Suggested Searches

Franklin R. Chang-Díaz

Dr. Chang-Díaz is a veteran of seven space shuttle missions and holds a doctorate in applied plasma physics. His work as a scientist astronaut helped foster closer ties between the astronaut corp and the science community.

Quick Facts


Franklin R. Chang-Díaz

Selected by NASA as part of the 1980 class of Space Shuttle astronauts, Dr. Chang-Diaz first flew as a mission specialist on the STS-61C mission in 1986. HIs 25-year career as an astronaut included seven space shuttle missions and serving as the Director of the NASA Advanced Space Propulsion Laboratory from 1994-2005 where he led the early development of the VASIMR® rocket engine. After retiring from NASA, Chang-Diaz founded the Ad Astra Rocket Company to continue his work to build sustainable, efficient, and high-power propulsion systems.

Learn More about Franklin R. Chang-Díaz
Franklin Chang-Diaz holding a taco on the middeck of the Space Shuttle Columbia
STS-75 payload commander Franklin R. Chang-Diaz holding a taco at the galley on the middeck of the Earth-orbiting Space Shuttle Columbia. (February 1996)
Featured Story

Special Session with Dr. Franklin Chang Díaz, Former NASA Astronaut

Hispanic Heritage Month (HHM) 2020

Read the Story
Keep Exploring

Discover More Topics From NASA