Edward Gibson is a former astronaut for NASA as well as a pilot, engineer, and physicist. He was born Edward George Gibson on November 8, 1936 in Buffalo, New York. After his graduation from Kenmore Senior High School, he went on to attend the University of Rochester in New York State where he earned his Bachelor of Science degree in engineering in June 1959. He subsequently attended the California Institute of Technology where he earned his Master of Science degree in engineering in June 1960 and his Doctorate in June 1964. While at Caltech, Gibson conducted research in jet propulsion and classical physics. After receiving his Doctorate, he accepted a position at the Applied Research Laboratories of the Philco Corporation at Newport Beach, California as a senior research scientist.
In June 1965, Gibson was selected by NASA as a scientist-astronaut with Astronaut Group 4, and subsequently went through a year-long flight training course at Williams Air Force Base in Arizona, where he earned his Air Force wings. He worked as a CAPCOM for the Apollo 12 lunar landing and as a member of the astronaut support crew. He also participated in the design and testing of many elements of the Skylab space station. His first flight to space was as the science-pilot of Skylab 4, which launched on November 16, 1973. After completing over 100 experiments, observations, and objectives, the mission became the longest manned flight of space exploration at that time when they landed back on Earth on February 8, 1974. In December of that same year, Gibson resigned from NASA to pursue work as a senior staff scientist with the Aerospace Corporation of Los Angeles, California. From March 1976-March 1977, he worked as a consultant on Spacelab design under the sponsorship of a U.S. Senior Scientist Award form the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. He then went back to work as Chief of the Scientist-Astronaut Candidates in the Astronaut Office.
In October 1990, Gibson started his own consulting firm that he called Gibson International Corp. The firm offered program management, market development and space infrastructure design and operations consulting services. He was also President of the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry. Currently he is Senior Vice President at the Science Applications International Corporation and Manager of its EROS Data Center Operation in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. He is married to Julie Anne Volk and has four children. Gibson has received numerous awards during his career, such as the Johnson Space Center Certificate of Commendation, the NASA Distinguished Service Medal, the NASA Space Flight Medal, the City of New York Gold Medal, the Robert J. Collier Trophy for 1973, the Dr. Robert H. Goddard Memorial Trophy for 1975, the American Astronautical Society’s 1975 Flight Achievement Award, and a Johnson Space Center Special Achievement Award. He has also been presented with honorary doctorates of science from the University of Rochester in 1974 and Wagner College in 1974. Gibson was inducted into the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame in 1997.
Image Caption: Edward Gibson. Credit: NASA/Wikipedia