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Meet: Tracy Gill

NASA Kennedy Space Center
Experiment Processing Lead Engineer

photo of tracy gill at work station
Working at the at the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC)
Payload Operations Control Center (POCC)
during the flight of the STS-94 mission

My Journals

Who I Am

Hello, my name is Tracy Gill. I work for NASA at the Kennedy Space Center. Specifically, I work in the Experiment Integration area of Space Shuttle Payloads.

What I Do

In Experiment Integration, we ready for launch experiment hardware from other NASA space centers, from universities around the country, and from foreign sponsors such as the European Space Agency (ESA), the Japanese Space Agency (NASDA), the Italian Space Agency (ASI), and the German Space Agency (DARA) to name a few. We install the experiment hardware we receive in or on a standard carrier so that it can fly somewhere in the space shuttle orbiter.

The function of the Experiment Integration team is to install the hardware and then test all the power, video, cooling, and data interfaces, so that we know the experiment will work successfully once the mission begins.

Our Work Begins Before Launch

Our work begins anywhere from a year before launch to only a few days depending on the size and the complexity of the payload. I have been working mainly on what we call Spacelab module missions in my time at NASA. The Microgravity Science Laboratory is the second to last of the currently scheduled Spacelab module missions. Once the International Space Station (ISS) is operational, the type of work done in Spacelab can be done for a longer period and more efficiently on the ISS.

My Career Journey

I have been working here since January of 1990 after I graduated from the University of Florida (UF) with a bachelor's of science degree in electrical engineering. Go Gators! I knew when I was in school at UF that I wanted to work for NASA because I've always been a big fan of the space program. And it all worked out for me.

Likes About Career

I have been very fortunate to be able to work in Experiment Integration where I have been able to gain a lot of valuable experience doing "hands-on" work on flight hardware and working with people from all over the United States and the world.

Learn more from my Chats January 14, l998


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