Encyclopedia Astronautica

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Gutierrez, Sidney McNeill 'Sid' (1951-) Hispanic-American test pilot astronaut. Flew on STS-40, STS-59. Some data removed at subject's request.

Educated USAFA; Edwards.

Official NASA Biography

NAME: Sidney M. (Sid) Gutierrez

BIRTHPLACE AND DATE: Born June 27, 1951, in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Father, Mr. Robert A. Gutierrez, resides in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Mother, Mrs. Sarah E. Gutierrez, deceased.


Graduated from Valley High School, Albuquerque, New Mexico, in 1969; received a bachelor of science degree in aeronautical engineering from the U.S. Air Force Academy in 1973, and a master of arts degree in management from Webster College in 1977.

MARITAL STATUS: Married to the former Marianne Sue Cremer of Jefferson City, Missouri. Her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Lee G. Cremer, reside in Brackettville, Texas.

CHILDREN: Jennifer Anne, August 30, 1980; David McNeill, March 31, 1984; Katherine Elizabeth, January 29, 1988.

RECREATIONAL INTERESTS: Enjoys camping, woodworking, and racquetball.

ORGANIZATIONS: Member of the Society of Experimental Test Pilots, the Air Force Association, the U.S. Air Force Academy Association of Graduates, and the Society of Space Explorers.

SPECIAL HONORS: NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal, NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal, Two NASA Space Flight Medals, 1990 Congressional Hispanic Caucus Award, Awarded Aviation Week and Space Technology Aerospace Laureate in Space and Missiles for 1991, Hispanic Engineer magazine 1992 Hispanic Engineer of the Year National Achievement Award, Aviation Week and Space Technology Citation for Aerospace Laureate in Space and Missiles for 1994, 1994 selected by Hispanic Business magazine as one or the 100 most Influential Hispanics, selected by Hispanic Magazine for the 1995 Hispanic Achievement Award in Science, 1995 inductee into the International Space Hall of Fame, Distinguished Graduate of the USAF Academy; awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, Legion of Merit, Defense Superior Service Medal, Air Force Meritorious Service Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal with 1 Oak Leaf Cluster, National Defense Service Medal, and Air Training Command Master Instructor.

AIR FORCE EXPERIENCE: Gutierrez was a member of the National Collegiate Championship Air Force Academy Parachute Team with over 550 jumps, and a Master Parachutist rating. After graduation from the Academy he completed undergraduate pilot training at Laughlin Air Force Base in Del Rio, Texas. He remained there as a T-38 instructor pilot from 1975 through 1977. In 1978 Gutierrez was assigned to the 7th Tactical Fighter Squadron at Holloman Air Force Base, Alamogordo, New Mexico, where he flew the F-15 Eagle. He attended the USAF Test Pilot School in 1981 and was assigned to the F-16 Falcon Combined Test Force after graduation. While there, Gutierrez served as primary test pilot for airframe and propulsion testing on the F-16 aircraft. Test projects included the F-100 Digital Electronic Engine Control, F-16C & D Model Structural and Performance Testing, F-16 Maximum Performance Braking Tests, and F-16 Mobile Arrestment Qualification.

He has logged over 4,500 hours flying time in approximately 30 different types of airplanes, sailplanes, balloons, and rockets.

NASA EXPERIENCE: Selected by NASA in May 1984, Gutierrez became an astronaut in June 1985. In his first technical assignment he served as commander for the Shuttle Avionics Integration Laboratory (SAIL), flying simulated missions to verify Shuttle flight software. Following the Shuttle Challenger accident he served as an action officer for the Associate Administrator for Space Flight at NASA Headquarters. His duties included coordinating requests from the Presidential Commission and the U.S. Congress during the investigation. In 1986 and 1987, he participated in the recertification of the Space Shuttle Main Engines, Main Propulsion System, and External Tank. In 1988, he became the Astronaut Office lead for Shuttle software development, verification, and future requirements definition. In 1989 he supported launches of STS-28, 30, 32, 33 and 34 at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

On his first mission Gutierrez served as pilot on the crew of STS-40 Spacelab Life Sciences (SLS-l), a dedicated space and life sciences mission, which launched from the Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on June 5, 1991. SLS-l was a nine-day mission during which crew members performed experiments which explored how humans, animals, and cells respond to microgravity and re-adapt to Earth's gravity on return. Other payloads included experiments designed to investigate materials science, plant biology and cosmic radiation. Following 146 orbits of the Earth and 218 hours in space, Columbia and her crew returned to land at Edwards Air Force Base, California, on June 14, 1991.

After his first flight, Gutierrez served as spacecraft communicator (CAPCOM) - the voice link between the flight crew and mission control - for STS-42, 45, 46, 49 and 52. In 1992 he became the Astronaut Office Branch Chief for Operations Development, overseeing ascent, entry, abort, software, rendezvous, Shuttle systems, main engines, solid rocket boosters, external tank, and landing and rollout issues.

On his second mission, Col. Gutierrez served as Commander of STS-59 Space Radar Laboratory (SRL-l). SRL-l, part of Mission to Planet Earth, was an ll-day flight dedicated to the study of the Earth and the atmosphere around it. The two primary payloads were the Space-borne Imaging Radar-C/X-Band Synthetic Aperture Radar (SIR-C/X-SAR), and Measurement of Air Pollution from Space (MAPS). The crew completed over 400 precise maneuvers (a Shuttle record) to properly point the radar, imaged over 400 selected sites with approximately 14,000 photographs (a Shuttle record) and recorded enough data to fill 26,000 encyclopedias. Areas of investigation included ecology, oceanography, geology, and hydrology. Launching on April 9, 1994, from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, the Endeavour and her crew of six completed 183 orbits of the Earth and 270 hours in space before landing at Edwards AFB, California, on April 20, 1994.

SANDIA EXPERIENCE: In September of 1994 Gutierrez retired at the rank of Colonel from the U.S. Air Force and NASA, returned to his native home of Albuquerque, New Mexico, and joined Sandia National Laboratories. From then until March of 1995 he served as Manager for their Strategic Initiatives Department. In March he became Manager of the Airborne Sensors and Integration Department in the Exploratory Systems Development Center. He also served as Chairman of the Governor's Technical Excellence Committee Spaceport Task Force.

BOARDS AND DIRECTORS; Gutierrez serves on the Boards of Directors of the Texas-New Mexico Power Company and Goodwill Industries of New Mexico and is vice-chairman of the New Mexico Space Center's Governor's Commission.

Birth Place: Hispanic, New Mexico.
Status: Inactive.

Born: 1951.06.27.
Spaceflights: 2 .
Total time in space: 20.34 days.

More... - Chronology...

Associated Countries
See also
  • Astronaut Category of persons, applied to those trained for spaceflight outside of Russia and China. More...
  • NASA Group 10 - 1984 Requirement: pilot, engineer, and scientist astronauts for space shuttle flights. Nickname: The Maggots. Named by Bill Shepherd, who dubbed them in their earliest group training in aircraft survival school, a term familiar to graduates of USMC boot camp. More...

Associated Flights
  • STS-40 Crew: Bagian, Gaffney, Gutierrez, Hughes-Fulford, Jernigan, O Connor, Seddon. Carried Spacelab life sciences module. More...
  • STS-59 Crew: Apt, Chilton, Clifford, Godwin, Gutierrez, Jones. Carried SRL-1 / SIR-C SAR radar. The Space Radar Laboratory obtained radar high-resolution images of approximately 25 percent of the planet's land surfaces. More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • USAF American agency overseeing development of rockets and spacecraft. United States Air Force, USA. More...

Associated Programs
  • STS The Space Transportation System (Space Shuttle) was conceived originally as a completely reusable system that would provide cheap, routine access to space and replace all American and civilian military launch vehicles. Crippled by technological overreach, political compromise, and budget limitations, it instead ended up costing more than the expendable rockets it was to have replaced. STS sucked the money out of all other NASA projects for half a century. The military abandoned its use after the Challenger shuttle explosion in the 1980's. More...

  • NASA Astronaut Biographies, Johnson Space Center, NASA, 1995-present. Web Address when accessed: here.

Gutierrez Chronology

1984 May 23 - .
  • NASA Astronaut Training Group 10 selected. - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Adamson; Baker; Brown, Mark; Cameron; Carter; Casper; Culbertson; Gutierrez; Hammond; Ivins; Lee; Low; McCulley; Shepherd; Thornton; Veach; Wetherbee. The group was selected to provide pilot, engineer, and scientist astronauts for space shuttle flights.. Qualifications: Pilots: Bachelor's degree in engineering, biological science, physical science or mathematics. Advanced degree desirable. At least 1,000 flight-hours of pilot-in-command time. Flight test experience desirable. Excellent health. Vision minimum 20/50 uncorrected, correctable to 20/20 vision; maximum sitting blood pressure 140/90. Height between 163 and 193 cm.

    Mission Specialists: Bachelor's degree in engineering, biological science, physical science or mathematics and minimum three years of related experience or an advanced degree. Vision minimum 20/150 uncorrected, correctable to 20/20. Maximum sitting blood pressure of 140/90. Height between 150 and 193 cm..

1991 June 5 - . 13:24 GMT - . Launch Site: Cape Canaveral. Launch Complex: Cape Canaveral LC39B. LV Family: Shuttle. Launch Vehicle: Shuttle. LV Configuration: Space Shuttle STS-40.
  • STS-40 - . Call Sign: Columbia. Crew: Bagian; Gaffney; Gutierrez; Hughes-Fulford; Jernigan; O Connor; Seddon. Payload: Columbia F11 / GBA-2. Mass: 11,767 kg (25,941 lb). Nation: USA. Related Persons: Bagian; Gaffney; Gutierrez; Hughes-Fulford; Jernigan; O Connor; Seddon. Agency: NASA Houston. Program: STS. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Flight: STS-40. Spacecraft: Columbia. Duration: 9.09 days. Decay Date: 1991-06-14 . USAF Sat Cat: 21399 . COSPAR: 1991-040A. Apogee: 296 km (183 mi). Perigee: 287 km (178 mi). Inclination: 39.0000 deg. Period: 90.40 min. Carried Spacelab life sciences module. Payloads: Spacelab Life Sciences (SLS)-1 with long module, getaway special bridge assembly with 12 getaway specials, Physiological Monitoring System (PMS), Urine Monitoring System (UMS), Animal Enclosure Modules (AEM), Middeck Zero-gravity Dynamics Experiment (MODE), 7 Orbiter Experiments Program experiments.

1991 June 14 - .
1994 April 9 - . 11:05 GMT - . Launch Site: Cape Canaveral. Launch Complex: Cape Canaveral LC39A. LV Family: Shuttle. Launch Vehicle: Shuttle. LV Configuration: Space Shuttle STS-59.
  • STS-59 - . Call Sign: Endeavour. Crew: Apt; Chilton; Clifford; Godwin; Gutierrez; Jones. Payload: Endeavour F06 / MAPS. Mass: 12,490 kg (27,530 lb). Nation: USA. Related Persons: Apt; Chilton; Clifford; Godwin; Gutierrez; Jones. Agency: NASA Houston. Program: STS. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Flight: STS-59. Spacecraft: Endeavour. Duration: 11.24 days. Decay Date: 1994-04-30 . USAF Sat Cat: 23042 . COSPAR: 1994-020A. Apogee: 204 km (126 mi). Perigee: 194 km (120 mi). Inclination: 56.9000 deg. Period: 88.40 min. Carried SIR-C SAR radar. Payloads: Space Radar Laboratory (SRL) 1; Consortium for Materials Development in Space Com-plex Autonomous Payload (CONCAP) IV; three getaway special (GAS) payloads; Space Tissue Loss (STL) A, B; Visual Function Tester (VFT) 4; Shuttle Amateur Radio Experiment (SAREX) II.

1994 April 20 - .
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