Margarita Marinova

Senior Engineer and Planetary Scientist

Role: Associate

Sites: CDL-Atlanta, CDL-Oxford, CDL-Paris, CDL-Toronto

Stream: Space

Dr. Margarita Marinova is passionate about space and planetary exploration and human missions to Mars, from both the science and engineering perspectives. She has worked to leverage science and technology to further humanity’s reach into our Solar System, improve launch vehicle capabilities and reusability, gain deeper understanding of the Earth and its planetary neighbors, and apply these advancements to improve life on Earth.

Dr. Marinova received her BSc in Aerospace Engineering from MIT, and a PhD in Planetary Sciences from Caltech. She has worked at Airbus Space Propulsion in engine nozzle research and development, and NASA Ames Research Center as a planetary scientist studying Mars analogue environments. She was at SpaceX from 2013-2020, where she held positions of propulsion systems responsible engineer, vehicle responsible engineer and senior Mars development engineer, and worked on project including the vertical takeoff and landing F9R-Dev vehicle, Falcon 9 Full Thrust development, reusability, and Starship vehicle design and mission architectures. Margarita has been on the Committee for Planetary Protection for National Academy of Sciences since 2020. In 2021-2022, she was the Integration and Test Sr. Manager for Amazon’s Project Kuiper. She’s continuing to focus on a variety of projects in aerospace engineering and planetary exploration as an independent consultant.