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U.S. Embassy in Peru celebrates NASA's rover landing with photo of Peruvian engineers

Photo: U.S. Embassy in Peru

Photo: U.S. Embassy in Peru

09:27 | Lima, Feb. 19.

The U.S. Embassy in Peru celebrated the feat of NASA and its "Perseverance" rover that on Thursday landed on the surface of Mars, with the photograph of two Peruvian scientists —who have worked at the space agency for some years— carrying the national flag.

These scientists are Rosa Avalos and Melissa Soriano, two engineers who are part of the work team that took this robot to the Martian surface in search of extraterrestrial life.

Perseverance is the largest and most expensive extraterrestrial exploration vehicle ever built.

"Touchdown confirmed! Perseverance is already on Martian soil and sending images back to Earth," said a Tweet by the U.S. Embassy in Peru.

"The picture shows Peruvian-American engineers Rosa Avalos and Melissa Soriano proudly display the Peruvian flag. The latter is part of the Mars 2020 mission #JuntosPerseveramos (Together We Persevere)," the publication reads.

Peruvians

Rosa Avalos is the first Peruvian and Latin American to graduate —at 23 years of age— as an aerospace engineer from Virginia Tech, which allowed her to be summoned by NASA in May 2012.

Given that she got excellent grades at this university, thus becoming the valedictorian, Avalos gave the speech at graduation before Michelle Obama, who was the commencement speaker.

For her part, 31-year-old Melissa Soriano is part of the team of professionals who worked on the mission to put NASA's well-known rover "Curiosity" on Mars in August 2012, which explores the surface of said planet. 

She was educated entirely in the United States and trained as an engineer at one of the most prestigious scientific institutes in the world, the California Institute of Technology (Caltech).

Soriano earned three academic degrees from this institution: electrical engineer, electronics engineer, and economist. Additionally, she earned her PhD in Earth Systems and Geoinformation Sciences from George Mason University.

(END) LIQ/RMB/MVB

Published: 2/19/2021
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