A Journey Through Space: the final flight of the Space Shuttle Endeavour

Gregory Chamitoff, Astronaut and Adjunct Professor at the University of Sydney

Presented by the Dean's International Lecture Series at the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technologies

59:00 minutes Download video (mp4, 296 Mb)

Dr Greg Chamitoff, Astronaut and Adjunct Professor at the University, will take you aboard the final flight of the Space Shuttle Endeavour (STS-134), where he served as Mission Specialist.

Endeavour’s last flight, in May 2011, was an exciting and ambitious mission that carried critical spare equipment to the International Space Station and installed one of the great new observatories, the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS). Greg performed key operations with the Shuttle and Station Robotic Arms to install this particle physics detector that studies background cosmic radiation for clues to solve some of the key remaining questions of how the Universe was formed. Greg also completed two of the four spacewalks on the mission, the last of which marked the completion of International Space Station assembly.

As the space shuttle program comes to an end, Greg will take you on a journey through space, bringing the International Space Station and the Endeavour to life through first-hand experience, photos and high-definition video.

Greg Chamitoff was born in Montreal, Canada. He received a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from California Polytechnic State University, a M.S. in Aeronautical Engineering from Caltech, a Ph.D. in Aeronautics and Astronautics from MIT, and a M.S. degree in Space Science from the University of Houston Clearlake. While at Cal Poly, he developed a self-guided robot for his senior thesis, and was forever hooked on the prospects of automatic control and autonomous systems. Later at MIT and Draper Labs, he worked on the control analysis for robotic deployment of the Hubble Space Telescope, designed attitude control software upgrades for the Space Shuttle, and developed reconfigurable control strategies for the Space Station. His doctoral thesis was on a new method for robust flight control of hypersonic vehicles.

From 1993 to 1995, Greg was a visiting lecturer at the University of Sydney, where he taught courses in flight dynamics and control, and led a research group in the development of flight control techniques for autonomous aircraft.

In 1995, he joined Mission Operations at the Johnson Space Center, where he developed software applications for spacecraft attitude control monitoring, prediction, analysis, and maneuver optimization. He was selected by NASA as an astronaut candidate in 1998 and began training toward a future spaceflight assignment.

In 2002, Greg was a crew-member on the Aquarius undersea research habitat for 9 days as part of the NEEMO 3 Mission (NEEMO = NASA Extreme Environment Mission Operations).

In 2008, he served as the Flight Engineer and Science Officer for a 6-month mission aboard the International Space Station during Expeditions 17 and 18. He launched to the station on Shuttle Mission STS-124 and returned to Earth on Shuttle Mission STS-126.

Just a few months ago, he served as a Mission Specialist on the last flight of Space Shuttle Endeavour, STS-134. During this mission, he performed operations with the Shuttle and Station Robotic Arms, including the installation of a pallet of spare equipment (ELC-3) and a particle physics observatory called the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS), which holds great promise for fundamental breakthroughs in our understanding of the Universe. He also performed two spacewalks, the last of which marked the completion of Space Station assembly and was the final spacewalk of the Space Shuttle Program. In total, Greg has logged over 198 days in space.


Royal Aeronautical Society logo

Supported by the Royal Aeronautical Society - Sydney Branch

American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics logo

Supported by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics