The Boeing Company today announced that Christopher J. Ferguson, a retired U.S. Navy captain and former NASA astronaut, has been named director of Commercial Crew Interface in the company's Space Exploration division, effective Dec. 16.
Ferguson, a veteran of three space shuttle missions, will report to John Mulholland, Space Exploration vice president and the program manager for Commercial Programs.
"Chris' extraordinary managerial and spaceflight experience will be a significant asset to our team as we advance our development of the Commercial Crew Transportation System," said Mulholland. "He will help us address all aspects of human spaceflight requirements, not only for trained NASA astronauts but also for a broad spectrum of people interested in accessing low Earth orbit."
Ferguson will have comprehensive oversight for crew integration and operations in the design of Boeing's Commercial Crew Transportation System. In this capacity, he will work with NASA's Human Exploration and Operations Directorate; Johnson Space Center's Engineering, Flight Crew, and Mission Operations organizations; and Kennedy Space Center's Commercial Crew Program to ensure the design supports NASA Human Rating Requirements.
Ferguson also will have a leadership role in the development and testing of system concepts and key technologies for Boeing's Crew Space Transportation (CST-100) spacecraft, as well as integrated launch and ground systems.
The CST-100 spacecraft – comprised of a crew module and service module – relies on materials and subsystem technologies that are proven and affordable. The CST-100 is designed to carry up to seven people, or a combination of people and cargo, and is compatible with a variety of expendable launch vehicles. By enabling development of a safe, reliable and cost-effective solution for crew transportation to and from the International Space Station, CST-100 ensures that the on-orbit research facility will continue to fulfill its promise as a world class laboratory.
Ferguson comes to Boeing with space shuttle experience as pilot of STS-115 (Atlantis) and commander of STS-126 (Endeavour) and the final shuttle mission, STS-135 (Atlantis). He has logged more than 40 days in space. He also served as deputy chief of the Astronaut Office and was spacecraft communicator (CAPCOM) for missions STS-118, -120, -128 and -129. His experience in crew communications, both on orbit and in the CAPCOM role, is essential to his new role at Boeing.
Ferguson earned his Bachelor of Science in mechanical engineering from Drexel University in Philadelphia and his Master of Science in aeronautical engineering from the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, Calif. He has been recognized with numerous service awards and citations, including the Legion of Merit, Distinguished Flying Cross, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Navy Strike/Flight Air Medal, NASA Space Flight Medal (three), Navy Commendation Medal (three) and the Navy Achievement Medal.
A unit of The Boeing Company, Boeing Defense, Space & Security is one of the world's largest defense, space and security businesses specializing in innovative and capabilities-driven customer solutions, and the world's largest and most versatile manufacturer of military aircraft. Headquartered in St. Louis, Boeing Defense, Space & Security is a $32 billion business with 63,000 employees worldwide.