Status: Active 2004-on. Born: 1970-01-04. Spaceflights: 2 . Total time in space: 181.96 days. Birth Place: Salem, Massachusetts.
Grew up in York, Maine. Educated Annapolis; MIT. US Navy officer.
Official NASA Biography as of June 2016:Christopher J. Cassidy (Captain, U.S. Navy)
PERSONAL DATA: Born January 4, 1970 in Salem, Massachusetts. Considers York, Maine, to be his hometown. He and his wife, Julie, are the proud parents of three children.
EDUCATION: Graduated from York High School, York, Maine; completed Naval Academy Prep School, Newport, Rhode Island, 1989; received a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics, U.S. Naval Academy, 1993; received a Master of Science in Ocean Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2000.
ORGANIZATIONS: U.S. Naval Academy Alumni Association; Massachusetts Institute of Technology Alumni Association; Fraternal Order of Underwater Demoliton Team (UDT)/Sea, Air, Land Team (SEAL) Association.
SPECIAL HONORS: Honor graduate of Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL (BUD/S) Class 192; awarded the Bronze Star with combat 'V' and Presidential Unit Citation for leading a nine-day operation at the Zharwar Kili cave complex - a national priority objective directly on the Afghanistan/Pakistan border; Quest speaker at the U.S. Naval Academy Combat Leadership Seminar, 2003, 2004; awarded a second Bronze Star for combat leadership service in Afghanistan, 2004; NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal.
EXPERIENCE: Ten years as a member of the U.S. Navy SEALs Team. He made four six-month deployments: two to Afghanistan, and two to the Mediterranean. Cassidy served as executive officer and operations officer of Special Boat Team Twenty in Norfolk, Virginia, and SEAL platoon commander at SEAL Team THREE in Coronado, California. He deployed to the Afghanistan region two weeks after September 11, 2001, served as ground assault force commander for international and U.S. only combat missions in Afghanistan, and led two months of noncompliant ship-boardings in the Northern Arabian Gulf. He was SEALs delivery vehicle platoon commander at SEAL Delivery Vehicle Team TWO in Norfolk, VA. He accumulated more than 200 hours underwater as pilot/navigator/mission commander of a two-man flooded submersible SEAL Delivery Vehicle (SDV), which is launched and recovered from a host-ship submarine. He also served as dry deck shelter platoon commander at SEAL Delivery Team TWO in Norfolk, VA. Cassidy volunteered for and completed a week-long, 180-mile charity kayak paddle from Norfolk, VA to Washington, D.C. to raise money and awareness for the Special Operations Warrior Foundation.
NASA EXPERIENCE: Cassidy as an astronaut was selected by NASA in May 2004. In February 2006, he completed Astronaut Candidate Training that included scientific and technical briefings, intensive instruction in shuttle and International Space Station systems, physiological training, T-38 flight training, and water and wilderness survival training. Completion of this initial training qualified him for various technical assignments within the Astronaut Office and future flight assignment as a mission specialist. From 2006 through 2008, he served as Capsule Commander (CAPCOM) in the Mission Control Center. During his NASA career, Cassidy completed six spacewalks, totaling 31 hours, 14 minutes and accumulated 182 days in space. He is currently in charge of the EVA branch within the Astronaut Office.
SPACE FLIGHT EXPERIENCE: STS-127, International Space Station Assembly Mission 2J/A, Endeavour (July 15, 2009 through July 31, 2009) delivered the Japanese-built Exposed Facility (JEM-EF) and the Experiment Logistics Module Exposed Section (ELM-ES) to the station. The crew completed the construction of the KIBO Japanese Experiment Module, installed scientific experiments on its Exposed Facility and delivered critical spare parts and replacement batteries to the orbital complex, in addition to transferring 24,638 pounds of hardware and 1,225 pounds of water to the station.
While the shuttle was docked to the station, the mission featured a record 13 astronauts working aboard the station representing all five space station partners: NASA, the Russian Space Agency, the Canadian Space Agency, the European Space Agency and the Japanese Space Agency. Cassidy performed three spacewalks totaling 18 hours and 5 minutes. The mission was accomplished in 248 Earth orbits, traveling 6,547,853 million miles in 15 days, 16 hours, 44 minutes and 58 seconds.
Expedition 35/36 (March 28, 2013 through September 11, 2013). Cassidy and Russian cosmonauts Pavel Vinogradov and Alexander Misurkin launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan to the International Space Station. The three crew members were the first to complete an expedited trip to the station - instead of taking the standard two days to rendezvous and dock, they arrived at the orbiting complex in less than six hours. Cassidy, Vinogradov and Misurkin were welcomed to the space station by Chris Hadfield of the Canadian Space Agency, Tom Marshburn of NASA and Roman Romanenko of Roscosmos. The crew members saw the arrival of the European ATV-4cargo spacecraft, the Japanese HTV-4 cargo spacecraft and two Russian Progress resupply spacecraft. The trio also worked on hundreds of research experiments and science investigations that will have benefits for future human spaceflight and life on Earth. Cassidy conducted three spacewalks during his 166 days aboard the station. During the expedition, the crew completed 2,656 Earth orbits and traveled more than 70 million miles.
Official NASA Biography - May 2004
Chris Cassidy, Mission Specialist
BORN: Salem, Massachusetts
EDUCATION: BS, Mathematics, U.S. Naval Academy, 1993; MS, Ocean Engineering, MIT, 2000
CURRENT JOB: Commander, Naval Special Warfare Task Unit, Afghanistan, Senior SEAL in Afghanistan
QUICK FACT: Has done two tours of duty in Afghanistan
QUOTE: "I hope to be the next guy on the moon."
Navy SEAL Chris Cassidy had just returned from a second tour in Afghanistan when he got word that his next mission could take him much, much farther away.
"I hope to be the next guy on the moon," Cassidy says.
Cassidy has been selected to begin astronaut training this summer as a mission specialist at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston. It is an opportunity he has worked toward for years, after hearing about the achievements of a fellow SEAL.
"I heard about Bill Shepherd, and I found his story motivating," Cassidy said of the first International Space Station commander. "I contacted him and asked him what sort of things I should do to prepare myself to be an astronaut."
Among the things he says Shepherd recommended was that he go back to school. Already armed with a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics from the U.S. Naval Academy, Cassidy applied to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, or MIT. He eventually earned a Master's degree there in Ocean Engineering.
Cassidy grew up in York, Maine, where he played basketball at York High School. He also attended the Naval Academy Preparatory School in Newport, R.I. His Navy career has taken him across the country and around the world, from Norfolk, Va. on the east coast to San Diego, Calif. on the west. After the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington, the Navy sent him to Afghanistan.
His platoon was deployed to fight in the war against terrorism shortly after September 11. He says that was a "nerve-wracking" time for his family. During his second Afghan tour, he took on a greater leadership role and was involved heavily in planning. Cassidy, now a lieutenant commander in the Navy, says he is "just happy to come home in one piece."
Cassidy, 34, is married and has three children, all of whom, he says, are excited to move to Houston. Their dad is enthusiastic, too. Cassidy is "more excited than ever" by the new Vision for Space Exploration and is thrilled at the timing of his selection. By the time NASA is ready to return humans to the moon, he says, he'll be ready.
"I was attracted to NASA for the mystique of traveling into space," he says. "I want to contribute to the agency's mission in any way I can."
The group was selected to provide pilot and mission specialists for post-ISS spaceflights to the moon and beyond. Qualifications: Pilots: Bachelor's degree in engineering, biological science, physical science or mathematics. Advanced degree desirable. At least 1,000 flight-hours of pilot-in-command time. Flight test experience desirable. Excellent health. Vision minimum 20/50 uncorrected, correctable to 20/20 vision; maximum sitting blood pressure 140/90. Height between 163 and 193 cm.
Mission Specialists: Bachelor's degree in engineering, biological science, physical science or mathematics and minimum three years of related experience or an advanced degree. Vision minimum 20/150 uncorrected, correctable to 20/20. Maximum sitting blood pressure of 140/90. Height between 150 and 193 cm.. Due to a surplus of astronauts and a dearth of missions, NASA cancelled the planned 2002 astronaut selection. The next call for applications was made in May 2003, with a due date of 1 July. 'Educator astronauts' were especially requested, and 1100 applications were received in this category. The final selection was two pilots and nine mission specialists; nine men and two women. Given the drastic reduction if shuttle flights and ISS crew size planned for the post-Columbia disaster period, the chances for astronauts from this group flying in the next decade seemed slim indeed. Also training in this group were three NASDA astronauts from Japan.
Crew: Polansky, Hurley, Cassidy, Marshburn, Wolf, Payette. Deliver to the ISS and install the Kibo Japanese Experiment Module Exposed Facility (JEM EF); Kibo Japanese Experiment Logistics Module - Exposed Section (ELM-ES); and Spacelab Pallet - Deployable 2 (SLP-D2).
Docked with the Poisk module of the ISS at 02:28 GMT on 29 March. Soyuz TMA-08M undocked from the ISS and made its deorbit burn at 02:05 GMT. The BO and PAO modules were jettisoned at 02:32 GMT and the SA descent module containing Vinogradov, Misurkin and Cassidy touched down safely in Kazakhstan at 02:58 GMT after 166.3 days in space.