Mars Pathfinder mission

1998 international project of the year

The Mars Pathfinder project stands as a paradigm of the ultimate project management goal: better, faster, cheaper. This article discusses the project management techniques used by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), a division of the California Institute of Technology; by using these techniques, JPL designed and built a space vehicle capable of collecting data and performing experiments. Working for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA) Office of Space Science, JPL realized this complex project on a tight US$150 million budget and within an aggressive three-year timeline. The article explains the cooperative atmosphere that evolved between the stakeholders, a relationship that generated clearly defined project objectives and minimized conventional bureaucratic measures. A sidebar outlines the scientific findings of Mars that this vehicle enabled NASA to obtain, findings that have advanced human understanding of the red planet.
registered user content locked

Log in or join PMI to gain access

or Account Registration



Related Content


Publishing or acceptance of an advertisement is neither a guarantee nor endorsement of the advertiser's product or service. View advertising policy.