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TROY Magazine
TROY alumnus Kevin Ford will be residing among the stars for the
next several months.
No, the 1989 master’s graduate with a degree in international
relations is not relocating to Hollywood. Instead, he will be aboard
the International Space Station for the next five months, serving
first as flight engineer for Expedition 33 and then as commander of
Expedition 34.
Ford launched aboard a Soyuz spacecraft from Kazakhstan
in October and is scheduled to return in March. The crew for
Expedition 33 and 34 will continue to expand the scope of research
aboard the International Space Station, with new research facilities
being delivered and a new micro-satellite deployment system being
tested. During the missions, more than 240 experiments will be
conducted by crew members in the areas of human research,
biological and physical sciences, technology development, Earth
observation and education.
“The goal of the flight is to fly a safe and productive flight and
carry out the plan that the increment managers put out there for
us,” Ford said. “The space station is really a huge, very unique
cooperative effort between all these countries. I’m really proud to be
a part of that.”
This is not Ford’s first trip to the International Space Station. He
served as pilot on a construction/delivery mission aboard the Space
Shuttle Discovery in 2009. Ford spent slightly less than 14 days in
space during the mission, orbiting the earth 219 times.
“I think that I’ll look at the space station in a whole new way this
time,” the Indiana native said prior to the expedition. “As a space
shuttle crew member, you have a lot of emphasis on the shuttle
aspects of the flight, the very high tempo of the shuttle visit, and
you don’t really get to appreciate all that the space station has to
offer. I’m looking forward to the extended stay.”
Ellis is a coordinator of university relations and editor of the Troy University
Alumnus Among
By Andy Ellis