Astronaut alumnus aboard space shuttle flight

by William G. Gilroy

Michael Good

University of Notre Dame alumnus Michael T. Good, an Air Force colonel, is a member of the Space Shuttle Atlantis Mission STS-125 crew that lifted off today for NASA’s final mission to service the Hubble Space Telescope. The flight is Good’s first shuttle mission and he is flying as a mission specialist. He will be taking a Notre Dame pennant with him into space.

The 11-day mission will include five spacewalks to refurbish Hubble with state-of-the-art science instruments. After the visit by the seven-astronaut crew, the telescope will be 90 times more powerful than when it was launched in 1990 and should function for another five to 10 years. The mission, considered one of NASA’s most challenging yet, had been scheduled for last fall but a breakdown of the telescope delayed it.

Good, a native of Broadview Heights, Ohio, was graduated through Notre Dame’s ROTC program in 1984 with a degree in aerospace engineering and earned a master’s degree in the same field from the University in 1986. He was then assigned to Elgin Air Force Base, Fla., as a flight test engineer for the cruise missile program.

He earned his wings in 1989 as a weapons system officer and flew F-111s. In 1993, he was selected to attend the Air Force Test Pilot School at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., and was graduated the following year.

Good was selected by NASA as a mission specialist in 2000 and, following completion of two years of training and evaluation, he was assigned technical duties in the Astronaut Office Advanced Vehicles Branch and subsequently served in the Space Shuttle Branch.

Notre Dame alumnus and astronaut James D. Wetherbee, who retired from NASA in 2005, flew six times aboard the space shuttle and is the only U.S. astronaut to command five space flights.

Kevin A. Ford, a 1982 Notre Dame graduate, was named to the astronaut corps in 2000. He is assigned to serve as the pilot of Space Shuttle Discovery on the STS-128 mission targeted for launch this August.

W. Michael Hawes, a 1978 graduate, is associate administrator for program analysis and evaluation in NASA’s Office of the Administrator.

Annette P. Hasbrook, a 1985 graduate, is a lead space station flight director at NASA’s Johnson Space Center.