New ExEP Chief Engineer Named: Keith Warfield

By Gary Blackwood

I am pleased to announce the appointment of Keith Warfield as the Chief Engineer for the Exoplanet Exploration Program (ExEP), a NASA program office that JPL manages on behalf of the NASA Astrophysics Division.

Keith is currently a member of ExEP and has recently been responsible for leading the Study Office for two probe-scale exoplanet direct imaging concepts (starshade and coronagraph) in support of NASA-appointed Science & Technology Definition Teams (STDTs). Prior to his work for ExEP, Keith was Lead Engineer for JPL’s Team X, leading or participating in several hundred instrument and mission concept studies.

In addition to his work with Team X, Keith has held the roles of Proposal Manager, Study Lead and Systems Engineer on proposals and concept studies since 1995. Keith has also held task management and cognizant engineering roles on three flight instruments: the Pressure Modulator Infrared Radiometer, the TOPEX Microwave Radiometer, and the Microwave Limb Sounder.

Before coming to JPL, Keith was a mechanical engineer at Caltech working on particle detector instrumentation for the Stanford Accelerator. Keith earned a B.S. in Engineering & Applied Science at California Institute of Technology. In his new role as Program Chief Engineer Keith will be responsible for communicating technical excellence and ensuring technical integrity of the Exoplanet Exploration Program and projects within the Program.

Keith will continue to support the Program Office as a member of the JPL Project Systems Engineering & Formulation Section and will continue to lead design team support for the extended studies of the probe-scale STDTs.

Please join me in welcoming Keith as the Program Chief Engineer for Exoplanet Exploration Program.

Gary H. Blackwood, PhD

Manager, NASA Exoplanet Exploration Program