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I have been at NASA Ames Research Center since 1987, working in the mobile planetary robotics field since 1995. I served as a Deputy Group Lead for the Intelligent Robotics Group (IRG) from 2005 to 2019, and became the Group Lead in November of 2019.


I have managed projects for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate, Exploration Systems Mission Directorate, Office of the Chief Technologist, and Space Technology Mission Directorate including:

  • Mars Technology Program’s ARC Rover Testbed project
  • Integrating and demonstrating multiple Mars Instrument Development Program instruments on the K9 and K10 planetary rovers
  • Exploration Technology Development Program's Human-Robot Site Survey project
  • Surface Telerobotics as part of the Human Exploration Telerobotics (HET) Project
  • Astrobee and Human Exploration Telerobotics 2 (HET 2) Project

Professional interests

  • Visual navigation
  • User interfaces
  • Field testing of mobile robots
  • Robot mission operations


BS EE Stanford University
MS EE, emphasis Controls Santa Clara University

Maria Bualat
Intelligent Systems Division
NASA Ames Research Center
Mail Stop 269-3
Moffett Field, CA 94035

Phone: 650-604-4250

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