Huntsville native to manage lander program to send humans back to moon

Huntsville native to manage lander program to send humans back to moon
Lisa Watson-Morgan (Source: NASA)

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - A 30-year NASA veteran engineer and manager at Marshall Space Flight Center will play a key role in sending humans back to the moon.

Dr. Lisa Watson-Morgan has been named program manager for NASA’s Human Landing System, tasked with rapid development of the lander that will safely carry the first woman and the next man to the moon’s surface in 2024.

NASA says that voyage is a “critical milestone" in NASA’s new Artemis Program and will pave the way for a long-term human presence on the moon by 2028.

Watson-Morgan, a Huntsville native, previously served as deputy director of the Engineering Directorate at the Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville.

“Lisa’s appointment to this key role not only reflects NASA’s confidence in her visionary leadership, but confidence in the proven expertise and world-class capability that define Marshall’s contributions to safely landing humans on the Moon and launching complex spacecraft to the Moon and Mars,” said Marshall director Jody Singer.

As program manager, Watson-Morgan will oversee testing of landing systems working with U.S. industry to develop, integrate and conduct crewed demonstrations. She will further manage lunar landing system integration with the Orion deep space crew vehicle, to be launched by the Space Launch System, that will carry Artemis explorers to and from the Gateway lunar orbital platform. From the Gateway, explorers will board the lunar landing system for missions to the surface of the moon.

The goal is to deliver a landing system to sustainably ferry astronauts and technology demonstrators to and from the surface, yielding new science and material resources, and leveraging the moon as a proving ground for future Mars missions.

For more information about Artemis and NASA’s goals to return to the moon and journey on to Mars, click here.

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