Meet NASA's Mohawk Guy Who Stole The Show From Curiosity

Boback at work

Photo: NASA

NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity landed on the surface of the red planet on Sunday night, but we were a little distracted by the mohawked engineer shown on the right. Click through to find out who this mystery science man is.

The deets.

His full name is Boback Ferdowsi. He's 32 years old, and lives in Pasadena. He's originally from the San Francisco Bay Area and still has family there.

He's well educated.

He earned his bachelor's degree in aeronautical and astronautical engineering from the University of Washington, and he went to MIT to get a master's degree in the same subject.

Sorry ladies, he has a girlfriend.

'I have a great girlfriend she's put up with me for the last couple years as we put in those 80-hour weeks just trying to get things done. I'm actually just looking forward to spending some time with her,' Ferdowsi said in an interview with @whatstrending.

He's taken his newfound fame well.

'It's really flattering, and it's cool that in some way I represent or have let people see that NASA can have all sorts of faces and all sorts of looks,' he told The Take Away.

He's got a great job.

He's the flight director of the Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity Mission at the Jet Propulsion Lab in California. He describes his job as similar to Ed Hariss's role in the movie Apollo 13.

That's not his everyday hairdo.

He's a Trekkie.

He likes to play.

LEGOs got him into engineering, and he still plays with them (professionally!) at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

He's a space nerd.

He's been working at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory for 9 years. He's spent all of that time on the Curiosity project, but he worked on Cassini too, appearing on a video about the mission.

He's patriotic.

His hairdo was meant to be patriotic as well as cosmic: Apparently the original design was supposed to incorporate blue.

He went to space camp.


He Tweets.

Ferdowsi's Twitter account, @tweetsoutloud, went from 200 to 20,000 followers overnight after his appearance on the NASA live stream.

He's funny.

He likes to make fun of himself too. Seems like a really down to earth guy.

He's sweet.

After Curiosity successfully landed on mars he tweeted and could be seen with tears in his eyes.

He's got a thing for Felicia Day.

Who doesn't?

He's just a normal guy, living on Mars time.

As the excitement over the landing dies down, he'll be headed to work around 10 a.m. every day -- on Mars time -- to oversee operations.

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