NAME: William B. Lenoir (Ph.D.)
NASA Astronaut (former)
PERSONAL DATA: Born on March 14, 1939, in Miami, Florida. Divorced. Two grown children. Recreational interests include sailing, wood-working, and outdoor activities.
EDUCATION: Attended primary and secondary schools in Coral Gables, Florida; is a graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he received a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering in 1961, a master of science degree in 1962, and a doctor of philosophy degree in 1965.
ORGANIZATIONS: Senior member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers; and member of American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Eta Kappa Nu, and the Society of Sigma Xi.
SPECIAL HONORS: Sloan Scholar at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and winner of the Carleton E. Tucker Award for Teaching Excellence at MIT; awarded the NASA Exceptional Service Medal (1974), and NASA Space Flight Medal (1982).
EXPERIENCE: From 1964 to 1965, Lenoir was an instructor
at MIT; and in 1965, he was named assistant professor of electrical engineering.
His work at MIT included teaching electromagnetic theory and systems theory as
well as performing research in remote sensing. He was an investigator in several
satellite experiments and continued research in this area while fulfilling his
Lenoir is a registered professional engineer in Texas.
He has logged over 3,000 hours of flying time in jet aircraft.
NASA EXPERIENCE: Dr. Lenoir was selected as a
scientist-astronaut by NASA in August 1967. He completed the initial academic
training and a 53-week course in flight training at Laughlin Air Force Base,
Lenoir was backup science-pilot for Skylab 3 and Skylab 4, the second and third manned missions in the Skylab Program. During Skylab 4, he was co-leader of the visual observations project and coordinator between the flight crew and the principal investigators for the solar science experiments.
From September 1974 to July 1976, Lenoir spent approximately one-half of his time as leader of the NASA Satellite Power Team. This team was formed to investigate the potential of large-scale satellite power systems for terrestrial utility consumption and to make program recommendations to NASA Headquarters. Lenoir supported the Space Shuttle program in the areas of orbit operations, training, extravehicular activity, and payload deployment and retrieval.
Dr. Lenoir flew as a mission specialist on the STS-5 (November 11-16, 1982, the first flight to deploy commercial satellites, and has logged over 122 hours in space. Following STS-5, Dr. Lenoir was responsible for the direction and management of mission development within the Astronaut Office.
Dr. Lenoir resigned from NASA in September 1984, to assume a position with the management and technology consulting firm of Booz, Allen & Hamilton, Inc. in Arlington, Virginia. He returned to NASA in June 1989 as the Associate Administrator for Space Flight, responsible for the development, operating and implementation of the necessary policy for the Space Shuttle and all U.S. government civil launch activities.
Dr. Lenoir resigned from NASA in April 1992, to assume the position of Vice President of the Applied Systems Division at Booz, Allen & Hamilton, Inc. in Bethesda, Maryland.
SPACE FLIGHT EXPERIENCE: STS-5 Columbia launched from Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on November 11, 1982. This was the first operational flight of the Spaceship Columbia and became known as the "We Deliver" mission. Two commercial communications satellites with Payload Assist Module upper stages (PAM-D) were successfully deployed from the Orbiter's cargo bay, a new first. This activity was shared with the world when the onboard television tape was played to the control center later that evening. In addition to collecting precise data to document the Shuttle's performance during launch, boost, orbit, atmospheric entry and landing phases, STS-5 carried a Getaway Special experiment, three Student Involvement Project experiments, and medical experiments. STS-5 was the last flight to carry the Development Flight Instrumentation (DFI) package to support flight testing. The STS-5 crew successfully concluded the 5-day orbital flight of Columbia with the first entry and landing through a cloud deck to a hard-surface runway, demonstrating maximum braking. STS-5 completed 81 orbits of the Earth before landing at Edwards Air Force Base, California, on November 16, 1982.
Continued maintenance of the Skylab space station and extensive scientific and medical experiments. Installed twinpole solar shield on EVA; performed major inflight maintenance; doubled record for length of time in space. Completed 858 Earth orbits and 1,081 hours of solar and Earth experiments; three EVAs totalled 13 hours, 43 minutes.
The space vehicle, consisting of a modified Apollo command and service module payload on a Saturn IB launch vehicle, was inserted into a 231.3 by 154.7 km orbit. Rendezvous maneuvers were performed during the first five orbits as planned. During the rendezvous, the CSM reaction control system forward firing engine oxidizer valve leaked. The quad was isolated. Station-keeping with the Saturn Workshop began approximately 8 hours after liftoff, with docking being performed about 30 minutes later.
Final Skylab mission; included observation and photography of Comet Kohoutek among numerous experiments. Completed 1,214 Earth orbits and four EVAs totalling 22 hours, 13 minutes. Increased manned space flight time record by 50%. Rebellion by crew against NASA Ground Control overtasking led to none of the crew ever flying again. Biological experiments included two Mummichog fish (Fundulus heteroclitus).
The space vehicle consisted of a modified Apollo CSM and a Saturn IB launch vehicle. All launch phase events were normal, and the CSM was inserted into a 150.1- by 227.08-km orbit. The rendezvous sequence was performed according to the anticipated timeline. Stationkeeping was initiated about seven and one-half hours after liftoff, and hard docking was achieved about 30 minutes later following two unsuccessful docking attempts. Planned duration of the mission was 56 days, with the option of extending it to a maximum of 84 days.
After completion of the three programmed Skylab flights, NASA considered using the remaining backup Saturn IB and Apollo CSM to fly a fourth manned mission to Skylab. It would have been a short 20 day mission - the CSM systems would not have been powered down. Main objective would be to conduct some new scientific experiments and boost Skylab into a higher orbit for later use by the shuttle. The marginal cost of such a mission would have been incredibly low; but NASA was confident that Skylab would stay in orbit until shuttle flights began in 1978 - 1979. But the shuttle was delayed, and faster atmospheric decay than expected resulted in Skylab crashing to earth before the first shuttle mission was flown.
Manned four crew. First mission to deploy commercial communications satellites (SBS 3, Anik C3). Payloads: : Satellite Business Systems (SBS)-C with Payload Assist ; (PAM)-D; Telesat-E (Canadian communications satellite) with PAM-D. Monodisperse Latex Reactor (MLR), Continuous Flow Electrophoresis System (CFES), three getaway specials (GAS), Student experiments, GLOW experiment, Vestibular experiment, Oxygen Interaction With Materials experiment.