Space & Technology

August 1, 2016
 

NASA names new chair for Aerospace Safety Advisory Panel

NASA Administrator Charles Bolden has named Patricia Sanders as chair of the Aerospace Safety Advisory Panel, an advisory committee that reports to NASA and Congress on matters concerning the agency’s safety performance.

Sanders currently is an independent aerospace consultant. She served for 34 years in the federal government, retiring in 2008 as the executive director of the Missile Defense Agency.

As the executive director, she was the senior civilian responsible for MDA’s management and operations, safety and quality control, strategic planning, legislative affairs, external communication and all issues related to worldwide personnel administration and development.

“Pat’s background and experience make her an excellent choice to lead this important advisory group,” said Bolden. “I look forward to her leadership and counsel as we continue to push forward on our journey of exploration.”

After completing her doctorate in mathematics from Wayne State University and then teaching at the university level, Sanders began her national security career with the U.S. Army in Germany in 1974. She managed Department of Defense acquisition programs, worked with the Air Force Operational Test Center in space system and aircraft avionics testing, and served as chief scientist for the Command, Control, and Communications Countermeasures Joint Test Force and as director of analysis for the U.S. Space Command.

In 1989, she began working within the Office of the Secretary of Defense, culminating with her service as the director of Test, Systems Engineering and Evaluation. She joined the missile defense community in 1998 and participated in the establishment of the MDA, was responsible for creating its robust test organization, initiated the Sensors Directorate and accomplished pioneering work in managing integration of the Ballistic Missile Defense System.

Sanders replaces Vice Admiral Joseph Dyer, who chaired the panel for 13 years.

Bolden said, “We thank Admiral Dyer profusely for his great public service. His efforts helped us think more effectively and strategically about safety and guided the ASAP in thoughtful commentary as we launched our journey to Mars.”

Congress established the ASAP in 1968 to provide advice and make recommendations to the NASA administrator on safety matters following the 1967 Apollo 1 fire that claimed the lives of three American astronauts.

For more information about the Aerospace Safety Advisory Panel, visit http://oiir.hq.nasa.gov/asap/index.html.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

NASA team investigates ultrafast laser machining for multiple spaceflight applications

(Photo Credit: Bill Hrybyk/NASA) Steve Li (left), Frankie Micalizzi (middle), and Robert Lafon (right) are using an ultrafast laser to bond dissimilar materials and etch microscopic channels or waveguides through which light could travel in photonic integrated circuits and laser transmitters. An ultrafast laser that fires pulses of light just 100 millionths of a nanosecond...
 
 
NASA photograph

NASA looking to tiny technology for big payoffs

NASA photograph NASA works with industry partner Nanocomp Technologies Inc. of Merrimack, New Hampshire, to advance manufacturing of carbon nanotube composite materials. On Oct. 29, NASA visited Nanocomp’s facility to discuss...
 
 
nasa-moon

NASA calls for instruments, technologies for delivery to moon

NASA has announced a call for Lunar Surface Instrument and Technology Payloads that will fly to the Moon on commercial lunar landers as early as next year or 2020. The agency is working with U.S. industry and international part...