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NASA Appoints New Chief for Artificial Intelligence

NASA has given a new role to David Salvagnini as the agency’s Chief Artificial Intelligence (AI) Officer. This is an addition to his current job as Chief Data Officer. The appointment shows NASA’s commitment to using AI technology responsibly.

AI Helps NASA’s Missions

NASA has been using different AI tools for a long time to support its missions and research projects. AI helps analyze data, find patterns, and develop systems that can work on their own to control spacecraft and aircraft.

NASA Administrator Bill Nelson said, “AI has been used safely at NASA for decades, and as it grows, it can speed up discoveries. It’s important that we stay ahead and use AI responsibly. In this new role, David will lead NASA’s efforts to ensure we use AI responsibly in space and on Earth to benefit everyone.”

Following President’s Orders

Salvagnini’s appointment follows President Biden’s order on the safe, secure, and trustworthy development and use of AI. In his expanded role, Salvagnini will be responsible for the strategic planning and vision for how NASA uses AI across the agency.

Promoting AI Innovation

Salvagnini will champion AI innovation at NASA. He will support the development and risk management of AI tools, platforms, and training. NASA will continue to work with other government agencies, universities, industry partners, and experts to stay at the forefront of AI technology.

Experienced Leader

Salvagnini joined NASA in June 2023 after over 20 years of leadership in technology for the intelligence community. Before NASA, he was the chief architect and director of a group at the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.

Salvagnini has led research, development, engineering, and operations for data, IT, and AI programs. He served in the Air Force for 21 years as a communications and computer systems officer.

AI for Space Exploration

NASA is developing ways to use emerging AI technology for its goals and missions. AI can help analyze images from Earth science, search for data on planets outside our solar system, schedule communications for Mars rovers, and more.

Before Salvagnini, NASA’s Chief Scientist Kate Calvin served as the acting official for responsible AI. With Salvagnini leading AI efforts, NASA aims to embrace new technology responsibly for space exploration and scientific discoveries that benefit humanity.

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