HomeArtificial IntelligenceArtificial Intelligence NewsNASA is using AI to assist in its space missions

NASA is using AI to assist in its space missions

In a town hall meeting on Wednesday, NASA leadership praised the use of artificial intelligence (AI) while stressing that the technology will be used responsibly and will not take the place of the space agency’s highly qualified workers.

Administrator Bill Nelson stressed that “safety, transparency, and reliability” are the three main things he looks out for when integrating AI, as requested by the president.

A little more direct was Deputy Administrator Pam Melroy, who paraphrased Spider-Man to say, “With great power comes great responsibility.”


Participating in the town hall was David Salvagnini, who was appointed last month as the agency’s first chief AI officer. He explained how he saw his new position aligning with the agency’s current goals.

If NASA were a symphony, he added, I’m the conductor, harmonizing the many instruments and orchestra sections so that we’re all rowing in the same direction.

  • Among the duties he performs at work are:
  • Motivating NASA’s inventive use of AI.
  • Creating a governance framework to ensure ethical application of AI.
  • Supplying NASA staff with learning about artificial intelligence opportunities.


According to NASA Chief Scientist Katherine Calvin, AI is particularly adept at identifying abnormalities after a user teaches it what to look for. This can involve tasks like counting the amount of trees in a certain area or sifting through satellite imagery to locate and monitor smoke from wildfires.

According to the officials, AI is assuming routine, boring jobs in each instance to free up humans to work on more crucial projects.


It appeared that one of NASA’s main takeaways for the workforce was that the algorithms aren’t replacing them. Officials emphasized that although AI is not perfect, it would be utilized in conjunction with humans rather than taking the place of the labor force.

According to Salvagnini, “We’re not outsourcing our thinking to the AI.”

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