Date: Sept. 25, 2012
Time: 1:00 - 1:45 p.m. EDT
Topic: Life as an Astronaut
Career: Astronaut: a person trained to pilot, navigate, or otherwise participate as a crewmember of a spacecraft.
During this live video chat, NASA Explorer Schools offered students in grades 4-12 an opportunity to ask questions of astronaut and Director of NASA's Kennedy Space Center Bob Cabana about his education, astronaut training, living and working in space and the future of space exploration.
Cabana completed initial astronaut training in July 1986, qualifying as a space shuttle pilot. His initial assignment was as the Astronaut Office space shuttle flight software coordinator until November 1986. At that time, he was assigned as the deputy chief of aircraft operations for the Johnson Space Center, where he served for two and a half years. He then served as the lead astronaut in the Shuttle Avionics Integration Laboratory, where the orbiter's flight software was tested prior to flight. Cabana has served as a capsule communicator in Mission Control during space shuttle missions. Prior to his assignment to command STS-88, Cabana served for three years as the chief of NASA's Astronaut Office. After joining the International Space Station Program in October 1999, Cabana served as manager for International Operations. From August 2001 to September 2002, he served as director, Human Space Flight Programs, Russia. As NASA's lead representative to the Russian Aviation and Space Agency, Rosaviakosmos, and its contractors, he provided oversight of all human space flight operations, logistics and technical functions, including NASA's mission operations in Korolev and crew training at the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center in Star City.
A veteran of four space flights, Cabana has logged more than 910 hours in space. He served as pilot on STS-41 (Oct. 6-10, 1990) and STS-53 (Dec. 2- 9, 1992) and was mission commander on STS-65 (July 8- 23, 1994) and STS-88 (Dec. 4- 15, 1998), the first International Space Station assembly mission. Cabana currently serves as the director of NASA's Kennedy Space Center.
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