NASA Recognizes Women Leaders of SOFIA Including USRA's Margaret Meixner and USRA Alum Hina Kazmi
Columbia, MD--June 24, 2020. The leadership team of NASA’s airborne telescope, the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy, or SOFIA, includes five accomplished women who are making waves in space science and engineering. These women who are from different backgrounds bring unique perspectives to the task of making this complex international science experiment a success. Among them is Universities Space Research Association’s Margaret Meixner and a USRA alumnus, Hina Kazmi.
The observatory, which is a Boeing 747SP jetliner modified to carry a 106-inch diameter telescope, looks out at the universe in a special kind of light called infrared, which is invisible to human eyes. SOFIA can look at distant objects in a part of the infrared spectrum that is inaccessible to any other telescope currently in flight, seeking answers to mysteries about how stars form, the black hole at the center of our galaxy, and more.
SOFIA’s leadership team includes: Hina Kazmi, project manager based at NASA Ames Research Center in California’s Silicon Valley; Pat Knezek, program scientist at NASA Headquarters in Washington; Margaret Meixner, director of SOFIA Science Mission Operations at Universities Space Research Association (USRA); Alessandra Roy, science manager at the German Aerospace Center (DLR) in Bonn, Germany, and Naseem Rangwala, project scientist at NASA Ames.
All these women were interviewed by NASA in a Question and Answer session where they addressed a variety of questions such as why they went into the field of science and engineering, the path that led them to work on SOFIA, the scientific questions they are interested in, whether they felt uncomfortable being a woman in science and engineering and finally, what advice would they give to young people who want to follow a career like theirs.
For more information please see: https://www.nasa.gov/feature/sofia-women-leaders-reflect-on-science-engineering-careers