dimanche 27 décembre 2009

Interview avec Thomas ''Tom'' Jones, astronaute de la NASA qui a effectué 4 missions à bord de la navette spatiale lors de STS-59, 68, 80 et 98

Thomas ''Tom'' Jones est un astronaute de la NASA sélectionné en 1990 dans le Groupe 13. Ancien pilote de l'US Air Force (pilote de B-52D Stratofortress), il passe un doctorat de Science Planétaire après avoir quitté l'USAF.
Il a effectué 4 missions spatiales en tant que Mission Specialist (STS-59, 68, 80 et 98) avant de quitter la NASA en 2001. Il a effectué 3 EVA lors de ses missions.
Actuellement consultant et écrivain.
Il a écrit en 2006 SKY WALKING, ses mémoires. C'est le livre dont il fait référence au cours de cette interview
Il a également son propre site internet
Interview réalisée en 2009
Q : How many years were you connected to the space program before your 1st flight ?
A : See details in my book ''Sky Walking'' at my website : http://www.astronauttomjones.com/. Researcher since 1985, joined NASA in 1990. First flight in 1994.
Q : How did you feel prior the flight ?
A : Eager to go, prepared, but nervous about whether I would be able to perform well in the space environment.
Q : What kinds of sensations did you experienced during take-off ?
A : See ''Sky Walking'' -- tremendous sense of acceleration, at being hurled into space by a marvelous machine.
Q : What does weightlessness feel like, and what did you think about the flight ?
A : During relaxed moments, it feel like floating on your back in a deep pool of warm water. Getting the job was my 1st priority. The view is what I enjoyed consistently.
Q : What were some of the problems have you encountered and how did you fixed them ?
A : See ''Sky Walking''. Few problems; most were ably solved by the ground team. Our biggest worry for the first few days was a water system that ingested cabin air and mix air bubbles with our water. Not very good for the digestion.
Q : What did you eat, and did it taste real ?
A : Favourite entree : ''Fiesta Chicken'' -- Thermo-stabilized chicken in a spicy salsa sauce. Very good
Q : What was Re-entry like ?
A : See ''Sky Walking'' for details, but I very much enjoyed the spectacular light show of the plasma wrapped around the shuttle, and the anticipation of our landing back home, with our families watching.
Q : Were you glad to be back on Earth, or did you feel you could have spent the rest of your life up there ?
A : I enjoyed returning to Earth. Space travel is a hard work ! I needed a vacation !

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