A mission from the US space agency NASA led by Moroccan Kamal Oudghiri recently won a prestigious award in the field of advanced space science and technology.
The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) awarded its prestigious prize in the field of space sciences to the mission of the Cold Atom Lab led by the Moroccan scientist.
Oudghiri told MAP that the Cold Atom Lab team won the 2020 Space Science Prize awarded by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics “because they were successful in developing and delivering this innovative laboratory at the International Space Agency and also for its fundamental scientific achievements. ”
Oudghiri, Project and Mission Leader, congratulated all who helped design, build and successfully operate the first quantum physics laboratory in space.
He added, “Cold Atom Lab has been successful through teamwork and the excellent commitment of all involved in the goal of strengthening the sciences that expand our understanding of the Earth and the universe around us.”
Indeed, Cold Atom Lab has been operating from its site in the International Space Station since July 2018. It cools atoms to almost absolute zero, minus 459 degrees Fahrenheit, colder than any other known location in the natural universe. .
The Moroccan scientist clarified that “experiments carried out in such extreme degrees help us to understand how our world works at the smallest scale.”
Atom Lab is a multi-specialty organization, including a scientific team of three Nobel Prize winners.
The awards given by the IAEA reflect its commitment to celebrating science professionals, their achievements, innovations and discoveries that “make the world safer, more connected, more accessible and more prosperous.”
It should be noted that Kamal Oudghiri has already led several space missions, in particular those relating to the discovery equipment of the planet Mars “Curiosity”, “Rovers”, “Spirit” and “Opportunity” as well as the international mission “Cassini” for Saturn , “Grail” for the moon and “Juno” for Jupiter.
This new distinction is in addition to several others received by Oudghiri, including the prestigious Medal for Outstanding Service awarded to him by NASA in recognition of his continued achievements and numerous contributions to Pioneer Agency projects and programs in the field of space discoveries.