My job at Kennedy Space Center (KSC) is amazing because I get to work with rare equipment, I am able to interface with customers in all areas of development, and I have a front-row view of the evolution of spaceflight.
I am personally responsible for our multimillion-dollar fleet of six rechargers — units that convert cryogenically cold commodities (gases super-cooled until they become liquids) from a liquid to a gaseous state and pressurize it up to 10,000 pounds per square inch gage (psig). These rechargers are routinely used to supply inert gases to customers for purging and pressurization of flight components. They are also used as contingency support for launch customers — just in case the primary systems were to fail.
Previously, I was responsible for the breathing air system used for suiting astronauts. I was able to sit in the chairs in which astronauts from Gemini, Apollo, and shuttle missions donned their flight suits hours prior to launch. It is awe-inspiring to think of what those men and women have accomplished.
I am also working at KSC during an exciting time of major transition that will shape the way we reach space. I began working here towards the end of the Shuttle Program on the replacement Constellation Program.
During the same time frame, NASA began providing incentives for companies to transport astronauts to the ISS so that NASA could focus on reaching Mars. Boeing and Space Exploration Technologies rose to the occasion and received contracts from NASA for at least four (potentially 12) trips to the ISS to ferry astronauts and supplies. Along the way, NASA also selected Lockheed Martin to build its Orion capsule for SLS here at KSC.
I have been lucky enough to hold a position where I routinely deal with these major customers. I also work with the long-time customers on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida such as the United Launch Alliance, which currently launches most of the Department of Defense’s payloads (what the rocket is carrying into space) such as the Global Positioning System satellites.
I’m thrilled to be a part of this exciting journey and to watch how AECOM and these companies transform themselves and the future of spaceflight.