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For Immediate Release
CAIB PA 11-03

Date: March 15, 2003
Laura Brown, 281-283-7565 or 281-467-8657
Contact: Lt. Col Woody Woodyard, 281-283-7520 or 713-301-2244

Columbia Accident Investigation Board Holds Second Public Hearing

The Columbia Accident Investigation Board (CAIB) will hold public hearings on Monday, March 17 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. CST (2 p.m. to 5 p.m. EST) and Tuesday, March 18, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. CST (10 a.m. to 1 p.m. EST) at the Hilton Houston Clear Lake, 3000 NASA Road One, Houston, Texas.

The board's chairman, retired Navy Admiral Harold W. "Hal" Gehman Jr., and other board members will hear from individuals who have been asked to appear before the board. Experts in reentry debris, aerodynamics and thermodynamics will present brief statements and answer questions from the board during the hearing.

The speakers include: Dr. William Ailor, Director, Center for Orbital and Reentry Debris Studies, The Aerospace Corporation; Robert "Doug" White, Director, Operational Requirements, United Space Alliance; Paul Hill, Flight Director, Space Shuttle and International Space Station, NASA; Stephen Labbe, Chief, Applied Aeroscience and Computational Fluid Dynamics Branch, NASA; Christopher Madden, Deputy Chief, Thermal Design Branch, NASA; Jose Caram, Aerospace Engineer, Aeroscience and Flight Mechanics Division, NASA; Dr. John Bertin, Professor of Aeronautics, United States Air Force Academy.

CBS Television is the pool for the hearing. They will broadcast on Mon., 1130 - 1630 CST and Tues., 0830 - 1530 CST at AM 5 - Transponder 5i (digital), uplink freq. - 14170.375h, d/link freq. - 11870v, data - 5.500000, symbol - 3.978723, fec - 3/4. For questions on these coordinates please Contact Marty Gill, CBS South Editor at 212-975-4114 or Rachel Matza, KU Satellite Coordinator at 212-975-3844 (11a.m. to 7 p.m.)

The following are brief biographies of the hearing speakers:

MONDAY March 17, 2003 12 noon to 4 p.m.

Dr. William H. Ailor
Director, Center for Orbital and Reentry Debris Studies
The Aerospace Corporation

Dr. Ailor received a Ph.D. in aerospace engineering from Purdue University and joined the Aerospace Corporation in 1974. He spent 15 years in the flight mechanics and performance analysis areas, conducting analyses on spacecraft reentry and reentry breakup. He received a National Aeronautics and Space Administration Group Achievement Award in 1992 for advancing understanding of the reentry breakup characteristics of the Space Shuttle External Tank. He was appointed to his current position when the Center was established in June 1997 to study hazards associated with space debris and how objects reenter Earth's atmosphere. He served as chair of the ad-hoc Reentry Subpanel of the Interagency Nuclear Safety Review Panel, which provides independent assessments to the White House on the safety of space missions containing radioactive materials. Missions examined under his chairmanship include Galileo, Ulysses, Mars Pathfinder, Cassini and Mars Exploration Rover. The Aerospace Corporation, based in El Segundo, CA, is an independent, nonprofit company that provides objective technical analyses and assessments for national security space programs and selected civil and commercial space programs in the national interest.

R. Douglas White
Director for Operations Requirements, Orbiter Element Department
United Space Alliance
Mr. White began work on the space shuttle program in 1979 as an employee for Rockwell International in Downey, California. Mr. White has held increasingly responsible positions within the space shuttle program focusing on the areas of turnaround test requirements, engineering flight support, anomaly resolution, and Orbiter certification of flight readiness preparation. Mr. White joined United Space Alliance as a director in 1996. Mr. White holds a BS and MS in physics from UCLA.

Mr. Paul S. Hill
NASA Space Shuttle and International Space Station Flight Director
Mr. Hill received his Bachelor of Science and Masters of Science degrees in Aerospace Engineering from Texas A&M University in 1984 and 1985, respectively. For the past several years, he has been the NASA Space Shuttle and International Space Station Flight Director leading the flight control team for flight preparation and execution from Mission Control and the Flight Director for 21 Shuttle and ISS missions. Prior to his current position, Mr. Hill was the Space Station and Space Shuttle operations engineer, Joint Operations Panel Chairman. He also served as a Captain in the United States Air Force.

TUESDAY March 18, 2003 9 a.m. to 12 noon

Mr. Joe Caram is an aerospace engineer employed at the NASA Johnson Space Center since 1989 working in the Aeroscience and Flight Mechanics Division of the Engineering Directorate. He received his Bachelor of Science and Masters of Science degrees from Texas A&M University in 1986 and 1989, respectively. Until recently, he was serving as chief engineer for the feasibility studies of the Orbital Space Plane on Expendable Launch Vehicles and X-38 Project, Aeroscience and Flight Dynamics, Division Chief Engineer / Flight Dynamics Lead. Previous positions at NASA include: Aeroscience Branch engineer responsible for development and analysis of aerothermodynamic environments of various configurations including the Space Shuttle Orbiter. In that position, Mr. Caram was responsible for developing math models of the shock-shock interaction heating to the wing leading edge of the Orbiter and led a team investigating Orbiter early/asymmetric hypersonic boundary layer transition. Other activities during the 1991 to 1995 timeframe included being aerothermodynamics team lead in support of advanced projects such as Assured Crew Return Vehicle, First Lunar Outpost, Single Launch Core Station, and Liquid FlyBack Booster. Mr. Caram is an Associate Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics and author or co-author of 20 publications including AIAA conference papers and journal articles and Symposia.

Mr. Christopher B. Madden is a 1987 graduate of the University of Texas at Austin with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Aerospace, Aeronautics and Astronautics. He completed his Master of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Houston in 1993. He has been employed by NASA/Johnson Space Center since 1984 where he began as a cooperative student in the Thermal Analysis Section. Mr. Madden is currently serving as the Deputy Chief of the Thermal Design Branch. His previous duties included performing thermal analysis of reentry spacecraft thermal protection systems including the Space Shuttle and other advanced spacecraft; investigation of Space Shuttle thermal anomalies; design and planning of arc-jet tests in support of thermal protection system design and analysis; conducting simulations of orbital debris reentry, and lead engineer for the X-38 structures team including the composite aeroshell and thermal protection system.

Mr. Steven G. Labbe is a 1984 graduate of the University of Cincinnati with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Aerospace Engineering. He has been employed by NASA since 1981, beginning as a cooperative education student at the Lewis (now Glenn) Research Center. He transferred to the Johnson Space Center as a coop and accepted a full-time position in 1984. He currently serves as the Chief of the Applied Aeroscience and Computational Fluid Dynamics Branch. Previous positions at NASA include: Aeroscience Branch Engineer responsible for the development and analysis of Shuttle aerodynamic characteristics; Professional Development Program (PDP) participation via rotational assignment at NASA Ames Research Center in the Applied CFD Analysis Branch; Space Shuttle Ascent Aerodynamic Sub System Manager; Aeroscience Branch Aerodynamics Group Leader; X-38 Project, Aeroscience and Flight Mechanics, Division Chief Engineer/Flight Dynamics Team Lead; X-38 Aerodynamics Lead; and Deputy Chief, Applied Aeroscience & CFD Branch.

Dr. John J. Bertin
Professor of Aeronautics
United States Air Force Academy

Dr. Bertin holds a Ph.D. in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering from Rice University. Prior to his current position, he was in the Department of Aerospace Engineering and Engineering Mechanics at the University of Texas at Austin, served four years as an Aerospace Technologist at NASA's Manned Spacecraft Center (now known as the Johnson Space Center,) and in various roles at the Sandia National Laboratories. He is author of Aerodynamics for Engineers and co-author of Col. M.L. Smith Hypersonic Aerothermodynamics, published as part of the AIAA Education Series. He is a fellow of the AIAA, a Professional Engineer in the state of Texas, and has received numerous awards and honors, including the AIAA Thermophysics Award in 1997.

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