Howdy! My name is Keri Bean and I am a mission operations engineer at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. I'm in the science plan integration group at JPL. I currently do science planning and sequencing for the Dawn mission.

I graduated from Texas A&M University in August 2013 with a master's in atmospheric sciences. My advisor was Dr. Mark Lemmon. I earned my B.S. in meteorology and double minors in mathematics and Earth sciences from Texas A&M University in spring 2010 with designation of Undergraduate Research Scholar.



I was the ’08-’09 director of educational outreach and ’09 election committee member for the USA chapter of the Students for the Exploration and Development of Space.

I was the college program coordinator for the 2009 International Year of Astronomy.

I’m a former president, vice president, and treasurer for the Texas A&M Students for the Exploration and Development of Space.

I was one of the founding members of Women's Rowdies.

I’m a former lead forecaster, social chair, forecast coordinator, and team leader for the Texas Aggie Storm Chasers.

I was a member of the '09-'10 College of Geosciences Undergraduate Recruitment Team.

I was the summer ’09 Friday afternoon radio broadcast meteorologist for Texas A&M Weather Broadcasting.

I’m a member of Women in Planetary Science.

I volunteered for the Mars Rover Celebration at the University of Houston.

I have a technician-class HAM radio license. My callsign is KE5RDD.

I am a member of JPL’s Advisory Council for Women.

I am a member of JPL’s speaker’s bureau.


Missions I've Worked On

Below I've added links to missions I've worked on.


NASA website


Twitter account

Facebook page


Research posters/papers I’m an author on

Bean, K., M. Lemmon, 2008. A Quick Look at the Samples Obtained and Analyzed During the Phoenix Mission. SpaceVision.

Bean, K., N. Hall, M. Lemmon, 2008. A Quick Comparison of Dust Devils from MER and Phoenix. SpaceVision.

Ellehoj, M., P. Taylor, H. Gunnlaugsson, B. Gheynani, L. Drube, C. von Holstein-Rathlou, J. Whiteway, K. Bean, M. Lemmon, M. Madsen, D. Fisher, R. Volpe, and P. Smith, 2008. Phoenix Mars Lander: Vortices and Dust Devils at the Landing Site. AGU Fall 2008 Meeting.

Bean, K., G. Atkinson, 2009. Lunar-Gravity Testing of P-POD Based Constellation EVA Camera Mounting System. Microgravity University proposal.

Bean, K., M. Lemmon, et al., 2009. Surface Stereo Imager Observations of Dust Devils at the Phoenix Landing Site. 40th LPSC.

Ellehoj, M., H. Gunnlaugsson, P. Taylor, B. Gheynani, J. Whiteway, M. Lemmon, K. Bean, L. Tamppari, L. Drube, C. von Holstein-Rathlou, M. Madsen, D. Fisher, and P. Smith, 2009. Dust Devils and Vortices at the Phoenix Landing Site on Mars. 40th LPSC.

Ellehoj, M., H.P. Gunnlaugsson, K.M. Bean, B.A. Cantor, L. Drube, D. Fisher, B.T. Gheynani, A-M. Harri, C. von Holstein-Rathlou, H. Kahanpaa, M. T. Lemmon, M.B. Madsen, M.C. Malin, J. Polkko, P. Smith, L.K. Tamppari, P.A. Taylor, W. Weng, and J. Whiteway, 2009. Convective Vorticies and Dust Devils at the Phoenix Mars Mission landing site. Journal of Geophysical Research.

Holstein-Rathlou, C., H.P. Gunnlaugsson, J.P. Merrison, K.M. Bean, B.A. Cantor, J.A. Davis, R. Davy, M.D. Ellehoj, W. Goetz, S.F. Hviid, C.F. Lange, S.E. Larsen, M. Lemmon, M.B. Madsen, M. Malin, J. Moores, P. Nornberg, P. Smith, L. Tamppari, and P.A. Taylor, 2009. Winds at the Phoenix Landing Site. Journal of Geophysical Research.

Bean, K., G. Atkinson, T. Saultz, B. Stern, D. Delao, M. Requa, C. Mollere-Rodriguez, B. Young, M. Lemmon, and T. Pollock, 2009. Video Camera System for the Lunar Electric Rover to Document Lunar Extravehicular Activities. Moon Work proposal.

Bean, K., M. Lemmon, 2010. Measuring Nighttime Atmospheric Opacity Using Images from the Mars Exploration Rovers. Undergraduate Research Scholars proposal and thesis.

Bean, K., M. Lemmon, 2010. Nighttime Optical Depth Patterns from the Mars Exploration Rovers. 41st LPSC.

Holstein-Rathlou, C., H.P. Gunnlaugsson, J.P. Merrison, P. Nornberg, M.D. Ellehoj, K.M. Bean, M.T. Lemmon, L. Tamppari, P. Smith, and the Phoenix Science Team, 2010. Time-Dependent Dust Accumulation on the Mars Phoenix Wind Indicator. 41st LPSC.

Bean, K., A. Azocar, D. Charles, W. Davis, C. Mollere-Rodriguez, B. Moore, C. Pannier, A. Probe, C. Runco, M. Lemmon, 2011. A Heads-up Display for Extra-vehicular Activity Suits. Space Technology proposal.

J. E. Moores, R. Haberle, M. Lemmon, K. Bean, M. Mischna, M. de la Torre Juarez, C. Newman, F. Calef, B. Cantor, A. Vasavada, J. Maki, J. Martin-Torres, M.-P. Zorzano, R. Francis, E. McCullough, the MSL Science Team and the Engineering Camera Team, 2013. Constraints on Atmospheric Water Vapor and Circulation at Gale Crater from the MSL Atmospheric Monitoring Campaign. 44th LPSC.

K. S. Edgett, R. A. Yingst, M. E. Minitti, M. L. Robinson, M. R. Kennedy, L. J. Lipkaman, E. H. Jensen, R. C. Anderson, K. M. Bean, L. W. Beegle, J. L. Carsten, C. L. Collins, B. Cooper, R. G. Deen, J. L. Eigenbrode, W. Goetz, J. P. Grotzinger, S. Gupta, V. E. Hamilton, C. J. Hardgrove, D. E. Harker, K. E. Herkenhoff, P. N. Herrera, L. Jandura, L. C. Kah, G. M. Krezoski, P. C. Leger, M. T. Lemmon, K. W. Lewis, M. B. Madsen, J. N. Maki, M. C. Malin, B. E. Nixon, T. S. Olson, O. Pariser, L. V. Posiolova, M. A. Ravine, C. Roumelioitis, S. K. Rowland, N. A. Ruoff, C. C. Seybold, J. Schieber, M. E. Schmidt, A. J. Sengstacken, J. J. Simmonds, K. M. Stack, R. J. Sullivan, V. V. Tompkins, T. L. Van Beek, and the MSL Science Team, 2013. Curiosity’s Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI): Initial Observations and Activities. 44th LPSC.

M. T. Lemmon, J. F. Bell III, M. C. Malin, K. M. Bean, M. J. Wolff, A. Vasavada, F. J. Martin-Torres, M.-P. Zorzano-Mier, and the MSL Science Team. Astrometric Observations of Phobos and Deimos During Solar Transits Images by the Curiosity Mastcam. 44th LPSC.

M. Lemmon, J. Bell III, M. Malin, K. Bean, M. Wolff, A. Vasavada, F. J. Martin-Torres, M. P. Zorzano-Mier, and the MSL Science Team. Astrometric observations of Phobos and Deimos during solar transits imaged by the Curiosity Mastcam. EGU General Assembly 2013.

Bean, K. & M. Lemmon, 2013. Determining Nighttime Atmospheric Optical Depth Using Mars Exploration Rover Images. Master’s thesis.

Bean, K.M. & M. T. Lemmon, 2014. Determining Nighttime Atmospheric Optical Depth Using Mars Exploration Rover Images. 8th Mars.

J. E. Moores, M. T. Lemmon, S. C. R. Rafkin, R. Francis, J. Pla-Garcia, M. de la Torre Juarez, K. Bean, D. Kass, R. Haberle, C. Newman, M. Mischna, A. Vasavada, N. Renno, J. Bell, F. Calef, B. Cantor, T. Mcconnochie, A.-M. Harri, M. Genzer, M. Wong, M. D. Smith, F. J. Martin-Torres, M.-P. Zorzano, O. Kemppinen, E. McCullough. Atmospheric movies acquired at the Mars Science Laboratory landing site: Cloud Morphology, Frequency, and Significance to the Gale Crater Water Cycle and Phoenix Mission Results. Advances in Space Research, 2015.

Coming soon: Planetary & Space Science paper on thesis topic

Some of the guest lectures I’ve given

Participant at NASA JSC STS-130 tweetup, February 2010.

Dust devils from Phoenix as a grad student seminar, March 2011.

Participant in KSC NASA Tweetup for STS-135 launch, July 2011.

Seminar about thesis work on Martian nighttime optical depth at York University in Toronto, Ontario, April 2013.

Thesis defense, Texas A&M University, May 2013.

Participant in NASA Johnson Space Center ISS Science NASA Social, May 2013

Talk about working at JPL to Magnolia Science Academy 5 in Hollywood, December 2013.

Seminar about thesis work on Martian nighttime optical depth to the Mars seminar series at JPL, January 2014.

Talk about robotic exploration of the solar system with middle schoolers in Minnesota via NASA's Digital Learning Network, January 2014.

Panelist on a Women's History Month panel discussion via NASA's Digital Learning Network, March 2014.

Science Hack Day Ambassador, San Francisco, October 2014

Gave multiple talks at the Women in STEM conference for 8th grade girls, February 2015

Talk about Dawn and Martian astronomy to the Santa Monica Amateur Astronomy Club, February 2015

Talk about working at JPL to UTT Middle School in Tustin, CA via NASA's Digital Learning Network, February 2015

Talk about Dawn to Lucasfilm and Industrial Light & Magic, February 2015

Panelist at a Girls in STEM event hosted by the Columbia Memorial Space Center at the Downey City Library, April 2015

Gave a joint talk with Mike Seibert about MER and Dawn at Star Wars Celebration Anaheim, April 2015


JPL Section 397 Discovery Award, 2014

NASA Group Achievement Award as part of the MSL Mastcam, MAHLI, and MARDI Instruments Team

NASA Group Achievement Award as part of the Phoenix Development and Mission Team

NASA Langley Moon Work Contest 2009, 3rd Place.

NASA Langley Space Technology Competition 2011, 1st place.


Bighorn Arch Seismic Experiment: I helped deploy seismometers in Wyoming around the Bighorn Mountains. I also went on geologic field trips to places like Devil's Tower National Monument, Yellowstone National Park, and more.

Mars Exploration Rovers: I completed an undergraduate and master's thesis on measuring the nighttime atmospheric optical depth and looking for any significant changes, either caused by dust settling or cloud formation. This research is now being put into journal form.

Phoenix Mars Lander: I worked on analyzing cloud observations, dust devils observations, lightning detection, and image calibration.

Hubble Space Telescope: I did photometry in the B, V, and I filters of M81 (Bode’s Galaxy) to determine any new Cepheid Variables as part of the Hubble Key Project to refine Hubble’s constant. I did this under the direction of Dr. Lucas Macri.

Mars Science Laboratory: I was a member of the Malin Space Science Systems science team and the MSL environment theme group. I helped coordinate meteorological observations, participated in operations, and conducted research. I participated as a Mastcam payload uplink lead, environment theme group lead, and environment theme group mini keeper of the plan.

Dawn: I am currently a science planner and sequence engineer for the Dawn mission. I am working with the team to develop a robust observation plan for Ceres and to sequence the science activities.

Media about me/contributed to/see myself in the background

NASA JPL release on MER social media

Popular Science article on Phoenix’s cameras

Texas A&M College of Geosciences video interview

Is There Life on Mars? PBS NOVA special

The Planetary Society’s blog on social media

Guest on The Planetary Society’s blog, LPSC: Saltwater at the Phoenix landing site?

The Daytime Astronomer’s blog post on NASA EDGE’s Mission Madness contest

Interview with Dr. Pamela Gay at LPSC 2008

New Scientist article on space and astronomy Twitterers

Meteorology Students on Winning Team in NASA Competition

Postcards from the Future

Article on Phoenix listening attempts in The Battalion

Contact Lost with Mars Lander

Rocket Scientist by Association

NASA EDGE live program during STS-135 (start ~6min mark)

Monster Rover Heads to Mars

Mars rover team faces the masses

NASA's Curiosity Rover team adjust to living by 40-minute longer Martian days

Aggies Aid in Mars Exploration

Research at Texas A&M: Exploring the Martian Atmosphere

Martian Moon Bites Into the Sun

Mashable’s 15 Twitter Accounts Every Space Lover Should Follow

Curiosity Rover Identifies Mysterious Bright Object as Plastic

Ultimate Mars Challenge PBS NOVA special

Interview with Keri Bean, the Martian Storm Chaser

Australian Science interview

Article about Social Media at NASA

TAMU press release about my work on Curiosity

NASA's Curiosity Rover team adjust to living by 40-minute longer Martian days

Wired UK: Curiosity rover identifies unknown object as plastic

Bad Astronomy: Pew! Pew! Take that, Mars!

Western Worlds podcast

18 Complicated Scientific Ideas Explained Simply

For Valentine's Day, Enjoy These Hearts On Earth, Mars And Other Places

Space Inspired "Nerd Couture"

20 Fascinating Lady Scientists to Follow on Twitter

JPL utilizes Legos, other toys to help build the future

From Lego's legacy, JPL utilizes popular toys

Keri Bean and Morgan Freeman talk science outreach!

My NASA Solar System Exploration profile

Drivin' a Spacecraft - A NASA Dawn Google+ Hangout

My write up about being a Science Hack Day Ambassador


Hubble and Dawn Collaborate to See Ceres - A Hubble Google+ Hangout

Dawn Spacecraft's Dwarf Planet Dance Improves Hubble's Far Away View

NASA Spacecraft Ready to Unlock Ceres' Mysteries

Hunt for Dwarf Planet Ceres Mysterious Water Begins

Find Inspiration from these Women Working with Science in Public

What's Next For the Dawn Mission? An Interview with Keri Bean, NASA Engineer and R2D2's Best Friend

Star Wars Celebration Schedule Highlights - 33 Events You Can't Miss This Weekend

These Photos of Scientists With Their Machines Are Pure Excellence