Search Marshall

Go

Text Size

 
 
Link to Marshall Newsroom home page

For release: 11-01-04
Release #: 04-265  

Malvern, Ark., native Ralph Carruth named director of major engineering laboratory at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center

Photo description: Carruth

Ralph Carruth a native of Malvern, Ark., has been named director of the Materials and Processes Laboratory in the Engineering Directorate at Marshall Center. His appointment is part of a recent realignment intended to position the Marshall Center to better implement the Vision for Space Exploration. In his new position, Carruth manages the work of more than 200 NASA and contractor employees who support the Space Shuttle and International Space Station by establishing technical requirements and specifications on hardware, determining material properties, approving selection of materials for spacecraft use, and leading teams that evaluate hardware failures.

Photo: Carruth (NASA/MSFC)



Ralph Carruth a native of Malvern, Ark., has been named director of the Materials and Processes Laboratory in the Engineering Directorate at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. His appointment is part of a recent realignment intended to position the Marshall Center to better implement the Vision for Space Exploration.

In his new position, Carruth manages the work of more than 200 NASA and contractor employees who support the Space Shuttle and International Space Station by establishing technical requirements and specifications on hardware, determining material properties, approving selection of materials for spacecraft use, and leading teams that evaluate hardware failures. He previously served as deputy director of the Materials, Processes and Manufacturing Department at the Marshall Center, from 2002 to 2004.

Carruth began his NASA career in 1978 as an engineer at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. In 1981, he joined the Marshall Center, assigned to the Electronics and Control Laboratory. During his career at Marshall he has served as chief of the Physical Sciences Branch, chief of the Engineering Physics Division, and head of the Environmental Effects Group in the Materials, Processes, and Manufacturing Department.

"It is fulfilling to work on problems that must be solved to keep spacecraft like the Shuttle and the International Space Station flying," Carruth said. "The past 18 months – since the loss of the Space Shuttle Columbia and her crew — have brought many challenges forward to the Materials and Processes Laboratory. Yet, as we strive to improve the safety of the Shuttle, we are excited to be part of new technology development for future spacecraft."

Carruth graduated from Poyen High School in Poyen, Ark., in 1971. He earned a bachelor's degree in physics from the University of Central Arkansas in Conway in 1975 and a master's degree in physics from the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville in 1978. In 1989, he completed a second master's degree, specializing in theoretical physics at the University of Alabama in Huntsville.

Carruth is internationally recognized as an authority on ion propulsion and the interactions of thrusters with spacecraft. He has received dozens of awards during his career, and is considered a pioneer of techniques dealing with atomic oxygen interaction with material. He is the author or co-author of more than 40 publications in conference proceedings, professional journals and books. He is an Associate Fellow of the American Institute for Aeronautics and Astronautics.

He is the son of Melvin and Jeannette Carruth of Malvern, Ark. Carruth is married to the former Sharon Poye of Pine Bluff, Ark. The couple has three sons and a daughter. Carruth, his wife and daughter reside in Huntsville.

http://www.nasa.gov

For more information:
New flagNews release
New flagPhotos


Contact
Steve Roy
Public Affairs Office
(256) 544-0034

Graphic for line

E-mail

Get releases sent directly to you!
Contact:
Betty Humphery

Graphic for line