Stennis Space Center employee Mike Pannell, a resident of Bay St. Louis, and native of Titusville, Florida, was recognized April 3 by NASA’s Space Flight Awareness Program with an Honoree Award for outstanding support of human spaceflight.
Pannell is a senior industrial hygienist with the NASA Center Operations Directorate at Stennis. He was honored for ensuring the health and safety of Stennis personnel and facilities involved in the testing of engines to support NASA spaceflight programs.
Astronaut Scott Tingle, along with Bill Hill, NASA deputy associate administrator for exploration systems development; and Mary Byrd, director of the Stennis Center Operations Directorate, presented the Honoree Awards during a ceremony in New Orleans.
In recognition of his flight program contributions, Pannell toured NASA’s Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans and Stennis Space Center near Bay St. Louis. He also had the opportunity to view a hot fire test of RS-25 flight engine No. 2062 on the A-1 Test Stand at Stennis. NASA is testing RS-25 engines at Stennis to help power its new Space Launch System rocket, being built to carry humans deeper into space than ever, to such destinations as the Moon and, ultimately, Mars.
Tingle was a member of the 20th astronaut class in 2009. He served as flight engineer on the Expedition 54/55 crew on the International Space Station from Dec. 17, 2017 through June 3, 2018. During the mission, hundreds of experiments were conducted, including a study of the effect of microgravity on the bone marrow and research into plant growth in space. Tingle performed two spacewalks during the 168-day mission.
NASA’s Space Flight Awareness Program recognizes outstanding job performances and contributions by civil service and contract employees throughout the year and focuses on excellence in quality and safety in support of human spaceflight. The Honoree Award is one of the highest honors presented to employees for their dedication to quality work and flight safety. Recipients must have contributed beyond their normal work requirements toward achieving a particular human spaceflight program goal; contributed to a major cost savings; been instrumental in developing material that increases reliability, efficiency or performance; assisted in operational improvements; or been a key player in developing a beneficial process improvement.
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