Andrew Jones

Freelance space journalist, SpaceNews and the Planetary Society

Andrew Jones is a freelance space journalist tracking China’s space industry and activities. He is a correspondent for SpaceNews, and his writing has appeared in NBC News,, IEEE Spectrum, Smithsonian Magazine, Sky & Telescope, Live Science, SupChina and more. He has also appeared on BBC radio and documentaries, ABC radio, and numerous space-focused podcasts including the Planetary Society’s Planetary Radio and Main Engine Cut Off.

Andrew is speaking at

Platform: Zoom webinar CASW New Horizons in Science
October 19, 2020
4:00 pm - 4:30 pm


  • Nina Lanza (Speaker) Team lead, Space and Planetary Exploration, Los Alamos National Laboratory
  • Katie Morgan (Speaker) Research scientist and Mars 2020 deputy project scientist, Jet Propulsion Laboratory
  • Andrew Jones (Speaker) Freelance space journalist, SpaceNews and the Planetary Society
  • W. Wayt Gibbs (Moderator) New Horizons in Science program director, CASW


Watch the prerecorded talks for this session beginning on Oct. 12. (Video embargoed until 4:00 p.m. ET 10/19/20.) Then tune in here on Oct. 19 for live Q&A with the speakers. (Whova mobile app users, look for the YouTube link in the session description.)
Three new spacecraft blasted off for Mars this summer. Their arrival in February 2021 will open a new chapter of exploration of the Red Planet and the investigations into its ability to support life past and future, via human missions.

In this session, we'll hear first-hand from scientists at NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab and Los Alamos National Lab who worked on the new Mars Perseverance rover mission about how it will gather soil and rock samples for eventual return to Earth, transform carbon dioxide it finds on the surface into breathable oxygen, attempt the first controlled aircraft flights on another planet, and rove around a dry lake bed zapping rocks with lasers to search for biosignatures of ancient Martian microbes.

We'll also get details on Tianwen-1 ("Questions to Heaven"), which is on course to be China's first successful mission to Mars. The spacecraft will deploy an orbiter, lander, and rover to scan the planet for buried deposits of frozen water while also mapping the structure of its interior and ionosphere.

Meanwhile, the United Arab Emirates' Hope mission will track winds, weather, and giant duststorms over a full cycle of Martian seasons. This session will prepare us to cover the many Mars stories to come in 2021.

Presented by:
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