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Nelson, George Driver 'Pinky'
Nelson
Nelson
Credit: www.spacefacts.de
American astronomer mission specialist astronaut 1978-1989.

Status: Inactive; Active 1978-1989. Born: 1950-07-13. Spaceflights: 3 . Total time in space: 17.11 days. Birth Place: Charles City, Iowa.

Grew up in Willmar, Minnesota.. Educated Mudd; Washington.

Official NASA Biography as of June 2016:George D. (nickname Pinky) Nelson (Ph.D.)
NASA Astronaut (former)

PERSONAL DATA: Born July 13, 1950, in Charles City, Iowa. Considers Willmar, Minnesota, to be his hometown. His wife Susie is from Alhambra, California. They have two daughters. Pinky enjoys playing golf, reading, swimming, running, and music.

EDUCATION: Graduated from Willmar Senior High School, Willmar, Minnesota, in 1968; received a bachelor of science degree in Physics from Harvey Mudd College in 1972 and a master of science and a doctorate in Astronomy from the University of Washington in 1974 and 1978, respectively.

SPECIAL HONORS: NASA Exceptional Engineering Achievement Medal, NASA Exceptional Service Medal, 3 NASA Space Flight Medals, AIAA Haley Space Flight Award, Federation Aeronautique Internationale's V. M. Komarov Diploma.

EXPERIENCE: Dr. Nelson performed astronomical research at the Sacramento Peak Solar Observatory, Sunspot, New Mexico; the Astronomical Institute at Utrecht, Utrecht, the Netherlands, and the University of Gottingen Observatory, Gottingen, West Germany, and at the Joint Institute for Laboratory Astrophysics in Boulder, Colorado.

NASA EXPERIENCE: Dr. Nelson was selected as an astronaut candidate by NASA in January 1978. He flew as a scientific equipment operator in the WB 57-F earth resources aircraft; served as the Astronaut Office representative in the Space Shuttle Extravehicular Mobility Unit (space suit) development effort. During STS-1 he was the photographer in the prime chase plane. He also served as support crewman and CAPCOM for the last two OFT flights, STS-3 and STS-4, and as head of the Astronaut Office Mission Development Group. A verteran of three space flights, Dr. Nelson served aboard STS-41C in 1984, STS-61C in 1986 and STS-26 in 1988. He has logged a total of 411 hours in space, including 10 hours of EVA flight time.

SPACE FLIGHT EXPERIENCE: STS-41C Challenger (April 6-13, 1984) was a seven day mission during which the crew successfully deployed the Long Duration Exposure Facility (LDEF); retrieved the ailing Solar Maximum Satellite, repaired it on-board the Orbiter, and replaced it in orbit. The mission also included flight testing of Manned Maneuvering Units (MMUs) in two extravehicular activities (EVAs), and operation of the Cinema 360 and IMAX Camera Systems.

STS-61C Columbia (January 12-18, 1986) launched from the Kennedy Space Center, Florida, and returned to a night landing at Edwards Air Force Base, California. During the six day flight the crew deployed the SATCOM KU satellite, and conducted experiments in astrophysics and materials processing.

STS-26 Discovery (September 29 to October 3, 1988) was the first mission flown after the Challenger accident. During the four day flight, the crew successfully deployed the Tracking and Data Relay Satellite (TDRS-C), and operated eleven mid- deck science experiments.

APRIL 1989

This is the only version available from NASA. Updates must be sought direct from the above named individual.


Official NASA Biography

NAME: George D. (nickname Pinky) Nelson (Ph.D.)

NASA Astronaut

BIRTHPLACE AND DATE: Born July 13, 1950, in Charles City, Iowa. Considers Willmar, Minnesota, to be his hometown. His father, Mr. George V. Nelson, lives in Clinton, Iowa.

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Blond hair; blue eyes; height: 5 feet 9 inches; weight: 170 pounds.

EDUCATION: Graduated from Willmar Senior High School, Willmar, Minnesota, in 1968; received a bachelor of science degree in Physics from Harvey Mudd College in 1972 and a master of science and a doctorate in Astronomy from the University of Washington in 1974 and 1978, respectively.

MARITAL STATUS: His wife Susie is from Alhambra, California.

CHILDREN: Aimee Tess, April 25, 1972; Marti Ann, February 27, 1975.

RECREATIONAL INTERESTS: He enjoys playing golf, swimming, running, and music.

EXPERIENCE: Dr. Nelson performed astronomical research at the Sacramento Peak Solar Observatory, Sunspot, New Mexico; the Astronomical Institute at Utrecht, Utrecht, the Netherlands; and the University of Gottingen Observatory, Gottingen, West Germany, and at the Joint Institute for Laboratory Astrophysics in Boulder, Colorado.

NASA EXPERIENCE: Dr. Nelson was selected as an astronaut candidate by NASA in January 1978. He flew as a scientific equipment operator in the WB 57-F earth resources aircraft; served as the Astronaut Office representative in the Space Shuttle Extravehicular Mobility Unit (space suit) development effort. During STS-1 he was the photographer in the prime chase plane. He also served as support crewman and CAPCOM for the last two OFT flights, STS-3 and STS-4, and as head of the Astronaut Office Mission Development Group.

Dr. Nelson first flew on STS 41-C (April 6-13, 1984). During the seven day flight of Challenger the crew successfully deployed the Long Duration Exposure Facility (LDEF); retrieved the ailing Solar Maximum Satellite, repaired it on-board the Orbiter, and replaced it in orbit. The mission also included flight testing of Manned Maneuvering Units (MMU's) in two extravehicular activities (EVA's); operation of the Cinema 360 and IMAX Camera Systems.

He then flew on STS 61-C, which launched from the Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on January 12, and made a night landing at Edwards Air Force Base, California, on January 18, 1986. During the six day flight of Columbia, the crew deployed the SATCOM KU satellite, and conducted experiments in astrophysics and materials processing.

Dr. Nelson then flew on STS-26, the first flight to be flown after the Challenger accident. The Orbiter Discovery was launched from the Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on September 29, 1988. During the four day mission, the crew successfully deployed the Tracking and Data Relay Satellite (TDRS-C), and operated eleven mid-deck science experiments. With the completion of his third space flight he logged a total of 411 hours in space, including 10 hours of EVA flight time.

Currently Assistant Provost and Associate Professor of Astronomy, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington.

NOVEMBER, 1989


More at: Nelson.

Family: Mission Specialist Astronaut, NASA Group 8 - 1978. Country: USA. Flights: STS-41-C, STS-61-C, STS-26. Projects: STS. Bibliography: 12, 5821.
Photo Gallery

STS-26STS-26
STS-26 MS Nelson adjusts ADSF power cable on Discovery's middeck
Credit: NASA



1950 July 13 - .
  • Birth of Dr George Driver 'Pinky' Nelson - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Nelson. American astronomer mission specialist astronaut. Flew on STS-41-C, STS-61-C, STS-26..

1978 January 16 - .
  • NASA Astronaut Training Group 8 selected. - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Bluford, Brandenstein, Buchli, Coats, Covey, Creighton, Fabian, Fisher, Gardner, Gibson, Gregory, Griggs, Hart, Hauck, Hawley, Hoffman, Lucid, McBride, McNair, Mullane, Nagel, Nelson, Onizuka, Resnik, Ride, Scobee, Seddon, Shaw, Shriver, Stewart, Sullivan.

    The group was selected to provide pilot, engineer, and scientist astronauts for space shuttle flights. Recruit women and minorities to introduce diversity into the astronaut corps. 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.. 8,079 applicants, of which half met the basic qualifications. 208 invited for physical tests and interviews. Of the 35 selected, six were women, three were male African-Americans, and one was a male Asian-American.


1984 April 6 - . 13:58 GMT - . Launch Site: Cape Canaveral. Launch Complex: Cape Canaveral LC39A. Launch Platform: MLP1. LV Family: Shuttle. Launch Vehicle: Space Shuttle.
  • STS-41-C - . Call Sign: Challenger. Crew: Crippen, Hart, Nelson, Scobee, van Hoften. Payload: Challenger F05 / LDEF 1 / MMU 3. Mass: 17,357 kg (38,265 lb). Nation: USA. Related Persons: Crippen, Hart, Nelson, Scobee, van Hoften. Agency: NASA Houston. Program: STS. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Flight: STS-41-C. Spacecraft Bus: Shuttle. Spacecraft: Challenger. Duration: 6.99 days. Decay Date: 1984-04-13 . USAF Sat Cat: 14897 . COSPAR: 1984-034A. Apogee: 468 km (290 mi). Perigee: 222 km (137 mi). Inclination: 28.5000 deg. Period: 91.40 min.

    Manned five crew. First repair on orbit of a satellite, Solar Maximum Mission, by James van Hoften and George Nelson. Deployed LDEF. Payloads:Solar Maximum Mission (SMM) repair, manned maneuvering unit (MMU) satellite support, deployment of Long-Duration Exposure Facility (LDEF) in earth orbit free drift. LDEF contained 57 experiments and weighed about 10,000 kg. Cinema 360 and IMAX 70-mm cameras.


1984 April 8 - . 14:18 GMT - .
1984 April 11 - . 08:58 GMT - .
1984 April 13 - .
1986 January 12 - . 11:55 GMT - . Launch Site: Cape Canaveral. Launch Complex: Cape Canaveral LC39A. Launch Platform: MLP1. LV Family: Shuttle. Launch Vehicle: Space Shuttle.
  • STS-61-C - . Call Sign: Columbia. Crew: Bolden, Cenker, Chang-Diaz, Gibson, Hawley, Nelson, Nelson, Bill. Payload: Columbia F07 Satcom-K 1 [PAM-D2]. Mass: 14,724 kg (32,460 lb). Nation: USA. Related Persons: Bolden, Cenker, Chang-Diaz, Gibson, Hawley, Nelson, Nelson, Bill. Agency: NASA Houston. Program: STS. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Flight: STS-61-C. Spacecraft Bus: Shuttle. Spacecraft: Columbia. Duration: 6.09 days. Decay Date: 1986-01-18 . USAF Sat Cat: 16481 . COSPAR: 1986-003A. Apogee: 338 km (210 mi). Perigee: 331 km (205 mi). Inclination: 28.5000 deg. Period: 91.20 min.

    Manned seven crew. Launched Satcom K1. Payloads: Deploy SATCOM (RCA-Satellite Communi-cations) Ku-1 with Payload Assist Module (PAM)-D II. Materials Science Laboratory, Comet Halley Active Monitoring Experiment (CHAMP), Hitchhiker (HH) Goddard (G)-1, thirteen getaway specials (GAS), student experiment, Initial Blood Storage Equipment (lBSE), Characterization of Space Motion Sickness (SMS).


1986 January 18 - .
1988 September 29 - . 15:37 GMT - . Launch Site: Cape Canaveral. Launch Complex: Cape Canaveral LC39B. Launch Platform: MLP2. LV Family: Shuttle. Launch Vehicle: Space Shuttle.
  • STS-26 - . Call Sign: Discovery. Crew: Covey, Hauck, Hilmers, Lounge, Nelson. Payload: Discovery F07 / PDP. Mass: 21,082 kg (46,477 lb). Nation: USA. Related Persons: Covey, Hauck, Hilmers, Lounge, Nelson. Agency: NASA Houston. Program: STS. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Flight: STS-26. Spacecraft Bus: Shuttle. Spacecraft: Discovery. Duration: 4.04 days. Decay Date: 1988-10-03 . USAF Sat Cat: 19547 . COSPAR: 1988-091A. Apogee: 306 km (190 mi). Perigee: 301 km (187 mi). Inclination: 28.5000 deg. Period: 90.60 min.

    Manned five crew. First shuttle reflight after Challenger disaster. Deployed TDRS 3. Payloads: Deploy IUS (lnertial Upper Stage) with Tracking and Data Relay Satellite (TDRS)-C. 3M's Physical Vapor Transport Organics Solids 2 experiment (PVTOS), Automated Directional Solidification Furnace (ADSF), Infrared Communi-cations Flight Experiment (lRCFE), Protein Crystal Growth Il (PCG), Isoelectric Focusing (ISF)-2, Phase Partitioning Experiment (PPE), Aggrega-tion of Red Blood Cells (ARC)-2, Mesoscale Lightning Experiment (MLE)-1, Earth Limb Radiance (ELRAD), Orbiter Experiments (OEX), Autonomous Supporting Instrumentation System (OASlS)-I, two Shuttle Student Involvement Project (SSIP) experiments.


1988 October 3 - .

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