Panelist Bio

Anita Sengupta

CEO and Founder of Hydroplane Ltd.

Dr. Anita Sengupta is an aerospace engineer, commercial pilot, rocket scientist, and veteran of the space program. Holding an MS and PhD in Aerospace Engineering from USC, she has developed technologies that have enabled the exploration of Mars, asteroids, and deep space for 20 years. Dr. Sengupta worked for NASA for 16 years where her engineering projects included her PhD research on developing the ion propulsion system for the Dawn Mission (currently in the main asteroid belt), the supersonic parachute that landed the Curiosity rover on Mars, and the Cold Atom Laboratory, an atomic physics facility onboard the International Space Station.

After leaving NASA she moved into the high-tech transportation sector and led the development of the Hyperloop as Senior Vice President of Systems Engineering at Virgin Hyperloop.

Her most recent entrepreneurial venture is as founder and CEO of Hydroplane Ltd., which is developing hydrogen fuel cell power plant technology for carbon emission free aviation. She is currently a Professor of Astronautical Engineering at USC. In her spare time, she is active in emergency service operations as a Captain and Mission Transport Pilot in the US Air Force Auxiliary Civil Air Patrol.