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NASA - THEMIS Program Scientist, Southwest Research Institute
January 16, 2007

Dr. Craig J. Pollack

A.A. in Liberal Arts, Hudson Valley Community College, 1977
B.A. in Physics, Siena College, 1980
Ph.D. in Physics, University of New Hampshire, 1987

Dr. Pollock completed undergraduate studies at Siena College in Loudonville, NY and was awarded the B.A. in Physics in 1980. At Siena College, Dr. Pollock built and operated a long period seismograph, successfully recording signatures from major earthquakes located in Japan and Alaska during the winter and spring of 1980. He earned his Ph.D. in Physics, studying under Professor R.L. Arnoldy at the University of New Hampshire in 1987, where he was a full participant in Professor Arnoldy's auroral sounding rocket program. His activities included scientific payload design, the design, testing, and calibration of auroral photometers and charged particle spectrometers, analysis of the in situ data, and publication of the scientific results.

image of Dr. Craig J. Pollack
Dr. Craig J. Pollack

Dr. Pollock joined SwRI in June 1996. Here, he has served as Principal Investigator in the development of very low energy ion and electron spectrometers for flight on NASA sounding rockets, lead Co-Investigator for the development of the Medium Energy Neutral Atom (MENA) imager for flight on NASA's IMAGE satellite, Co-Investigator for the NASA's Two Wide Angle Imaging Neutral-atom spectrometers (TWINS), Co-Investigator for NASA's Polar/TIDE Mission Operations and Data Analysis activities, and has been nominated as a Co-Investigator for the Ion and Electron Sensor (IES) on the European Space agency's Rosetta Mission to Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. In all these activities, Dr. Pollock brought both instrument and topical scientific expertise to the table.

Since January 2005, Dr. Pollock has served at NASA Headquarters in Washington DC, as Discipline Scientist for Magnetospheric Physics, within the Heliophysics Division. In that capacity, he manages NASA's grants programs in his discipline, serves as Program Scientist for several of NASA's Heliophysics missions, both ongoing and under development, and participates in the NASA scientific roadmapping and strategic planning processes. These experiences have provided broad exposure to NASA mission advocacy and development process.

Prior to joining SwRI, Dr. Pollock was a member of the NASA/MSFC Space Plasma Physics Branch, having first come to MSFC as an NRC Research Associate in 1987. At MSFC he analyzed DE-1 RIMS thermal ion data, concentrating on terrestrial ion outflows from the dayside auroral zone. His principle focus at MSFC was in the area of space plasma instrument development. As Experiment Scientist for the Thermal Ion Dynamics Experiment (TIDE), he was a central participant in its scientific design, test and calibration, and integration onto NASA's GGS Polar satellite. Dr. Pollock was the Principle Investigator in the development of the Thermal Electron Capped Hemisphere Spectrometer (TECHS) and the Scanning Thermal Ion Composition Spectrometer (STICS) which were provide for flight on NASA's SCIFER (Sounding of the Cleft Ion Fountain Energization Region) sounding rocket in January 1995. Dr. Pollock's primary interests are low energy charged particle and energetic neutral atom measurements, directed toward understanding relevant plasma processes in space and laboratory plasmas. He has authored or co-authored more than 60 refereed research publications in these areas.

PROFESSIONAL CHRONOLOGY: Teaching and Research Assistant, 1980-87, University of New Hampshire; NRC Research Associate, 1987-88, NASA/MSFC; AST, Atmospheres and Ionospheres, 1989-96, NASA/MSFC Space Plasma Physics Branch; Principal Scientist, 1996 - 2001, Instrumentation and Space Research Division, Southwest Research Institute, Staff Scientist, 2001 – present, Space Science and Engineering Division, Southwest Research Institute.

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