The Department of Engineering and Physics at Southern Arkansas University invites all to a public presentation by the renowned NASA astronaut, Lt. Col. Duane “Digger” Carey, in the Engineering Building atrium at 5PM Feb. 13.

According to a press release, in 1996, Carey was invited by NASA to join the Astronaut Corps as a space shuttle pilot.  His most noteworthy contribution was a servicing mission for the Hubble Space Telescope, a project of international cooperation between NASA and the European Space Agency. Carey and his crew successfully upgraded the telescope, leaving it with a new power unit, a new camera and new solar arrays, during which Carey orbited the Earth 165 times and covered 3.9 million miles in 11 days. The telescope is known to be “one of the most productive scientific instruments ever built.” About 4,000 astronomers from all over the world have used the telescope to probe the universe and make profound observations. It has also captured amazing photographs of deep space.

Carey received a BS in aerospace engineering and mechanics in 1981 and an MS in aerospace engineering in 1982 from the University of Minnesota. Prior to serving with NASA, he attend the Air Force Test Pilot School and served in the U.S. Air Force as a lieutenant colonel. He served as an F-16 experimental test pilot (specializing in Performance and Flying Qualities flight testing) and as a systems safety officer, leading dozens of comprehensive safety review boards for the Air Force Flight Test Center. In 22-plus years of service, he logged more than 4,300 hours of flying time in more than 35 different types of aircraft.

Prior to his lecture, Carey will speak to engineering and physics students about the technical aspects of space flights. The lecture is free to the public, and parents and children are welcome to attend.  The Department of Engineering and Physics is grateful to Arkansas IDeA Network of Biomedical Research Excellence for sponsoring this event via INBRE Research Seminar funding, which was secured by Dr. Abdel Bachri.

According to Dr. Bachri, “People have always been fascinated by the work NASA does, and the speaker does an excellent job to seal peoples’ excitement about space exploration,” Bachri said. “He is known for giving lectures that are captivating and extremely motivational. I look forward to meeting him on campus and watching him interact with our students. Through his presentation, I am sure people will see an excellent example of why maintaining an edge in science and engineering is important.”