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Mission STS-117 Crew Profiles: Four rookies set for spaceflight

By Carpenter S. Newton     Jun 3, 2007 in Science
Who exactly will be going into space later this week onboard space shuttle Atlantis? Wonder no more as I briefly profile the diverse cast that is slated to leave the planet for work on the International Space Station.
Information complied by Carpenter Newton for Digital Journal –– Consider this a ‘get to know you’ session with the crew of STS-117, which will launch aboard space shuttle Atlantis for a date with the International Space Station on Friday, June 8 at 7:38 p.m. EDT from Kennedy Space Center.
STS-117 will mark the 118th space shuttle flight, and 21st mission to the International Space Station. The mission objective is to deliver and install a new truss segment, unfold a new solar array and fold an old one on the ISS. Also, astronauts aboard the space station will be exchanged. STS-117 is scheduled to take 11 days.
I will have complete coverage of STS-117 right here at Digital Journal as it progresses. Stay tuned.
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Mission Commander Frederick W. Sturckow
Age: 45
Hometown: Lakeside, California
Education: Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering, California Polytechnic State University
Previous spaceflight experience: STS-88 Endeavour and STS-105 Discovery
Miscellaneous: Sturckow was selected by NASA in December 1994. After training, he went on to serve at several important positions at Kennedy Space Center before piloting space shuttle Endeavour on mission STS-88 in 1998, the first space shuttle mission to the International Space Station. He returned to space just three years later aboard Discovery on mission STS-105, the 11th mission to the ISS. Sturckow has just over 568 hours logged in space.
Pilot Lee Joseph Archambault
Age: 46
Hometown: Bellwood, Illinois
Education: Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees in Aeronautical/Astronautical Engineering, University of Illinois-Urbana
Previous spaceflight experience: Rookie
Miscellaneous: Picked up as a pilot by NASA in June 1998, Archambault was assigned to Astronaut Office Shuttle Operations after a year of training. There, he worked on flight instrument upgrades that were implemented on the space shuttle in 2003. Archambault has supported launch and landing operations at Kennedy Space Center for missions STS-111 and STS-114.
Mission Specialist James F. Reilly II, Ph.D
Age: 53
Hometown: Mesquite, Texas
Education: Doctorate in Geosciences, University of Texas-Dallas
Previous spaceflight experience: STS-89 Endeavour and STS-104 Atlantis
Miscellaneous: Reilly was selected by NASA in December 1994, where after completion of training, he went on to work technical issues for the Astronaut Office Computer Support Branch. He flew aboard space shuttle Endeavour on mission STS-89 in 1998 and later participated in the ninth mission to the International Space Station on STS-104, July 2001. Reilly has logged over 517 hours in space, including 3 spacewalks that total 16 hours and 30 minutes.
Mission Specialist Steven R. Swanson
Age: 46
Hometown: Steamboat Springs, Colorado
Education: Bachelor of Science in Engineering Physics, University of Colorado; Master of Applied Science in Computer Systems, Florida Atlantic University; Doctorate in Computer Science, Texas A&M University
Previous spaceflight experience: Rookie
Miscellaneous: Swanson began working at NASA in 1987 as a systems engineer. In 1998, he was selected as an Astronaut Candidate and after completing training, was assigned to the Astronaut Office Space Station Operations branch. Swanson has completed training for operating shuttle and International Space Station robotic arms.
Mission Specialist Patrick G. Forrester
Age: 50
Hometown: El Paso, Texas
Education: Bachelor of Science degree in Applied Sciences and Engineering, United States Military Academy; Master of Science degree in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, University of Virginia
Previous spaceflight experience: STS-105 Discovery
Miscellaneous: Forrester was assigned to NASA as an aerospace engineer in July 1993. He was selected as a mission specialist astronaut candidate in May 1996, where after training he was assigned to the Kennedy Space Center, performing duties as a member of the astronaut support team. Forrester served as a CAPCOM for International Space Station and shuttle missions before flying aboard Discovery on mission STS-105, the 11th mission to the ISS. He has logged over 285 hours in space, along with 11 hours and 45 minutes of spacewalk time.
Mission Specialist John D. Olivas, Ph.D
Age: 41
Hometown: Unknown
Education: Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering, University of Texas-El Paso; Masters of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering, University of Houston; Doctorate in Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science, Rice University
Previous spaceflight experience: Rookie
Miscellaneous: Olivas’ astronaut training began in 1998, where he received intensive instruction in space shuttle and International Space Station systems. After being assigned with a Robotics Branch, he was chosen to work with an EVA (extra vehicular activity) Branch and supported research efforts focused on developing materials, tools and techniques to perform on-orbit shuttle repair. Olivas will perform two spacewalks on STS-117.
Mission Specialist/Expedition 15/16 Flight Engineer Clayton C. Anderson
Age: 48
Hometown: Ashland, Nebraska
Education: Bachelor of Science degree (Cum Laude) in Physics, Hastings College; Master of Science degree in Aerospace Engineering, Iowa State University
Previous spaceflight experience: Rookie
Miscellaneous: Anderson began working with NASA at the Johnson Space Center in 1983, performing rendezvous and proximity operations trajectory designs for early space shuttle and space station missions. He was selected as a mission specialist in June 1998; after training, Anderson served as the Crew Support Astronaut for International Space Station Expedition 4, providing ground support on technical issues. He was also the back-up Flight Engineer for ISS Expeditions 12, 13 and 14.
Clayton Anderson will spend four months aboard the ISS after docking on STS-117. He will replace Sunita Williams, who will return home aboard Atlantis. Anderson will return to earth on space shuttle Discovery during mission STS-120.
Mission Specialist/Expedition 14/15 Flight Engineer Sunita L. Williams
Age: 41
Hometown: Needham, Massachusetts
Education: Master of Engineering Management, Florida Institute of Technology
Previous spaceflight experience: STS-116 Discovery, ISS Expeditions 14 and 15
Miscellaneous: Williams was selected by NASA as an astronaut candidate in June 1998. Following training, she worked in Moscow with the Russian Space Agency on Russian contributions to the International Space Station. Williams was also a NEEMO2 crewmember and lived underwater in the Aquarius habitat for 9 days.
Sunita docked with the ISS on December 11, 2006 on space shuttle Discovery, mission STS-116. As a member of the Expedition 14 crew, Williams set a spacewalk record for women, logging 29 hours and 17 minutes of EVA activity. Currently aboard the ISS as a Flight Engineer for Expedition 15, Williams will return home aboard Atlantis STS-117 after a nearly seven month stay on the ISS.
All images courtesy of NASA as per fair-use policy.
More about Sts-117 crew profiles, Atlantis, NASA
 
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