Event Details
Payload Blog

Meet Astronaut Don Thomas

Dec 13, 2021 - Dec 14, 2021 Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex


Astronauts are back! Join Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex in welcoming back NASA’s veteran astronauts as part of our daily schedule and add-on enhancements.  

NASA selects astronauts from a diverse pool of applicants with a wide variety of backgrounds, from scientists to pilots. From the thousands of applications received, only a few are chosen to be a member of the elite NASA Astronaut Corps. Each day at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, visitors get the rare opportunity to meet a veteran NASA astronaut. 

Meet the Astronaut of the Day at any of the following opportunities.  See the Daily Schedule for the times for each when you arrive. 

  • The daily Astronaut Encounter briefings allow time for a presentation from the astronaut and a question-and-answer session, so be prepared to ask him or her what you have always wanted to know.
  • Visitors can also get an astronaut’s autograph at The Space Shop and Shuttle Express at various times during the day.
  • During the all-new Chat With An Astronaut, enjoy a sampling of food and beverages while having a group conversation with the Astronaut of the Day about what it is really like to live and work in space.  This new add-on enhancement requires daily admission.

ABout Don Thomas:

  • Born in Cleveland, Ohio 
  • Holds a Bachelor Degree in Physics and Master and Doctorate Degrees in Materials Science 
  • As an employee with Lockheed Engineering and Sciences, he reviewed materials used in space shuttle payloads. 
  • Worked at JSC as a Materials Engineer, studying composite materials to be used for the Space Station. 
  • Selected by NASA in 1990 
  • Flew as a Mission Specialist on four flights: 
    • STS-65 in 1994 -  International Microgravity Laboratory 
    • STS-70 in 1995 - TDRS deploy 
    • STS-83 and STS-94 in 1997 - Microgravity Science Laboratory 
  • Currently a professor of Physics at Towson University, where he directs an academy that encourages students to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics — the STEM skills. 
Don Thomas

Meet Astronaut Don Thomas

MissionsSTS-65 Columbia

STS-70 Discovery

STS-83 Columbia

STS-94 Columbia