NASA Amends Crew Assignment for STS-126 Mission

Nov 21, 2007

NASA has replaced a crew member assigned to space shuttle mission STS-126. Astronaut Donald R. Pettit will take the place of astronaut Joan E. Higginbotham, who has left NASA to accept a position in the private sector. The mission is targeted to launch in September 2008 and will deliver equipment to the International Space Station enabling larger crews to reside aboard the complex.

Higginbotham flew as a mission specialist on STS-116 in December 2006. She began her career at NASA's Kennedy Space Center, Fla., in 1987, contributing to 53 space shuttle launches. She was selected as an astronaut in 1996.

"Joan has done a tremendous job as an astronaut during the past 11 years," said Steve Lindsey, chief of the Astronaut Office at NASA's Johnson Space Center, Houston. "She contributed her expertise to nearly every space shuttle and International Space Station mission. She will be missed, but we wish her the very best in her future endeavors."

The STS-126 mission will be Pettit's second spaceflight. Pettit will serve as a mission specialist aboard shuttle Endeavour. He joins previously named crew members Commander Christopher J. Ferguson, Pilot Eric A. Boe and mission specialists Stephen G. Bowen, Robert S. Kimbrough and Heidemarie M. Stefanyshyn-Piper.

Pettit first flew as a crew member of Expedition 6, logging more than 161 days in space, including more than 13 hours during two spacewalks. He launched to the station aboard shuttle mission STS-113 in November 2002 and returned to Earth on the Soyuz TMA-1 spacecraft in May 2003. He was selected as an astronaut in 1996.

Source: NASA

Explore further: NASA craft set to beam home close-ups of Pluto

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Stepping stones to NASA's human missions beyond

Jan 21, 2015

"That's one small step for (a) man; one giant leap for mankind." When Neil Armstrong took his first steps on the moon, many strides came before to achieve that moment in history. The same is true for a human ...

Recommended for you

Spacecraft Integral manoeuvres for the future

30 minutes ago

Since 2002, ESA's Integral spacecraft has been observing some of the most violent events in the Universe, including gamma-ray bursts and black holes. While it still has years of life ahead, its fuel will ...

Huge asteroid 2004 BL86 to fly by Earth

1 hour ago

Asteroid 2004 BL86, slated to swoosh by Earth on Jan. 26, is the largest known body to pass near our home planet until 2027. But there's no need to panic as the astronomers estimate that the 500 meters-wide ...

NASA craft set to beam home close-ups of Pluto

16 hours ago

Nine years after leaving Earth, the New Horizons spacecraft is at last drawing close to Pluto and on Sunday was expected to start shooting photographs of the dwarf planet.

Elon Musk's SpaceX drops lawsuit against Air Force

Jan 25, 2015

A spacecraft company run by billionaire Elon Musk has dropped a lawsuit alleging the U.S. Air Force improperly awarded a contract to launch military satellites to a joint venture between Boeing and Lockheed ...

NASA spacecraft almost to Pluto: Smile for the camera!

Jan 23, 2015

It's showtime for Pluto. NASA's New Horizons spacecraft has traveled 3 billion miles and is nearing the end of its nine-year journey to Pluto. Sunday, it begins photographing the mysterious, unexplored, icy ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.