Encyclopedia Astronautica

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Kimbrough, Robert Shane (1967-) American engineer mission specialist astronaut. Flew on STS-126. US Army

Educated West Point.

Official NASA Biography - May 2004

Shane Kimbrough, Mission Specialist

AGE: 36

BORN: Killeen, Texas

EDUCATION: BS, Aerospace Engineering, U.S. Military Academy, 1989; MS, Operations Research, Georgia Tech, 1998

CURRENT JOB: Flight Simulation Engineer on the Shuttle Training Aircraft, Johnson Space Center

QUICK FACT: Was captain of the baseball team at West Point and served as an Apache platoon leader during Desert Storm

QUOTE: "I have been fascinated by space travel since I was a kid. I want to explore the unknown."

Many people associate an astronaut career with adventure and glory, but for Shane Kimbrough, it's all about service.

"Service to this nation has always been important to me," Kimbrough says. "The benefits to society as a result of NASA's discoveries are phenomenal. That's what motivated me to want to work here."

Kimbrough, 36, has been selected to begin training this summer as a mission specialist in NASA's 2004 astronaut candidate class. It's a new job that won't take him far from home. He already works for NASA in Houston, as an engineer helping to train astronauts how to land the Space Shuttle.

"My family is ecstatic about my selection," he says. "It is especially nice to be in one place for a while."

Kimbrough has moved around a lot, first as the son of a soldier and now as a U.S. Army officer. He graduated high school at The Lovett School in Atlanta and is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, where he majored in mechanical engineering and was captain of the baseball team. He earned a Master's degree from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

As an Army pilot, Kimbrough trained to fly both airplanes and helicopters and was assigned to fly Apache helicopters. He served in the first Gulf War, Desert Storm in 1991, as a platoon leader in an Apache company. "It was one of the most interesting experiences of my life," he says. "It truly opened my eyes to how fortunate we are as a country."

In his Army career, he also taught math at West Point, including courses such as calculus and statistics. "What an incredibly rewarding experience to interact with the cadets who are now Army officers, defending our country overseas."

Kimbrough, now an Army major, is now married and a father of three. He says his hero is his 90-year-old grandfather.

Kimbrough is setting his sights on the new Vision for Space Exploration. "Once I finish my first year of astronaut training," he says, "I hope to be assigned to several technical jobs so I can improve myself, professionally. But then I'd be thrilled to take on any space mission -- even to the moon or Mars.

"I have been fascinated by space travel since I was a kid," he says. "I want to explore the unknown."

Birth Place: Killeen, Texas.
Status: Active.

Born: 1967.06.04.
Spaceflights: 1 .
Total time in space: 15.85 days.

More... - Chronology...

Associated Countries
See also
Associated Flights
  • STS-126 Crew: Ferguson, Boe, Pettit, Bowen, Stefanyshyn-Piper, Kimbrough. ISS logistics flight. Station resupply with Multi-Purpose Logistics Module (MPLM). More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • US Army American agency overseeing development of spacecraft. US Army, USA. More...

Associated Programs
  • ISS Finally completed in 2010 after a torturous 25-year development and production process, the International Space Station was originally conceived as the staging post for manned exploration of the solar systrem. Instead, it was seemed to be the death knell of manned spaceflight. More...

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

Kimbrough Chronology

2004 May 6 - .
  • NASA Astronaut Training Group 19 selected. - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Acaba; Arnold, Ricky; Bresnik; Cassidy; Dutton; Hernandez; Kimbrough; Marshburn; Metcalf-Lindenburger; Satcher; Walker, Shannon. The group was selected to provide pilot and mission specialists for post-ISS spaceflights to the moon and beyond. 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.. Due to a surplus of astronauts and a dearth of missions, NASA cancelled the planned 2002 astronaut selection. The next call for applications was made in May 2003, with a due date of 1 July. 'Educator astronauts' were especially requested, and 1100 applications were received in this category. The final selection was two pilots and nine mission specialists; nine men and two women. Given the drastic reduction if shuttle flights and ISS crew size planned for the post-Columbia disaster period, the chances for astronauts from this group flying in the next decade seemed slim indeed. Also training in this group were three NASDA astronauts from Japan.

2008 November 15 - . 00:55 GMT - . Launch Site: Cape Canaveral. Launch Complex: Cape Canaveral LC39A. LV Family: Shuttle. Launch Vehicle: Shuttle. LV Configuration: Space Shuttle STS-126 / OV-105 / ET-129 / RSRM-04.
  • STS-126 - . Call Sign: Endeavour. Crew: Ferguson; Boe; Pettit; Bowen; Stefanyshyn-Piper; Kimbrough; Magnus. Return Crew: Ferguson; Boe; Pettit; Bowen; Stefanyshyn-Piper; Kimbrough; Magnus. Payload: Endeavour F22 / MPLM-1 / ULF-2. Mass: 116,500 kg (256,800 lb). Nation: USA. Related Persons: Ferguson; Boe; Pettit; Bowen; Stefanyshyn-Piper; Kimbrough; Magnus. Agency: NASA. Program: ISS. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Flight: STS-126; ISS EO-18; ISS EO-17-1; ISS EO-18-1. Spacecraft: Endeavour. Duration: 15.85 days. Decay Date: 2008-11-30 . USAF Sat Cat: 33441 . COSPAR: 2008-059A. Apogee: 352 km (218 mi). Perigee: 344 km (213 mi). Inclination: 51.6000 deg. Period: 91.50 min. ISS resupply and internal outfitting flight, docked at the Harmony module of the sation at 22:01 GMT on 16 November. The Leonardo module contained 6956 kg of cargo, mainly devoted to allowing a future full ISS crew of six: two crew quarters racks, a Galley rack, a Waste and Hygiene Compartment rack, two Water Recovery System racks, an experiment rack, a Combustion integration rack, and miscellaneous supplies in three Resupply Stowage Racks and six Resupply Stowage Platforms. On 17 November at 17:09 GMT the ISS robot arm moved the Leonardo module from the shuttle's payload bay to the Harmony module nadir port for unloading. The mission also rotated the ISS long-term NASA crew member, replacing Chamitoff with Magnus. Four spacewalks were conducted, primarily to repair a broken ISS Solar Array Rotary Joint.

    The unloaded Leonardo module was returned to the shuttle bay on 26 November. The shuttle undocked from the ISS at 14:47 GMT on 28 November. The next day, at 20:33 GMT, it released a 7 kg PicoSat Solar Cell Testbed Experiment, a prototype for a later picosat mission to geostationary transfer orbit to study degradation of solar cells while passing through the earth's radiation belts.

    Following two wave-offs for a Kennedy Space Center landing due to weather, Endeavour made its 89 m/s deorbit maneuver at 20:19 on 29 November, and landed at Runway 04L/22R at Edwards AFB at 21:25 GMT.

    Cargo Manifest, Total = 17,370 kg:

    • Bay 1-2: Orbiter Docking System = 1800 kg + EMUs 3005 and 3011 = 260 kg
    • Bay 3 Port: APC/SPDU = 100 kg
    • Bay 3 Starboard: APC/SSPL Picosat launcher = 50 kg + PSSC Picosats = 7 kg
    • Bay 7 Starboard: ROEU 751 umbilical = 50 kg
    • Bay 7-12: Leonardo (MPLM-1) = 12748 kg
    • Bay 13: Lightweight MPESS Carrier (LMC)= 1495 kg
    • Sill: RMS 201 = 410 kg + OBSS = 450 kg

2008 November 20 - .
  • EVA STS-126-2 - . Crew: Stefanyshyn-Piper; Kimbrough. EVA Type: Extra-Vehicular Activity. EVA Duration: 0.28 days. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Stefanyshyn-Piper; Kimbrough. Program: ISS. Flight: STS-126; ISS EO-18. Summary: The crew moved two equipment carts from the starboard to the port side of the ISS Mobile Transporter, and then continued work on the Solar Alpha Rotary Joint..

2008 November 22 - .
  • EVA STS-126-4 - . Crew: Bowen; Kimbrough. EVA Type: Extra-Vehicular Activity. EVA Duration: 0.25 days. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Bowen; Kimbrough. Program: ISS. Flight: STS-126; ISS EO-18. Summary: The crew completed repair of the Solar Alpha Rotary Joint, and then installed a television camera and GPS receiver in preparation for a future docking of the Japanese HTV resupply craft..

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