The Corona Award recognizes a distinguished lifetime of achievement in the exploration of space. Recognizing only the brightest of our nation's space explorers, The Corona takes its name from the outer atmosphere of the sun. Often referred to as the Sun's crown, the corona extends continuously into space, just as the influence of The Corona's recipient extends throughout the space community. The handcrafted crystal trophy depicts both the shining promise of tomorrow and vast mystery of a starry night. The Corona Award is made only when the RNASA Foundation feels that exceptional merit and opportunity require it. It has only been awarded three times in 25 years.