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Ashley Stroupe


4800 Oak Grove Drive
M/S 198-138

Pasadena, CA 91109





Ashley W. Stroupe, PhD

Member of Engineering Staff


Dr. Stroupe has been Engineer at JPL since December 2003. She works in flight operations for the Curiosity Rover (Mars Science Laboratory) in multiple roles. She is the Team Lead for the MSL Rover Drivers (controlling mobility and the arm), and also does the roles of Tactical Uplink Lead (managing the uplink process) and Engineering Uplink Lead/Tactical Downlink Lead (coordinating telemetry analysis and representing of the engineering team on planning). She previously worked with the Mars Exploration Rovers, Spirit and Opportunity, also as a Rover Driver and doing long-term planning for rover traverse. Her previous research focuses on multi-robot teams in complex environments and behavior-based control, with applications to exploration and mapping, dynamic target observation, and cooperative manipulation. In her personal life, Dr. Stroupe participates broadly in community activities such as outreach and education and has published multiple conference papers, book chapters, and journal articles in robotics. She recently appeared in "Goodnight Oppy" on Amazon and previous appeared on "Five Years on Mars" on the National Geographic Channel.


Ph.D. Robotics, Carnegie Mellon University
Advisor: Dr. Tucker Balch, Georgia Tech
August 2003

M.S. Robotics, Carnegie Mellon University
Advisor: Dr. Tucker Balch
December 2001

M.S. Electrical and Computer Engineering, George Mason University
Advisor: Dr. Gerald Cook
May 1998

B.S. Physics, Harvey Mudd College
Concentrations in Astrophysics and Anthropology
May 1990

Professional Experience

Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Mars Science Laboratory
Rover Planner Team Lead 2/2013-Present. Commanding mobility and arm.
Engineering Uplink Lead/Tactical Downlink Lead (6/2022-Present). Engineering representative on uplink planning
Tactical Uplink Lead 2017-present. Managing the uplink planning process
Previous roles: Supratactical Uplink Lead (pre-planning for uplink), Science Planner and Sequence Integration Engineer (integrated modeling of activities and sequences).

Mars Exploration Rovers Engineering Team
8/2005-Present. Rover Planning, development and delivery of sequences for rover mobility and robotic arm operations. Long-distance traverse planning.
10/2004-Present. Mobility / manipulation command sequences and performance analysis.

Arctic Mars Analgo Svalbard Expedition 2/2006-Present. Rover-based astrobiology. A three-robot cliff-climbing system for sample collection/return and in-situ astrobiology observations.

Wide Area Prospecting JPL Software Lead 2/2005 - Present.
Autonomous coordinated multi-robot teams for planetary exploration.

Single Command Approach and Instrument Placement 9/2004-Present.
Autonomous software for approach to a target and instrument placement at the target.

Robotic Construction Crew Project Technical Lead 12/2003-3/2005.
Autonomous software for multi-robot construction tasks including cooperative transport and cooperative precision manipulation.

Robotics Institute, Carnegie Mellon University

Mobile Autonomous Robot Software Project 1/2000-8/2003.
Design, development, and testing of behavior-based execution for robot teams, using models of teammates and performance to improve teamwork, for cooperative mapping and tracking.

The Minnow Project 1/2000-8/2003.
Design, development, and testing of robot localization, multi-platform data fusion, and behaviors for dynamic environments for the robot soccer domain.

Lunar Ice Discovery Initiative 8/1998-12/1999.
Design of a scientific instrument package and mobile robot for Lunar water detection.

Research Interests

Planetary Rovers
Behavior-based autonomy
Collaborative multi-robot systems
Engineering and science education


  1. Ashley Stroupe, Terry Huntsberger, Michael Garrett, Paulo Younse, Damion Dunlap, Lee Magnone, "Rover-Based Planetary Science on Steep Slopes," Proceedings of iSAIRAS 2008, 17 September 2020.
  1. A. Stroupe, T. Huntsberger, A. Okon, H. Aghazarian, and M. Robinson, "Behavior-Based Multi-Robot Collaboration for Autonomous Construction Tasks," Proceedings of IROS 2005, 01 January 2005.