What I did on Mars Pathfinder:
I became a member of the Mars Pathfinder Project during its development
phase in June 1993 as the Uplink Engineer. My responsibilities were to develop
a streamlined uplink operational concept for how the Flight Team will plan,
generate, validate, and radiate sequences and commands for commanding the
spacecraft, lander, and the Rover. I also developed and maintained the cruise
mission plan which schedules how and when the various activities are to
occur on the spacecraft and the staffing support required.
During the operational phase (October 1996 to August 1997) of the Mars
Pathfinder Project I was one of several Flight Engineers. My primary responsibilities
were to generate the final sequences and real time commands during the 7
month cruise period. I also generated the final sequence of events, Deep
Space Network (DSN) keyword files, and the space flight operations schedule.
These products were used to coordinate, monitor, and inform all members
of the flight team of the daily activities.
My Career Journey:
My first engineering job after graduating from college (June 1963) was
at the Martin Marietta Aerospace Corporation in Denver, Colorado where I
did the following for eight years: - Mechanical and propulsion testing of
the Titan II & III missiles on Test Stand D3. - Conducted launch, orbit
trajectory and mission design analyses on Titan IIIs and the NASA Skylab
Program with Saturn IV and V launch vehicles. - conducted interplanetary
trajectory and orbital analysis on the Viking Mars Mission.
I came to the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in June 1971 to become a member
of the Viking Flight Team where we placed two orbiters around Mars and then
two landers on the surface. I generated Mars orbit geometry data for the
orbiter science team to plan their observations and developed cruise activity
sequences for both spacecraft during the cruise and prime orbital mission
From 1977 to 1982 I generated sequences for one of two Voyager spacecraft,
and conducted special studies and established mission design guidelines
and constraints for development of the mission profile and sequences for
the Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune encounter phases.
As a member of the Mariner Mark II Mission Design Team, I conducted analyses
and defined future JPL planetary space flight missions that could be developed
and operated between 1990 thru the year 2010.
From 1983 to 1987, I was on a special JPL staff (eventually as the mission
design manager) assigned to the Strategic Defense Initiative Program (Star
Wars Program) where we: - Analyzed and developed top level requirements
for the design and implementation for protection against incoming nuclear
missiles. - Managed the development and demonstration of a test article
to satisfy the acquisition, tracking, and pointing requirements.
For the next six years, I was on the Magellan Flight Project to map the
Venus planet where I held the following positions: - Deputy chief of sequence
design team. - Chief of mission planning team. - Deputy manager of the operations
planning and analysis office.
My Current Job:
I am the Deputy Manager of the System Engineering and Coordination Element
on the Cassini Flight Project. The goals of the Cassini Mission are to perform
scientific and engineering observations of Saturn, its moons, atmosphere,
and rings in 2004, and to deliver a probe into the atmosphere of Saturns
largest moon, Titan.
Goals / Education:
I always wanted to do something in space or design aircraft while watching
the many military and commercial aircraft fly over as I drove the tractors
on our farm in Colorado. So I attended the University of Colorado in Boulder
where I received my B.S. and M.S. degrees from the Aerospace Engineering
I was born and raised on our 80 acre family truck garden farm in Brighton,
Colorado which my grandparents and parents owned and operated since 1901.
I have lived in a community called Altadena with my wife Terri since
our move from Colorado to California. I have a daughter, Stephanie, who
is a Registered Nurse specializing in emergency and intensive care, and
a son, Brian, who also graduated from the University of Colorado and is
a member of the State Farm Insurance Company National Disaster Team.