August 25, 2011
Donald R. Pettit (Ph.D.)
PERSONAL DATA: Born 1955 in Silverton, Oregon. Married. Two children.
EDUCATION: Graduated from Silverton Union High School, Silverton, Oregon, in 1973; received a bachelor of science degree in chemical engineering from Oregon State University in 1978; and a doctorate in chemical engineering from the University of Arizona in 1983.
EXPERIENCE: Staff scientist at Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, New Mexico from 1984-1996. Projects included reduced gravity fluid flow and materials processing experiments on board the NASA KC-135 airplane, atmospheric spectroscopy on noctilucent clouds seeded from sounding rockets, fumarole gas sampling from volcanoes, and problems in detonation physics. He was a member of the Synthesis Group, slated with assembling the technology to return to the moon and explore Mars (1990), and the Space Station Freedom Redesign Team (1993).
NASA EXPERIENCE: Selected by NASA in April 1996, Dr. Pettit reported to the Johnson Space Center in August 1996. A veteran of two spaceflights, Dr. Pettit has logged over 176 days in space and over 13 EVA hours. He lived aboard the Space Station for 5-1/2 months in 2002-2003 and, in 2008, was a member of the STS-126.crew.
SPACE FLIGHT EXPERIENCE: Expedition 6 (November 23, 2002 to May 3, 2003). Dr. Pettit completed his first space flight as NASA ISS Science Officer aboard the International Space Station, logging over 161 days in space, including over 13 EVA hours. During 5-1/2 months aboard the International Space Station, the crew worked with numerous U.S. and Russian science experiments. Dr. Pettit and the mission commander Ken Bowersox performed 2 EVAs (spacewalks) to continue the external outfitting of the orbital outpost. The Expedition 6 crew launched on STS-113 Space Shuttle Endeavour and returned to Earth on Soyuz TMA-1.
STS-126 Endeavour (November 14-30, 2008) launched at night from the Kennedy Space Center, Florida, and returned to land at Edwards Air Force Base, California. It was NASA’s 4th shuttle flight in 2008 and the 27th Shuttle/Station assembly mission. Highlights of the almost 16-day mission included expanding the living quarters of the space station to eventually house 6 member crews by delivering a new bathroom, kitchenette, two bedrooms, an exercise machine, and a water recycling system. During the mission Dr. Pettit operated the robotic arm for a total of four EVAs (spaewalks) performed by three members of the crew. STS-126 also delivered a new resident to the station, replacing Greg Chamitoff, Expedition 17-18 with Sandy Magnus, Expedition 18. STS-126 returned to Earth after completing 250 orbits in over 6 million miles.
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