Patented Chemist turned astronaut, Janet Kavandi, will speak in Akron this Monday, January 11, 2016. The talk is being organized jointly by the Society of Plastics Engineers Akron Section and the Akron Council of Engineering and Scientific Societies.
Kavandi has had a fascinating and adventurous career. Having begun her studies in chemistry at Missouri Southern State College – Joplin, she earned her master’s degree from the University of Missouri – Rolla and then a doctorate in analytical chemistry from the University of Washington – Seattle.
Early in her career, Kavandi worked in battery technology and helped develop power systems for the defense industry and the Space Station while at Boeing in Seattle.
In 1995, Kavandi became a NASA astronaut and flew 3 missions and spent a total of 33 days aboard the International Space Station. The first mission involved work on payload integration. The second helped create 3D topographical maps of more than 47 million square miles of the Earth’s surface.
On her last mission she worked on the Shuttle and Space Station robotic manipulator systems.
Upon retirement as an astronaut, Janet Kavandi became a member of NASA’s administration, first at the Johnson Space Center in Houston before being promoted in February 2015 to Deputy Director of NASA Glenn Research Center, Brook Park, Ohio.
cleveland.com quoted Kavandi as saying “I always drive the speed limit, I wear my seat belt and I change the battery in the smoke detector. But I really enjoy the front seat of a roller coaster. Launching into space is the best roller coaster ride ever.”
Kanandi no doubt will have some unique insights and knowledge to share in Akron this coming Monday.
More information about the event can be found on the SPE Akron website