Susan J. Helms

Susan J. Helms

Infobox Astronaut
name =Susan Jane Helms

caption =Brig. Gen. Susan J. Helms, USAF
type =NASA Astronaut
status =Active Duty
45th Space Wing Commander
nationality =American
date_birth =February 26, 1958
place_birth =Charlotte, North Carolina
occupation =Engineer
rank =Brigadier General, USAF
selection =1990 NASA Group
time =210d 23h 06m
mission =STS-54, STS-64, STS-78, STS-101, STS-102, Expedition 2, STS-105
insignia =|

Susan Jane Helms (born 1958) is a United States Air Force Brigadier General and a former NASA astronaut. She is currently the commanding officer of the 45th Space Wing, based at Patrick Air Force Base. Helms was a crew member on four Space Shuttle missions and was a resident of the International Space Station (ISS) for over five months in 2001. While participating in ISS Expedition 2, she and Jim Voss conducted an 8 hour and 56 minute spacewalk, the longest to date. [cite web | url = | title = STS-102 Mission Control Center Status Report # 7 | publisher = NASA]


Born February 26, 1958, in Charlotte, North Carolina, but considers Portland, Oregon, to be her hometown. She enjoys piano and other musical activities, jogging, traveling, reading, computers, and cooking. Her parents, Lt. Col. (Ret., USAF) Pat and Dori Helms, reside in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Helms has three sisters.


* 1976: Graduated from Parkrose Senior High School, Portland, Oregon
* 1980: Received a bachelor of science degree in aeronautical engineering from the United States Air Force Academy
* 1985; Received a master of science degree in aeronautics/astronautics from Stanford University


* Women Military Aviators
* U.S. Air Force Academy Association of Graduates
* Stanford Alumni Association
* Association of Space Explorers
* Sea/Space Symposium
* Chi Omega Sorority

Military career

Helms graduated from the U.S. Air Force Academy in 1980. She received her commission and was assigned to Eglin Air Force Base, Florida, as an F-16 weapons separation engineer with the Air Force Armament Laboratory. In 1982, she became the lead engineer for F-15 weapons separation. In 1984, she was selected to attend graduate school. She received her degree from Stanford University in 1985 and was assigned as an assistant professor of aeronautics at the U.S. Air Force Academy. In 1987, she attended the Air Force Test Pilot School at Edwards Air Force Base, California. After completing one year of training as a flight test engineer, Helms was assigned as a USAF Exchange Officer to the Aerospace Engineering Test Establishment, at Canadian Forces Base Cold Lake in Alberta, Canada, where she worked as a flight test engineer and project officer on the CF-18 aircraft. She was managing the development of a CF-18 Flight Control System Simulation for the Canadian Forces when selected for the astronaut program.

After a 12-year NASA career that included 211 days in space, Helms returned to the U.S. Air Force in July 2002 to take a position at HQ USAF Space Command. After a stint as the Division Chief of the Space Control Division of the Requirements Directorate of Air Force Space Command in Colorado Springs, Colorado, she served as Vice Commander of the 45th Space Wing at Patrick Air Force Base near Cape Canaveral, Florida. She then served as Deputy Director of Operations for Air Education and Training Command at Randolph Air Force Base near San Antonio, Texas. She was promoted to Brigadier General in June 2006 and assumed the duties of Commander of the 45th Space Wing on the same day of her promotion. [ USAF Biography of Helms] ]

As a flight test engineer, Helms has flown in 30 different types of U.S. and Canadian military aircraft.

Gen. Helms has been selected for reassignment as Director, Plans and Policy, Headquarters U.S. Strategic Command, Offutt Air Force Base, Neb.

paceflight experience

Selected by NASA in January 1990, Helms became an astronaut in July 1991. She flew on STS-54 (1993), STS-64 (1994), STS-78 (1996), STS-101 (2000) and served aboard the International Space Station as a member of the "ISS Expedition 2" crew (2001). A veteran of five space flights, Helms logged 5,064 hours in space, including an EVA of 8 hours and 56 minutes (world record). [ [ Official NASA biography of Susan Helms] ] [ [ Spacefacts biography of Susan J. Helms] ] [ [ DoD News General Officer Assignments] ]

STS-54 "Endeavour", January 13-19, 1993. The primary objective of this mission was the deployment of a $200-million NASA Tracking and Data Relay Satellite (TDRS-F). A Diffuse X-Ray Spectrometer (DXS) carried in the payload bay, collected over 80,000 seconds of quality X-ray data that will enable investigators to answer questions about the origin of the Milky Way galaxy. The crew demonstrated the physics principles of everyday toys to an interactive audience of elementary school students across the United States. A highly successful extra-vehicular activity (EVA) resulted in many lessons learned that will benefit International Space Station assembly. Mission duration was 5 days, 23 hours, 38 minutes, 17 seconds.

STS-64 "Discovery", September 9-20, 1994. On this flight, Helms served as the flight engineer for orbiter operations and the primary RMS operator aboard Space Shuttle. The major objective of this flight was to validate the design and operating characteristics of Lidar in Space Technology Experiment (LITE) by gathering data about the Earth's troposphere and stratosphere. Additional objectives included the deploy and retrieval of SPARTAN-201, a free-flying satellite that investigated the physics of the solar corona, and the testing of a new EVA maneuvering device. The Shuttle Plume Impingement Flight Experiment (SPIFEX) was used to collect extensive data on the effects of jet thruster impingement, in preparation for proximity tasks such as space station docking. Mission duration was 10 days, 22 hours, 51 minutes.

STS-78 "Columbia", June 20 to July 7, 1996, Helms was the payload commander and flight engineer aboard "Columbia", on the longest Space Shuttle mission to date (later that year the STS-80 mission broke its record by nineteen hours.) The mission included studies sponsored by ten nations and five space agencies, and was the first mission to combine both a full microgravity studies agenda and a comprehensive life science investigation. The Life and Microgravity Spacelab mission served as a model for future studies on board the International Space Station. Mission duration was 16 days, 21 hours, 48 minutes.

STS-101 "Atlantis", May 19-29, 2000, was a mission dedicated to the delivery and repair of critical hardware for the International Space Station. Helms prime responsibilities during this mission were to perform critical repairs to extend the life of the Functional Cargo Block (FGB). In addition, she had prime responsibility of the onboard computer network and served as the mission specialist for rendezvous with the ISS. Mission duration was 9 days, 20 hours and 9 minutes.

Helms lived and worked on board the International Space Station as a member of the second crew to inhabit the International Space Station Alpha. The "Expedition 2" crew (two American astronauts and one Russian cosmonaut) launched on March 8, 2001 on board STS-102 "Discovery" and successfully docked with the station on March 9, 2001. The "Expedition-2" crew installed and conducted tests on the Canadian made Space Station Robotic arm (SSRMS), conducted internal and external maintenance tasks (Russian and American), in addition to medical and science experiments. During her stay on board the Space Station, Helms installed the Airlock (brought up on the STS-104 mission) using the SSRM. She and her crewmates also performed a 'fly around' of the Russian "Soyuz" spacecraft and welcomed the visiting Soyuz crew that included the first space tourist, Dennis Tito. On March 11 she performed a world record 8 hour and 56 minute space walk to install hardware to the external body of the laboratory module. Helms spent a total of 163 days aboard the Space Station. She returned to earth with the STS-105 crew aboard "Discovery" on August 22, 2001.


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Susan Jane Helms — Susan Helms Land (Organisation): USA (NASA) Datum der Auswahl: 17. Januar 1990 (13. NASA Gruppe) Anzahl der Raumflüge: 5 Start erster Raumflug …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Susan J. Helms — Susan Helms Nationalité américaine Naissance 26 février 1958 Charlotte, Caroline du Nord Temps total passé dans l’es …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Susan J. Helms — Susan Helms Land (Behörde): USA (NASA) Datum der Auswahl: 17. Januar 1990 (13. NASA Gruppe) Anzahl der Raumflüge: 5 Start erster Raumflug: 13. Januar …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Susan Helms — Susan Jane Helms Nacimiento 26 de febrero de 1958, Charlotte, Carolina del Norte Estudios Ingeniera aeronáutica …   Wikipedia Español

  • Susan Helms — Susan J. Helms Susan Helms Astronaute Nationalité américaine Naissance 26 février 1958 (Charlotte, Caroline du Nord) Temps total passé dans l espace …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Helms — ist ein deutsch skandinavischer Familienname. Der Name Helms ist in Deutschland vor allem im Oldenburgischen und Braunschweigischen verbreitet. Ableitungen beziehungsweise andere Schreibweisen des Namens sind: Helmts, Helmer, Helmerich(s), Helmes …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Susan (desambiguación) — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Susan puede referirse a: Personalidades Susan Sarandon, actriz estadounidense ganadora del premio Oscar. Susan Sontag, novelista y ensayista norteamericana. Susan Elizabeth Phillips, escritora norteamericana… …   Wikipedia Español

  • Susan — puede referirse a: Personalidades Susan Sarandon, actriz estadounidense ganadora del premio Oscar. Susan Sontag, novelista y ensayista norteamericana. Susan Elizabeth Phillips, escritora norteamericana especializada en novela romántica. Susan… …   Wikipedia Español

  • Susan Helms — Land (Behörde): USA (NASA) Datum der Auswahl: 17. Januar 1990 (13. NASA Gruppe) Anzahl der Raumflüge: 5 Start erster Raumflug: 13. Januar …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Helms — is a German/Scandinavian family name. The name is most likely connected to the German town of Helmsdorf. It may refer to:* Bobby Helms (1933 1997), American singer * Chet Helms (1942 2005), American rock promoter * Don Helms (1927 2008), American …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.