Interview with SpaceX Crew-3 pilot Tom Marshburn
The Crew-3 mission launched November 2021
Dr. Thomas Marshburn is the pilot of the Crew Dragon spacecraft and second in command for the SpaceX Crew-3 mission. He is responsible for spacecraft systems and performance. Once aboard the International Space Station (ISS), he will serve as an Expedition 66 flight engineer.
Tom is a Statesville, North Carolina, native who became an astronaut in 2004. Prior to serving in the astronaut corps, the medical doctor served as flight surgeon at Johnson and later became medical operations lead for the ISS.
The Crew-3 mission will be his third visit to the space station and his second long-duration mission. Tom previously served as a crew member of STS-127 in 2009 and Expedition 34/35, which concluded in 2013.
Having flown the space shuttle, Soyuz and soon the Crew Dragon, in this interview Tom discusses some of the differences between these vehicles and even the pre-launch traditions for astronauts. He also talks about some of experiments planned for the Crew-3 mission, including a muscle sensor that will study how muscles atrophy in space, as well as the Cold Atom experiment, which aims to create the lowest temperature ever for studying gravitational fields. Tom also describes his emergency spacewalk experience with Chris Cassidy, when both astronauts had to fix an ammonia coolant leak in the ISS.
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