Kathryn Sullivan is a former NASA astronaut. Her full name is Kathryn Dwyer Sullivan. She was born on October 3, 1951, in Paterson, New Jersey. She became the first American women to perform a 3.5 hours spacewalk. She was a part of the space shuttle crew that deployed the Hubble Space Telescope.
This five-day mission took place in April 1990. The team completed 76 orbits of the earth in approximately 121 hours. Deployment of one of the most famous satellites started a new era of space exploration. Sullivan also served in the US Navy Reserve as an oceanographer from 1988 to 2006.
Quick Facts: –
- Kathryn Sullivan received a bachelor’s degree in Earth science from the University of California in 1973.
- Then she received a doctorate degree in Geology from Dalhousie University in the year 1978.
- Sullivan was selected by NASA in January 1978 and in 1979 she officially became an astronaut.
- Kathryn was appointed as a mission specialist on STS-41G in 1984.
- It was her first space flight which took place on October 5, 1984. It was launched from Kennedy Space Center, Florida.
- STS-31 was her second space flight which was launched on April 24, 1990.
- STS-45 was her third and last space flight which took place on March 24, 1992. She was a payload commander on this flight.
- She completed three successful flights in the space shuttles Discovery, Challenger, and Atlantis. She spent a total of 532 hours in space.
- In 1993, she left NASA and joined NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) as the chief scientist.
- Kathryn received the Woman of Distinction in 2002 and in 2004, was elected to the Astronaut Hall of Fame.
- She was appointed as a member of the National Science Board by President George W. Bush.
- In 2011, she was appointed as the Deputy Administrator of NOAA by President Barack Obama.
- In 2014, Sullivan accepted the position of the Head of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.