Johns Hopkins APL Space Scientist Denevi Earns NASA Solar System Exploration Award

NASA’s Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI) presented its Angioletta Coradini Award to Brett Denevi, a planetary geologist at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) in Laurel, Maryland.

One of four annual SSERVI science awards, the Angioletta Coradini Award honors a mid-career scientist for broad and lasting accomplishments in a SSERVI research field. Its namesake was an Italian planetary scientist who, through four decades of work on missions from the Moon to asteroids to Jupiter to Saturn, inspired astronomers worldwide.

“I’m so honored to receive this award, especially at such an exciting time for exploration of the Moon,” Denevi said. “I love working to help advance the science that supports exploration and the science that comes from exploration, and I hope I can keep doing that throughout my career.”

Denevi specializes in studies of the Moon, Mercury and asteroids. She has worked on NASA and international missions and projects to explore those worlds, including the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (on which she serves as deputy principal investigator for the LRO Camera), MESSENGER, Dawn, the Korean Pathfinder Lunar Orbiter, and payloads for two upcoming lunar landers (Lunar Vertex and Lunar Vulkan Imaging and Spectroscopy Explorer).

She was also a member of the steering group of the Planetary Science and Astrobiology Decadal Survey, which developed a comprehensive 10-year space research strategy, and served as the vice chair of the survey’s panel on the Moon and Mercury. Earlier this year, NASA tapped Denevi to lead the Earth-based geology science team for its Artemis III crewed lunar mission.

Denevi received the Coradini Award on July 19 during the NASA Exploration Science Forum in College Park, Maryland. The award was the latest recognition in a career that includes the Maryland Academy of Science’s Outstanding Young Scientist award, a NASA early-career fellowship, seven NASA group achievement awards, and an asteroid, 9026 Denevi, named in her honor.