UT alumnus and NASA astronaut Barry “Butch” Wilmore will command the next crew to launch to the International Space Station.
Wilmore graduated with a master’s degree in aviation systems in 1994 from the UT Space Institute. He and cosmonauts Elena Serova and Alexander Samokutyaev of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) will launch to the space station September 25 from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.
Wilmore, Serova, and Samokutyaev will serve as flight engineers for ISS Expedition 41 until November, at which time Wilmore will assume command of Expedition 42. The trio is scheduled to return to Earth in March 2015.
A captain in the US Navy, Wilmore grew up in Mount Juliet, Tennessee. During his tenure as a fleet naval officer and pilot, Wilmore completed four operational deployments, flying the A-7E and FA‑18 aircraft. He has accumulated almost 7,000 flight hours and more than 600 carrier landings.
Wilmore joined NASA in 2000 and flew aboard the space shuttle Atlantis for STS-129 in November 2009. The mission delivered two ExPRESS logistics carriers and about 30,000 pounds of replacement parts to the space station. To date, Wilmore has ten days, nineteen hours, and sixteen minutes of space flight to his credit.