Status: Inactive; Active 1980-1991. Born: 1946-09-06. Spaceflights: 2 . Total time in space: 15.97 days. Birth Place: Orange, California.
Grew up in Twenty Nine Palms, California, son of a Marine officer. Educated Annapolis; Patuxent. Marine Corps test pilot.
Official NASA Biography as of June 2016:BRYAN D. OCONNOR (COLONEL, USMC, RET.)
NASA ASTRONAUT (FORMER)
PERSONAL DATA: Born September 6, 1946, in Orange, California, but considers Twentynine Palms, California, to be his hometown. Bryan and his wife, Susan, have two married sons, Thomas and Kevin, and three granddaughters, Ella, Riley and Colby. The O'Connor family enjoys hiking, photography, artisan bread baking, music and gardening.
EDUCATION: Graduated from Twentynine Palms High School, Twentynine Palms, California, in 1964; received a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering (minor in Aeronautical Engineering) from the United States Naval Academy in 1968 and a Master of Science degree in Aeronautical Systems from the University of West Florida in 1970. He graduated from the Naval Safety School at the Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, California, in 1972 and from the Naval Test Pilot School, Naval Air Test Center, Patuxent River, Maryland, in 1976.
SPECIAL HONORS: Naval Safety School Top Graduate; Naval Test Pilot School Distinguished Graduate Award; Defense Superior Service Medal; Distinguished Flying Cross; NASA Distinguished Service Medal; NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal; NASA Exceptional Service Medal; NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal.
EXPERIENCE: O'Connor began active duty with the United States Marine Corps in June 1968 following graduation from the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis. He received his Naval Aviator's wings in June 1970, and served as an attack pilot, flying the A-4 Skyhawk and the AV-8A Harrier on land and sea assignments in the United States, Europe and the Western Pacific. O'Connor served as a test pilot with the Naval Air Test Center from 1976 to 1979. He participated in flying qualities, performance, carrier suitability, weapons and systems testing evaluations of various conventional and VSTOL aircraft, including the A-4, OV-10, AV-8 and X-22 VSTOL research aircraft. When informed of his selection to NASA's Astronaut Program in 1980, he was serving as the Deputy Program Manager (Acquisition) for the AV-8 program at the Naval Air Systems Command in Washington, D.C.
NASA EXPERIENCE: O'Connor served in a variety of research development test and evaluation roles in three tours at NASA, covering 24 years between 1980 and his retirement as NASA's Chief of Safety and Mission Assurance in August 2011.
As of this writing, O'Connor has flown more than 5,000 hours in over 40 types of aircraft and is a veteran of two space shuttle flights.
SPACEFLIGHT EXPERIENCE: STS-61B Atlantis (November 26 to December 3, 1985). O'Connor served as pilot on this satellite deploy and flight control test and evaluation flight. After completing 108 orbits of the Earth, Atlantis returned to land at Edwards Air Force Base.
STS-40 Columbia (June 5 to June 14, 1991). O'Connor served as commander of the first space shuttle mission dedicated fully to life science studies. After 145 orbits of the Earth, Columbia returned to land at Edwards Air Force Base.
NAME: Bryan D. O'Connor (Colonel, USMC)
BIRTHPLACE AND DATE: Born September 6, 1946, in Orange, California, but considers Twentynine Palms, California, to be his hometown. His parents, Colonel (USMC, Retired) and Mrs. Thomas J. O'Connor, reside in Twentynine Palms, California.
PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Brown hair; hazel eyes; 6 feet; 172 pounds.
EDUCATION: Graduated from Twentynine Palms High School, Twentynine Palms, California, in 1964; received a bachelor of science degree in Engineering (minor in Aeronautical Engineering) from the United States Naval Academy in 1968 and a master of science in Aeronautical Systems from the University of West Florida in 1970.
MARITAL STATUS: Married to the former Susan A. Reid of Vienna, Virginia. Her mother, Mrs. Emily Reid, resides in Harrisonburg, Virginia.
CHILDREN: Thomas R., September 10, 1970; and Kevin D., May 14, 1973.
RECREATIONAL INTERESTS: He enjoys model ship/airplane building, scuba diving, rowing, racquetball, squash, swimming, and music.
SPECIAL HONORS: Marine Basic School Platoon Honor Man; Test Pilot School Distinguished Graduate Award; Defense Superior Service Medal. Recipient of NASA Space Flight Medal (1985), and two NASA Exceptional Service Medals (1988, 1989).
EXPERIENCE: O'Connor began active duty with the United States Marine Corps in June 1968 following graduation from the Naval Academy at Annapolis. He completed Marine Infantry Officer's Basic School at Quantico, Virginia, in December 1968, and then reported to Pensacola, Florida, for flight training, receiving his wings in June 1970. He served as a squadron pilot with VMA-214 at El Toro, California, where he flew the A-4E and A-4F Skyhawk light-attack aircraft. In July 1971, he returned to Kingsville, Texas as an advanced flight training instructor in the TA-4J trainer and was subsequently assigned to VMA-513, the first Harrier squadron home-based at Beaufort, South Carolina. As a squadron pilot, he deployed with VMA-513 to Iwakuni, Japan, and Kwangju, Korea, and completed a 6-month cruise aboard USS GUAM in the Mediterranean. O'Connor is a graduate of the U.S. Navy Test Pilot School and served as a test pilot with the Naval Air Test Center's Strike Test Directorate at Patuxent River, Maryland. During this 3-1/2 year assignment, he participated in evaluations of various conventional and VSTOL aircraft. From June 1977 to June 1979, he was the Naval Air Test Center project pilot for all AV-8 Harrier projects, including the first Navy preliminary evaluation of the YAV-8B advanced Harrier prototype. When informed of his selection by NASA, he was serving as the Harrier class desk officer at the Naval Air Systems Command.
He has logged more than 5,000 hours flying time -- including 4,300 hours in jet aircraft.
NASA EXPERIENCE: O'Connor was selected as an astronaut in May 1980. He was a T-38 chase pilot for STS-3, and was CAPCOM for STS-5 through STS-9.
O'Connor was assigned as pilot on STS 61-M. When that mission was canceled after the Challenger accident, he served as Assistant to the Shuttle Program Manager from March 1986 until February 1988, and as Chairman of NASA's Space Flight Safety Panel from September 1986 to February 1989. From August 1989 to April 1990 he was Deputy Director of Flight Crew Operations. He is a veteran of two space missions and has logged over 383 hours in space. In 1985 he served as pilot on the crew of STS 61-B, and in 1991 commanded a seven person crew on STS-40.
On his first mission O'Connor was pilot on the crew of STS 61-B. The Orbiter Atlantis was launched at night from Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on November 26, 1985. During the mission the crew deployed the MORELOS-B, AUSSAT II, and SATCOM K-2 communications satellites, conducted two six-hour space walks to demonstrate Space Station construction techniques with the EASE/ACCESS experiments, operated the Continuous Flow Electrophoresis (CFES) experiment for McDonnell Douglas and a Getaway Special (GAS) container for Telesat, Canada, conducted several Mexican Payload Specialist Experiments for the Mexican Government, and tested the Orbiter Experiments Digital Autopilot (OEX DAP). This was the heaviest payload weight carried to orbit by the Space Shuttle to date. After completing 108 orbits of the earth in 165 hours, STS 61-B Atlantis landed on Runway 22 at Edwards Air Force Base, California, on December 3, 1985.
More recently, O'Connor commanded the crew of STS-40 Spacelab Life Sciences (SLS-1), a dedicated space and life sciences mission, which launched from the Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on June 5, 1991. SLS-1 was a nine day mission during which crew members performed experiments which explored how humans, animals and cells respond to microgravity and readapt to earth's gravity on return. Other payloads included experiments designed to investigate materials science, cosmic radiation, and the accelerations on the vehicle resulting from various maneuvers on orbit. Following 146 orbits of the earth, Columbia and her crew landed at Edwards Air Force Base, California, on June 14, 1991, to perform the first high speed nosewheel steering test on a concrete runway. Completion of this flight logged him an additional 218 hours in space.
The group was selected to provide pilot, engineer, and scientist astronauts for space shuttle flights.. 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..
Manned seven crew. Deployed Morelos 2, Aussat 2, Satcom K2, OEX. Payloads: Deploy SATCOM (RCA-Satellite Communi-cations) Ku-2 with Payload Assist Module (PAM)-D II. Deploy Morelos (Mexico communications satellite)-B with PAM-D. Deploy AUSSAT (Australian communications satellite)-2 with PAM-D. EASE/ACCESS (Assembly of Structures— Assembly Concept for Construction of Erectable Space Structures) by extravehicular activity (EVA) astronauts, Continuous Flow Electrophore-sis System (CFES), Diffusive Mixing of Organic Solutions (DMOS), IMAX camera, one getaway special (GAS), Linhof camera and Hasseblad camera.
Carried Spacelab life sciences module. Payloads: Spacelab Life Sciences (SLS)-1 with long module, getaway special bridge assembly with 12 getaway specials, Physiological Monitoring System (PMS), Urine Monitoring System (UMS), Animal Enclosure Modules (AEM), Middeck Zero-gravity Dynamics Experiment (MODE), 7 Orbiter Experiments Program experiments.