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  Astronaut Joe Tanner's post-NASA career

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Author Topic:   Astronaut Joe Tanner's post-NASA career

Posts: 1933
From: MA, USA
Registered: Sep 2002

posted 09-05-2008 02:59 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for BMckay   Click Here to Email BMckay     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
NASA release
Astronaut Joe Tanner Leaves NASA

Veteran space shuttle astronaut Joe Tanner has left NASA to accept a position in the private sector. Tanner flew on four space shuttle missions and performed seven spacewalks.

"Joe has played an extremely important role for both our office and the agency as a whole throughout his many years with NASA," said Steve Lindsey, astronaut office chief. "Not only has he performed critical roles in each of his four shuttle missions, from servicing the Hubble Telescope to assembly work on the International Space Station, but his leadership and expertise have been invaluable resources to us on the ground as well. He will be missed."

Tanner's spaceflight experience includes more than 1,069 hours in space, with more than 46 hours spent spacewalking.

Selected as an astronaut in 1992, Tanner first flew aboard the space shuttle Atlantis on the STS-66 Atmospheric Laboratory for Applications and Science-3 mission in 1994. He then made two spacewalks to service the Hubble Space Telescope on STS-82 in 1997. Tanner's third mission was STS-97 in 2000 on Endeavour's flight to the International Space Station to install the first set of U.S. solar arrays, during which he did three spacewalks. On his last flight, Tanner's crew installed another set of solar arrays, continuing construction of the station on STS-115 in 2006. He conducted two spacewalks.

Robert Pearlman

Posts: 27670
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 09-17-2008 09:57 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
University of Colorado, Boulder release
Former NASA Astronaut Joe Tanner to Teach Aerospace Engineering at CU

Following a 24-year career with NASA that included four space shuttle flights and seven space walks, former astronaut Joe Tanner has set his sights on a new challenge: helping University of Colorado at Boulder students reach their academic and lifetime goals.

Tanner joined CU-Boulder's aerospace engineering sciences department last month as a senior instructor -- one of only a handful of astronauts to take on a teaching position after retiring from government service.

"I have a passion for students -- that's why I came here," said Tanner, a former Colorado resident who lived in Frisco before going to work at NASA's Johnson Space Center in 1984. "If I can help students reach their academic and life goals in some way, I really feel I've helped humanity."

This fall, Tanner will bring his considerable spaceflight and project management experience to assist with the senior projects course in aerospace engineering and to work with graduate student projects in preparation for overseeing the master's projects course next semester. He also hopes to be involved with the BioServe Space Technologies research center in the future.

Aerospace engineering sciences Chair Jeffrey Forbes is especially enthusiastic about Tanner's arrival: "Joe's leadership in our student projects arena launches the educational component of our new AeroSpace Systems Science and Engineering initiative, which will be developing over the next few years." The cross-disciplinary initiative seeks to better integrate the engineering of aerospace vehicles and sensor systems with earth and space science applications.

Tanner's direct involvement with NASA engineering and science missions will continue next month as he heads back to the Johnson Space Center for the mid-October launch of NASA's fifth and final Hubble Space Telescope servicing mission. The mission involves five spacewalks and a $70 million instrument known as the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph, designed by CU-Boulder.

Two of Tanner's seven spacewalks were performed in 1997 to improve the science capability of the Hubble Space Telescope, and he has worked closely with the current mission crew over the last year as an instructor in the Astronaut Office. Tanner will monitor flight activities from Mission Control to advise the extravehicular activity, or EVA, team as necessary throughout the five spacewalks. "The crew tells me they will feel a lot better with me still being part of the team," he said.

Tanner earned his bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering at the University of Illinois in 1973. He joined the Navy after graduation where he earned his pilot wings in 1975, served as an A-7E light-attack pilot aboard the USS Coral Sea, and completed active service as an advanced jet instructor pilot in Pensacola, Fla.

Tanner started working for NASA in 1984 as an aerospace engineer and research pilot, with duties that included teaching Space Shuttle landing techniques to astronaut pilots.

He was selected as an astronaut candidate in 1992, and has logged 1,069 hours in space, including over 46 EVA hours in seven space walks. He served as a mission specialist on flights in 1994, 1997, 2000 and 2006. The latter two, in which Tanner made a total of five spacewalks, were assembly missions to the International Space Station.

Tanner looks forward to bringing his years of operational experience with the Navy and NASA to help the university launch the AeroSpace Systems Science and Engineering initiative.


Posts: 4831
From: Brussels, Belgium
Registered: Jan 2001

posted 09-17-2008 01:30 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Philip   Click Here to Email Philip     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Does anybody know the military rank astronaut Joe Tanner had in the US Navy when he retired? The NASA biography website doesn't mention it.


Posts: 973
Registered: Aug 2002

posted 09-08-2013 12:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for MarylandSpace   Click Here to Email MarylandSpace     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Was Joe Tanner a Captain in the Navy?


Posts: 333
From: San Antonio TX, USA
Registered: Apr 2004

posted 09-08-2013 02:21 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for SpaceSteve   Click Here to Email SpaceSteve     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
His NASA bio says he joined the Navy after graduating from the University of Illinois in 1973, earned his pilot wings in 1975, and was an instructor pilot in Training Squadron Four in Pensacola Florida when he left active duty. Further, he "only" has a Bachelor's Degree.

Taking all that into consideration, I would say he probably was a Lieutenant (O-3), maybe a Lieutenant Commander (O-4) when he separated. It does not appear that he served long enough to "retire". I also doubt he would have made it too high in rank due to his not having a Master's Degree.

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