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Children's Literature Award

The Children’s Literature Award is presented for an outstanding, significant, and original contribution in aeronautics and astronautics.

The award is presented biennially (odd years) thereafter at an appropriate AIAA conference, generally the AIAA SciTech Forum. Recipients receive an engraved medal and a certificate of citation (signed by the AIAA President and Chair of the Honors and Awards Committee) symbolizing excellence.


The next award is planned to be presented at the SciTech Forum in Nashville Tennessee in January 2021.

Award Description

Recipients receive a distinctive engraved medal and a certificate of citation symbolizing literary excellence.

Recognition of awardees after the fact will appear in the appropriate issue of Aerospace America, posted on the AIAA web site, or other member outreach. Responsibility for supplying this data resides with AIAA Headquarters. 


The intent of the Honors and Awards Program is to recognize deserving individuals by the AIAA community as a whole and before their peers. To accomplish this, awards shall be presented by the AIAA President representing the AIAA community. The AIAA President may designate a Vice-President, AIAA Past President, or a member of the Board of Directors to perform this duty if necessary. Awards will be presented during an appropriate technical conference or event. Because of the number of awards in the AIAA honors and awards program, it is not possible to re-schedule or postpone the presentation of an award.

Procedures and Requirements

Who May Nominate

Due to the nature of the award, there is no requirement that the nominee, nominator or references be AIAA members.


  • Nominated works must have publication dates within two (2) years of the submission deadline. This would include revised editions of previous works and translations of previous works

  • All nominations will be held over for consideration for 1 award cycle

  • Nominations must be submitted in the English Language

  • Six (6) copies of the nominated publication or a digital manuscript, must be submitted with the nomination

  • Past winning works of the AIAA History Manuscript Award are NOT eligible for this award

  • Publications with multiple authors are allowed

  • Author (Nominee) Eligibility

The nominee does not have to be an AIAA member. However, the nominee must not have been a member of the AIAA committee responsible for this particular technical award for the past two years. Under extraordinary circumstances, however, individuals who are or have been members of the responsible committee during the preceding two years may be considered for the award provided certain procedures and conditions are adhered to. For details on these circumstances, please contact us.

Nomination Deadline

The deadline for this award is 1 July. A complete nomination package (signed nomination form, a digital and/or 6 copies of the nominated manuscript, etc.) must be received by AIAA on or prior to the deadline date. Nomination packages will be accepted on a daily basis and considered for the appropriate award year. To learn more about the nomination procedures, review the AIAA nomination page.

Nomination Form

All award nominations must be submitted on the AIAA nomination form, (select "Publication Nomination Form" under "How Can I submit a Nomination" section). The nominator must sign and date the form. AIAA Members in good standing may also place a nomination online by logging into “MY AIAA” on the AIAA web site. 

If there are at least three nomination packages (consisting of new and carryover nominations) on file at AIAA Headquarters on or prior to the deadline date, the award will be considered for presentation that award year and the nomination packages will go forward to the appropriate selection committee. If there are fewer than three nomination packages on file, the nomination packages will be held for consideration until the next award year. Incomplete nomination packages will not be submitted to the selection committee.


Selection Criteria

A documented, quantitative grading scale will be used by the selection subcommittee to distinguish the candidates and identify a recipient.

Each of the following categories will be graded form from 1 to 5, with 5 being excellent and 1 being very poor.

  • Usability/readability

  • Content

  • Technical Accuracy

  • Age appropriateness

  • Long-term value

  • New Scholarship

  • Relevance to Aerospace

  • Education value

A minimum quantitative score will be associated with the award criteria to establish a merit-worthy threshold to ensure and maintain award technical and “audit trail” integrity. If the minimum score is not obtained by any nominee, then the award will NOT be given out during that particular award cycle. Allowing for a non-recipient demonstrates the intended significance and persistent quality of the award such that it is not given out to just the best of the non-qualified nominees.


Award Recipients




Andrea Beaty


Award: "Rosie Revere Engineer"


Dr Margaret A Weitekamp

Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum


Award: "Pluto's Secret: An Icy World's Tale of Discovery"


Ms. Mary Kay Carson


Award: “Wright Brothers for Kids”

AIAA Citation: Published by Chicago Review Press


Ms. Mary Kay Carson


Award: "Exploring the Solar System"

AIAA_kids-book-award_Exploring the Solar
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