Linda Spilker

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Linda Spilker
Linda Joyce Bies[1]

1955 (age 63–64)
ResidenceUnited States
Alma materCalifornia State University, Fullerton (B.A.),
California State University, Los Angeles (M.S.),
University of California, Los Angeles (Ph.D.)
AwardsNASA Exceptional Service Medal (2013)
NASA Group Achievement Awards (2011, 2009, 2000, 1998, 1982-1989)
NASA Scientific Achievement Award (1982)
Scientific career
FieldsPlanetary Science
InstitutionsJet Propulsion Laboratory
ThesisWave structure in planetary rings (1992)
Doctoral advisorChristopher T. Russell

Linda Spilker is an American planetary scientist who is the Cassini mission Project Scientist.[2][3][4][5][6] Her research interests include the evolution and dynamics of Saturn's rings.[7]


Spilker got a Physics from the California State University, Fullerton, in 1977 and an M.S. in Physics from the California State University, Los Angeles in 1983. She obtained a Ph.D. in Geophysics and Space Physics from the University of California, Los Angeles, in 1992. She joined the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in 1977, initially working on the Voyager missions that were launched the same year.[8] She became a Cassini mission scientist in 1990.[2] In 1997, she was the editor of a NASA publication that summarizes the mission's legacy.[9] Since 2010, she has been the Cassini mission project scientist, a role in which she directs the entire team's scientific investigations.[3][4][5][6][8]

Honors and awards[edit]

  • NASA Exceptional Service Medal (2013)[10][2]
  • NASA Group Achievement Award (2011, 2009, 2000, 1998, 1982-1989)[2]
  • NASA Scientific Achievement Award (1982)[2]


  1. ^ "Linda Spilker". IMDb.
  2. ^ a b c d e "Linda Spilker".
  3. ^ a b "NASA's Cassini Begins Its Final Mission Before Self-Destruction". April 5, 2017.
  4. ^ a b "NASA's Cassini Mission Conducts Daring Dive through Saturn's Rings". Scientific American. April 26, 2017.
  5. ^ a b "Saturn ruled this scientist's life for 40 years — here's why she needs NASA to go back after Cassini's death". Business Insider. September 17, 2017.
  6. ^ a b Kaplan, Sarah (September 14, 2017). "Cassini was the mission of a lifetime for this NASA scientist. Now she must say goodbye". Washington Post.
  7. ^ Meltzer, Michael (2015). The Cassini-Huygens Visit to Saturn: An Historic Mission to the Ringed Planet. Springer. p. 287. ISBN 3319076078.
  8. ^ a b "Linda Spilker, planetary scientist".
  9. ^ Spilker, Linda, ed. (1997). Passage to a ringed world : the Cassini-Huygens mission to Saturn and Titan (PDF). National Aeronautics and Space Administration SP-533.
  10. ^ "NASA Agency Honor Awards" (PDF). 2013. p. 25.