IBX Hires Former NASA Acting Administrator Steve Jurczyk as Executive VP of Space Operations

Steve Jurczyk

ROCKVILLE, Md. (IBX PR) — IBX, an innovation and investment firm revolutionizing the space and energy sectors, announced today the addition of Steve Jurczyk as Executive Vice President of Space Operations. Jurczyk, who recently served as NASA’s Acting Administrator after a 33-year career at the U.S. space agency, will add his technical and leadership expertise to the IBX team, expanding efforts to explore market opportunities in space, technology, and energy to positively impact the world. 

“We are delighted Steve Jurczyk is joining the IBX team, bringing a wealth of knowledge and his highly valued perspective about the aerospace industry to our strategic growth efforts of building the next-generation commercial space economy,” said Kam Ghaffarian, Founder and CEO of IBX. “Steve’s focus on innovation and leading breakthrough teams at NASA and across the country helped open the door to this new era in space exploration. We are lucky to have him on our IBX team.” 

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Steve Jurczyk Retires as NASA Associate Administrator

Steve Jurczyk

WASHINGTON (NASA PR) — Steve Jurczyk, who served as acting NASA administrator from Jan. 20 to May 3, 2021, announced Monday he will retire on Friday, May 14, after more than three decades of service at NASA.

Jurczyk has served as associate administrator, the agency’s highest-ranking civil servant, since May 2018. He was the highest-ranking career civil servant leading NASA throughout the pandemic and most recently oversaw the successful landing of the Perseverance rover on Mars, a successful Green Run test of the core stage of the Space Launch System rocket, the naming of the Mary W. Jackson NASA Headquarters building, the launch of NASA’s SpaceX Crew-2 to the International Space Station, and the return of Crew-1 back to Earth.

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NASA Statement on Nomination of Pam Melroy for Agency Deputy Administrator

The following is a statement from Acting NASA Administrator Steve Jurczyk on Friday’s announcement of the intended nomination by President Joe Biden of former NASA astronaut Pam Melroy to serve as the agency’s deputy administrator:

“Pam’s experience as an astronaut, space shuttle commander, and U.S. Air Force test pilot would bring to NASA a unique perspective on the opportunities and challenges facing the agency. Pam is driven by a desire to solve the biggest issues here on Earth, throughout the solar system, and beyond. She is a proven leader with bold vision and, if confirmed by the Senate, I look forward to working with her and Sen. Nelson to ensure NASA’s future success.”

One of only two women to command a space shuttle, Melroy logged more than 38 days in space. All three of her missions were assembly missions to build the International Space Station. After serving more than two decades in the Air Force and as a NASA astronaut, Melroy took on a number of leadership roles, including at Lockheed Martin, the Federal Aviation Administration, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, Nova Systems Pty, Australia, and as an advisor to the Australian Space Agency. She currently is an independent consultant and a member of the National Space Council’s Users Advisory Group.

Melroy’s agency bio is available at:

https://www.nasa.gov/sites/default/files/atoms/files/melroy_pamela.pdf

For information about NASA’s missions, discoveries, and activities, visit:

https://www.nasa.gov

NASA to Announce SpaceX Human Lunar Landing System Contract at 4 p.m. Friday

An astronaut descends the ladder to explore the lunar surface. (Credit: NASA)

HOUSTON (NASA PR) — NASA will host a media teleconference at 4 p.m. EDT today, Friday, April 16, to announce the company or companies selected to move forward in developing a single-source contract to SpaceX to develop a modern human landing system (HLS) that will carry the next two American astronauts to the surface of the Moon and pave the way for sustainable lunar exploration under the Artemis program.

Tune in for a special announcement followed by a livestream of the teleconference audio at:

http://www.nasa.gov/live

Participating in the teleconference are:

  • Acting NASA Administrator Steve Jurczyk
  • Kathy Lueders, associate administrator for NASA’s Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate
  • Mark Kirasich, deputy associate administrator for NASA’s Advanced Exploration Systems division
  • Lisa Watson-Morgan, HLS program manager
  • Tyler Cochran, HLS contracting officer

The HLS is a vital part of NASA’s deep space exploration plans, along with the Space Launch System rocket, Orion spacecraft, ground systems, and Gateway. NASA is committed to using a commercial HLS to carry the first woman and first person of color to the surface of the Moon during Artemis missions, leading a path to sustainable exploration and preparing humanity for the next giant leap, human exploration of Mars.

For more information about the Artemis program, visit:

https://www.nasa.gov/artemis

Coverage Set for NASA’s SpaceX Crew-2 Briefings, Events, Broadcasts

Crew-2 members Megan McArthur, Thomas Pesquet, Akihiko Hoshide and Shane Kimbrough. (Credit: NASA)

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. (NASA PR) — NASA will provide coverage of the upcoming prelaunch and launch activities for the agency’s SpaceX Crew-2 mission with astronauts to the International Space Station. This is the second crew rotation flight of the SpaceX Crew Dragon and the first with two international partners. The flight follows certification by NASA for regular flights to the space station as part of the agency’s Commercial Crew Program.

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NASA Statement on Nomination of Bill Nelson for Agency Administrator

U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, center, and former astronaut Chris Ferguson survey a mockup of the CST-100 spacecraft under development by The Boeing Company during a ceremony detailing Boeing’s plans to use Orbiter Processing Facility-3 as a manufacturing hub for the capsule-shaped spacecraft. (Credit: NASA/Kim Shiflett)

WASHINGTON (NASA PR) — Acting NASA Administrator Steve Jurczyk released the following statement after today’s nomination by President Joe Biden of Bill Nelson to serve as the 14th NASA administrator:

“I’m pleased President Biden has nominated former U.S. Senator Bill Nelson to lead our agency. Bill has a proven history of supporting our work here at NASA, and has helped advance America’s position in human exploration, science, aeronautics, and technology. While the Senate must confirm the nomination, I look forward to continuing to work with Bill and the Biden-Harris administration to carry out NASA’s many critical missions in the years to come.

“The men and women at NASA are an incredible national asset and will continue to take on the most pressing issues facing our country. As we look to the future – and with Bill at the helm – we will continue to take on and find solutions to problems once thought unsolvable, and educate and inspire the next generation of American scientists, engineers, and workers.”

Nelson represented Florida in the Senate from 2001-19 where he served as ranking member on the Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee. Previously, he represented Florida’s 9th and 11th Congressional Districts in the U.S. House of Representatives. While chair of the House space subcommittee, Nelson flew aboard the space shuttle Columbia as a payload specialist on the STS-61C mission in 1986. He was appointed to the NASA Advisory Council by former Administrator Jim Bridenstine in May 2019.

For information about NASA’s missions, discoveries and activities, visit:

https://www.nasa.gov

NASA, SpaceX Sign Joint Spaceflight Safety Agreement

An illustration showing some of the many NASA satellites in Earth orbit (Credits: NASA)

WASHINGTON (NASA PR) — NASA and SpaceX have signed a joint agreement to formalize both parties’ strong interest in the sharing of information to maintain and improve space safety. This agreement enables a deeper level of coordination, cooperation, and data sharing, and defines the arrangement, responsibilities, and procedures for flight safety coordination.

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NASA Mega Moon Rocket Passes Key Test, Readies for Launch

The core stage for the first flight of NASA’s Space Launch System rocket is seen in the B-2 Test Stand during a second hot fire test, Thursday, March 18, 2021, at NASA’s Stennis Space Center near Bay St. Louis, Mississippi. The four RS-25 engines fired for the full-duration of 8 minutes during the test and generated 1.6 million pounds of thrust. The hot fire test is the final stage of the Green Run test series, a comprehensive assessment of the Space Launch System’s core stage prior to launching the Artemis I mission to the Moon. (Credits: NASA/Robert Markowitz)

BAY ST. LOUIS, Miss. (NASA PR) — The largest rocket element NASA has ever built, the core stage of NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) rocket, fired its four RS-25 engines for 8 minutes and 19 seconds Thursday at NASA’s Stennis Space Center near Bay St. Louis, Mississippi. The successful test, known as a hot fire, is a critical milestone ahead of the agency’s Artemis I mission, which will send an uncrewed Orion spacecraft on a test flight around the Moon and back to Earth, paving the way for future Artemis missions with astronauts.

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NASA Celebrates ‘Hidden Figure’ Mary W. Jackson With Building Naming Ceremony

Bryan Jackson, grandson of Mary W. Jackson, left, and Raymond Lewis, son-in-law of Mary W. Jackson, right, unveil the Mary W. Jackson NASA Headquarters sign during a ceremony officially naming the building, Friday, Feb. 26, 2021, at NASA Headquarters in Washington, DC. Mary W. Jackson, the first African American female engineer at NASA, began her career with the agency in the segregated West Area Computing Unit of NASA’s Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia. The mathematician and aerospace engineer went on to lead programs influencing the hiring and promotion of women in NASA’s science, technology, engineering, and mathematics careers. In 2019, she posthumously received the Congressional Gold Medal. (Credits: NASA/Joel Kowsky)

WASHINGTON (NASA PR) — On Friday, NASA celebrated the agency’s first African American female engineer, Mary W. Jackson, with a ceremony to formally name the agency’s headquarters building in Washington in her honor.

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Touchdown! NASA’s Mars Perseverance Rover Safely Lands on Red Planet

A low-resolution image of the Perseverance rover’s landing site taken by an engineering camera. Dust stirred up by the landing partially obscures the terrain. (Credit: NASA)

PASADENA, Calif. (NASA PR) — The largest, most advanced rover NASA has sent to another world touched down on Mars Thursday, after a 203-day journey traversing 293 million miles (472 million kilometers). Confirmation of the successful touchdown was announced in mission control at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California at 3:55 p.m. EST (12:55 p.m. PST).

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NASA Announces New Role of Senior Climate Advisor

Gavin Schmidt, acting senior climate advisor (Credits: NASA)

WASHINGTON (NASA PR) — In an effort to ensure effective fulfillment of the Biden Administration’s climate science objectives for NASA, the agency has established a new position of senior climate advisor and selected Gavin Schmidt, director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York, to serve in the role in an acting capacity until a permanent appointment is made.

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Steve Jurczyk Appointed Acting NASA Administrator

Steve Jurczyk (Credit: NASA)

WASHINGTON (NASA PR) — Steve Jurczyk became NASA’s acting administrator on Jan. 20, 2021. Before that, Jurczyk had served as NASA’s associate administrator, the agency’s highest-ranking civil servant, since May 2018.

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NASA to Provide Update on James Webb Space Telescope

Following the complete assembly of NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope, testing teams performed a comprehensive systems evaluation which allowed them to confidently assess Webb’s software and electronic performance as a single fully connected vehicle. (Credits: NASA/Chris Gunn)

WASHINGTON (NASA PR) — NASA will host a media teleconference at 4:30 p.m. EDT Thursday, July 16, to provide an update on the status of the agency’s James Webb Space Telescope, the world’s next premier infrared space observatory and the largest, most complex space telescope for astronomy ever built. 

The media teleconference audio will stream live at:

https://www.nasa.gov/live

Participants in the teleconference include: 

  • Stephen Jurczyk, NASA associate administrator 
  • Thomas Zurbuchen, NASA Science Mission Directorate associate administrator 
  • Gregory Robinson, NASA Webb program director 
  • Eric Smith, NASA Webb program scientist 

Once deployed, Webb will help solve mysteries in our solar system and look beyond to distant worlds around other stars, as well as probe the mysterious structures and origins of our universe. Webb is an international program led by NASA with its partners ESA (European Space Agency) and the Canadian Space Agency. 

For more information on Webb, go to: 

https://www.nasa.gov/webb

NASA and Boeing Complete Orbital Flight Test Reviews

Starliner OFT-1 capsule after landing at White Sands Missile Range. (Credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls)

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. (NASA PR) — NASA and Boeing have completed major reviews of the company’s uncrewed Orbital Flight Test in December 2019 and are continuing with preparations to refly the test, designated Orbital Flight Test-2 (OFT-2), to the International Space Station as part of NASA’s Commercial Crew Program.

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