|MICHAEL A. BAKER|
Born: October 27, 1953 in Memphis, Tennessee
Michael A. Baker (Captain, United States
International Space Station Program Manager for
International and Crew Operations Johnson Space Center
Shuttle Mission(s): STS-43, STS-52, STS-68, STS-81
ORGANIZATIONS: Member of the Society of Experimental Test Pilots and the
Association of Space Explorers.
SPECIAL HONORS: Awarded the Defense Superior Service Medal, 2 Defense
Meritorious Service Medals, the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Legion of Merit,
the Navy Unit Commendation, 3 Meritorious Unit Commendations, the Battle "E"
Award, NASA Distinguished Service Medal, NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal, NASA
Exceptional Service Medal, 4 NASA Space Flight Medals, 3 Navy Expeditionary
Medals, the National Defense Medal, 2 Sea Service Awards, and the Overseas
Service Award. Named 1993 Outstanding University of Texas Alumni.
EXPERIENCE: After graduation from the University of Texas, Baker completed
flight training and earned his Wings of Gold at Naval Air Station Chase Field,
Beeville, Texas, in 1977. In 1978, he was assigned to Attack Squadron 56,
embarked in the USS Midway, homeported in Yokosuka, Japan, where he flew the
A-7E Corsair II. In late 1980 he was assigned to Carrier Air Wing 30 as the air
wing landing signal officer. He attended the U.S. Naval Test Pilot School in
1981 and, after graduation, was assigned to the Carrier Suitability Branch of
the Strike Aircraft Test Directorate. While there, Baker conducted carrier
suitability structural tests, aircraft carrier catapult and arresting gear
certification tests, and automatic carrier landing system certification and
verification tests on the various aircraft carriers of the Navy's fleet in the
A-7 aircraft. In 1983, he returned to the U.S. Naval Test Pilot School as an
instructor. He was then assigned as the U.S. Navy exchange instructor at the
Empire Test Pilots School in Boscombe Down, England, teaching performance,
flying qualities and systems flight test techniques.
He has logged over 5,400 hours flying time in approximately 50 different
types of airplanes, including tactical jets, VSTOL, multi-engine transport and
rotary wing aircraft, and has over 300 carrier landings to his credit.
NASA EXPERIENCE: Selected by NASA in June 1985, Baker became an astronaut in
July 1986 upon completion of a one-year training and evaluation program.
Following the Challenger accident, from January 1986 to December 1987, Baker
was assigned as a member of the team that was pursuing redesign, modification
and improvements to the Shuttle Landing and Deceleration Systems, including
nosewheel steering, brakes, tires, and drag chute, in an effort to provide
greater safety margins during landing and rollout. He was then assigned to the
Shuttle Avionics Integration Laboratory (SAIL), where he was involved in the
checkout and verification of the computer software and hardware interfaces for
STS-26 (the return-to-flight mission) and subsequent flights.
Baker then served as an ascent, entry and orbit spacecraft communicator
(CAPCOM) for STS-27, STS-29, STS-30, STS-28, STS-34, STS-33, STS-32, STS-36,
STS-31, STS-38, and STS-35. In this capacity his duties included communication
with the Shuttle crew during simulations and actual missions, as well as working
procedural problems and modifications between missions. He served as the leader
of the Astronaut Support Personnel team at the Kennedy Space Center for Shuttle
Missions STS-44, STS-42 and STS-45. From December 1992 to January 1994 he was
assigned as the Flight Crew Operations Directorate Representative to the Space
Shuttle Program Office. From March to October 1995 he served as the Director of
Operations for NASA at the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center in Star City,
Russia. He was responsible for the coordination and implementation of mission
operation activities in the Moscow region for the joint U.S./Russian Shuttle/Mir
From October 1997 to August 2001 he was the Assistant Director of Johnson
Space Center (JSC) for Human Space Flight Programs, Russia and was responsible
for implementation and integration of NASA's Human space flight programs in
Russia. Those activities included International Space Station (ISS) training,
operations, technical liaison, logistics and personnel administration support.
He also served as the NASA JSC representative to the Russian Space Agency,
Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center, Star City; Mission Control Center-Moscow,
Energia Rocket and Spacecraft Corporation, Krunichev State Scientific and
Production Space Center and other Russian government agencies and manufacturers
involved in the ISS program.
A veteran of four space flights, Baker has logged 965 hours in space. He
served as pilot on STS-43 (August 2-11, 1991) and STS-52 (October 22 to November
1, 1992), and was the mission commander on STS-68 (September 30 to October 11,
1994) and STS-81 (January 12-22, 1997).
Mike Baker is currently assigned as the International Space Station Program
Manager for International and Crew Operations and is responsible for the
coordination of program operations, integration and flight crew training and
support activities with the International Partners.
SPACE FLIGHT EXPERIENCE: STS-43 Space Shuttle Atlantis launched from the
Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on August 2, 1991. During the flight, crew
members deployed the fifth Tracking and Data Relay Satellite (TDRS-E), in
addition to conducting 32 physical, material, and life science experiments,
mostly relating to the Extended Duration Orbiter and Space Station Freedom.
After 142 orbits of the Earth, the 9-day mission concluded with a landing on
Runway 15 at the Kennedy Space Center on August 11, 1991. Mission duration was
213 hours, 21 minutes, 25 seconds.
STS-52 Space Shuttle Columbia launched from the Kennedy Space Center,
Florida, on October 22, 1992. During the mission crew members deployed the
Italian Laser Geodynamic Satellite (LAGEOS) that will be used to measure
movement of the Earth's crust, and operated the U.S. Microgravity Payload 1
(USMP-1). Additionally, the Space Vision System (SVS) developed by the Canadian
Space Agency was tested by the Canadian payload specialist and the crew using a
small target assembly that was released from the remote manipulator system. The
SVS will be used for Space Station construction. These three primary payloads
together with numerous other payloads operated by the crew encompassed
geophysics, materials science, biological research and applied research for
Space Station Freedom. Following 159 orbits of the Earth, the 10-day mission
concluded with a landing on Runway 33 at the Kennedy Space Center on November 1,
1992. Mission duration was 236 hours, 56 minutes, 13 seconds.
STS-68 Space Shuttle Endeavour launched from the Kennedy Space Center,
Florida, on September 30, 1994. This flight was the second flight of the Space
Radar Laboratory (SRL) comprised of a large radar called SIR-C/X-SAR (Shuttle
Imaging Radar-C/X-Band Synthetic Aperture Radar) and MAPS (Measurement of Air
Pollution from Satellites). As part of NASA's Mission to Planet Earth, SRL was
an international, multidisciplinary study of global environmental change, both
natural and man-made. The primary objective was to radar map the surface of the
Earth to help us understand the contributions of ecology, hydrology, geology,
and oceanography to changes in our Planet's environment. Real-time crew
observations of environmental conditions, along with over 14,000 photographs,
aided in interpretation of the radar images. This SRL mission was a highly
successful test of technology intended for long-term environmental and
geological monitoring of planet Earth. Following 183 orbits of the Earth, the
eleven-day mission concluded with a landing on Runway 22 at Edwards Air Force
Base, California, on October 11, 1994. Mission duration was 269 hours, 46
minutes, 10 seconds.
STS-81 Space Shuttle Atlantis launched from the Kennedy Space Center, Florida
on January 12, 1997. STS-81 was the fifth in a series of joint missions between
the U.S. Space Shuttle and the Russian Space Station Mir and the second one
involving an exchange of U.S. astronauts. In five days of docked operations more
than three tons of food, water, experiment equipment and samples were moved back
and forth between the two spacecraft. Following 160 orbits of the Earth the
STS-81 mission concluded with a landing on Kennedy Space Center's Runway 33
ending a 3.9 million mile journey. Mission duration was 244 hours, 56 minutes.