland

Lynn Chandler
​NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland