John M. Lounge

John Michael "Mike" Lounge (June 28, 1946 – March 1, 2011) was an American engineer, a United States Navy officer, a Vietnam War veteran, and a NASA astronaut. A veteran of three Space Shuttle flights, Lounge logged over 482 hours in space. He was a mission specialist on STS-51-I (1985) and STS-26 (1988) and was the flight engineer on STS-35 (1990).

John Michael "Mike" Lounge
John Lounge
BornJune 28, 1946
DiedMarch 1, 2011 (aged 64)
Space career
NASA astronaut
Time in space
20d 02h 23m
Selection1980 NASA Group
MissionsSTS-51-I, STS-26, STS-35
Mission insignia


John Michael Lounge was born June 28, 1946, in Denver, Colorado, but considered Burlington, Colorado to be his hometown. He graduated from Burlington High School in 1964, then received a Bachelor of Science degree from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1969 and a Master of Science degree in astrogeophysics from the University of Colorado at Boulder in 1970. Lounge was an associate fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics.

Military career

Lounge entered on active duty with the United States Navy following graduation from the U.S. Naval Academy and spent the next nine years in a variety of assignments. He completed Naval Flight Officer training at Pensacola, Florida, went on to advanced training as a radar intercept officer in the F-4J Phantom II, and subsequently reported to Fighter Squadron 142 (VF-142) based at Naval Air Station Miramar, California. While with VF-142, he completed a nine-month Southeast Asia cruise aboard USS Enterprise (participating in 99 combat missions in the Vietnam War) and a seven-month Mediterranean cruise aboard USS America. In 1974, he returned to the U.S. Naval Academy as an instructor in the Physics Department. Lounge transferred to the Navy Space Project Office in Washington, D.C., in 1976, for a two-year tour as a staff project office. He resigned his regular Navy commission in 1978 and joined the Naval Air Reserve. While in the Naval Air Reserve, he served in Reserve Fighter Squadron 201.[1] Later, he became a Lieutenant Colonel in the Texas Air National Guard, serving with the 147th Fighter Interceptor Group.[2]

NASA career

Lounge was employed at the Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center beginning in July 1978. During this time, he worked as lead engineer for Space Shuttle-launched satellites, and also served as a member of the Skylab Reentry Flight Control Team. He completed these assignments while with the Payload Operations Division.

Selected as an astronaut candidate by NASA in 1980, he completed a one-year training and evaluation period, and became an astronaut in August 1981. He served as a member of the launch support team at Kennedy Space Center for the STS-1, STS-2, and STS-3 missions. Following his first flight, he was assigned to the first mission to carry the Centaur (cryogenically fueled) upper stage (STS-61-F). After the mission was canceled, he participated in Space Station design development. From 1989 through 1991, Lounge served as Chief of the Space Station Support Office, representing astronaut interests in Space Station design and operation planning.


STS-51-I Space Shuttle Discovery, launched from Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on August 27, 1985. During that mission Lounge's duties included deployment of the Australian AUSSAT communications satellite and operation of the Remote Manipulator System (RMS). The crew deployed two other communications satellites, the Navy's SYNCOM IV-4, and American Satellite Company's ASC-1, and also performed a successful on-orbit rendezvous and repair of the ailing 15,400 lb (6,990 kg) SYNCOM IV-3 satellite. STS-51-I completed 112 orbits of the Earth before landing at Edwards Air Force Base, California, on September 3, 1985. Mission duration was 171 hours, 17 minutes, 42 seconds.

STS-26 Discovery, the first flight to be flown after the Challenger accident, launched from the Kennedy Space Center on September 29, 1988. During the four-day mission, the crewmen successfully deployed the Tracking and Data Relay Satellite (TDRS-C), which was subsequently carried to orbit by the Inertial Upper Stage (IUS) rocket. They also operated eleven mid-deck experiments. Discovery completed 64 orbits of the Earth before landing at Edwards Air Force Base, California, on October 3, 1988. Mission duration was 97 hours, 57 seconds.

STS-35 Columbia, launched from the Kennedy Space Center on December 2, 1990. Lounge served as flight engineer on this 9-day flight that was dedicated to astronomy. Observations of the Universe were collected by the ASTRO-1 ultraviolet telescope and by the Broad Band X-Ray Telescope. Columbia completed 142 orbits of the Earth before landing at Edwards Air Force Base, California, on December 10, 1990. Mission duration was 215 hours, 5 minutes, 8 seconds.

Post-NASA career

Lounge resigned from NASA in June 1991 to join SPACEHAB (now Astrotech Corporation). At the time, Lounge explained his resignation from the NASA Astronaut Corps by saying "This is a very tough job to leave, but I feel that three flights is my fair share, and I'm ready for a new challenge."[3]

In 2002, Lounge became Director of Space Shuttle and Space Station Program Development for Boeing. Two years later he became Director for Business Development for integrated defense systems and space exploration.

Lounge joined Sure Secure Solutions, an 8(a) company, as Director Business Development in March 2010.


Lounge died on March 1, 2011, of complications from liver cancer.[3]

Awards and honors


  1. ^ NASA Johnson Space Center Oral History Project. "John M. Lounge Oral History Interviews", History Portal on the Johnson Space Center website, 16 July 2010. Accessed 9 October 2018.
  2. ^ Los Angeles Times. "The Astronaut Crew", 29 September 1988. Assessed 9 October 2018.
  3. ^ a b Pearlman, Robert Z. (1 March 2011) "Mike Lounge, Three-Time Shuttle Astronaut, Dies at 64". Retrieved 2 March 2011

External links

2011 in science

The year 2011 involved many significant scientific events, including the first artificial organ transplant, the launch of China's first space station and the growth of the world population to seven billion. The year saw a total of 78 successful orbital spaceflights, as well as numerous advances in fields such as electronics, medicine, genetics, climatology and robotics.

2011 was declared the International Year of Forests and Chemistry by the United Nations.

2011 in the United States

Events in the year 2011 in the United States.

Astronaut birthplaces by US state

This article lists the birthplaces of astronauts from the United States' space program and other space travelers born in the United States or holding American citizenship. Space travelers who did not work for NASA are indicated in italics.

Canceled Space Shuttle missions

During the Space Shuttle program, several missions were canceled. Many were canceled as a result of the Challenger and the Columbia disasters. Many early missions were canceled due to delays in the development of the shuttle. Others were canceled because of changes in payload and missions requirements.

Deaths in March 2011

The following is a list of notable deaths in March 2011.

Entries for each day are listed alphabetically by surname. A typical entry lists information in the following sequence:

Name, age, country of citizenship at birth, subsequent country of citizenship (if applicable), reason for notability, cause of death (if known), and reference.

List of University of Colorado Boulder alumni

The following is a list of notable people who attended or graduated from the University of Colorado Boulder.

List of astronauts educated at the United States Naval Academy

Over 50 United States astronauts have graduated from the United States Naval Academy (USNA), more than from any other undergraduate institution. The Naval Academy is an undergraduate college in Annapolis, Maryland with the mission of educating and commissioning officers for the United States Navy and Marine Corps. The Academy is often referred to as Annapolis. Sports media refer to the Academy as "Navy" and the students as "Midshipmen"; this usage is officially endorsed. During the latter half of the 19th century and the first decades of the 20th, the United States Naval Academy was the primary source of U.S. Navy and Marine Corps officers, with the Class of 1881 being the first to provide officers to the Marine Corps. Graduates of the Academy are also given the option of entering the United States Army or United States Air Force; known as cross-commissioning. Most Midshipmen are admitted through the congressional appointment system. The curriculum emphasizes various fields of engineering. Annapolis graduates who enter aviation and space-related fields have the opportunity to be selected for astronaut training by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

This list is drawn from graduates of the Naval Academy who became astronauts. The Academy was founded in 1845 and graduated its first class in 1846. The first alumnus to fly as an astronaut was Alan Shepard, class of 1945. As of June 2017, the most recent alumni to complete astronaut training was Nicole Mann, class of 1999. Kayla Barron, class of 2010 was selected as an astronaut candidate in June 2017, but has not yet completed her training. Two alumni were part of Project Mercury, three part of Project Gemini, seven part of the Apollo program, three have walked on the moon, one was part of the Apollo-Soyuz Test Project, and forty-two were part of the Space Shuttle program.

In addition to the 52 astronauts who are alumni of the Academy, over 990 noted scholars from a variety of academic fields are Academy graduates, including 45 Rhodes Scholars and 16 Marshall Scholars. Additional notable graduates include 1 President of the United States, 2 Nobel Prize recipients, and 73 Medal of Honor recipients.

List of human spaceflights, 1981–1990

This is a detailed list of human spaceflights from 1981 to 1990, spanning the end of the Soviet Union's Salyut space station program, the beginning of Mir, and the start of the US Space Shuttle program.

Red indicates fatalities.

Green indicates suborbital flights (including flights that failed to attain intended orbit).

List of people from Colorado

This is a list of people from the American state of Colorado. It includes people that lived, were born, were raised, or have significant relations with the state.

Coloradans have been prominent in many fields, including literature, entertainment, art, music, politics, and business. This list attempts to maintain biographical notability of significant Coloradans, and to organize historically important men and women hailing from Colorado.

List of space travelers by nationality

The criteria for determining who has achieved human spaceflight vary. The FAI defines spaceflight as any flight over 100 kilometres (62 mi). In the United States, professional, military, and commercial astronauts who travel above an altitude of 80 kilometres (50 mi) are awarded astronaut wings. The majority of people who have flown into space have done so by entering Earth orbit. This list includes persons meeting all three criteria, in separate subdivisions.

The flags indicate the space traveler's nationality at the time of their flight or flights. In cases of dual citizenship, the space traveler is listed under their primary residence. A secondary list appended to the entry for the Soviet Union shows the birth countries of space travelers not born in Russia. A similar list after the entry for the United States shows the birth countries of space travelers who are or were citizens of the U.S. but were born elsewhere. Flags shown in the secondary lists are those in use at the time of the space travelers' birth.Names in italic are space travelers who are not part of any national astronaut program or astronaut corps (Toyohiro Akiyama, Helen Sharman, the Space Adventures customers and the sub-orbital SpaceShipOne pilots).

Except for the SpaceShipOne pilots, all of the space travellers have been crew or participants aboard flights launched by China, the Soviet Union/Russia or the United States.

List of spaceflight records

This is a list of spaceflight records. Most of these records relate to human spaceflights, but some unmanned and animal records are listed as well.

NASA Astronaut Group 9

NASA Astronaut Group 9 was a group of 19 astronauts announced on May 29, 1980, and completed their training by 1981. This group was selected to supplement the 35 astronauts that had been selected in 1978, and marked the first time that non-Americans were trained as mission specialists with the selections of ESA astronauts Claude Nicollier and Wubbo Ockels. In keeping with the previous group, astronaut candidates were divided into pilots and mission specialists, with eight pilots, eleven mission specialists, and two international mission specialists within the group.


STS-26 was the 26th NASA Space Shuttle mission and the seventh flight of the orbiter Discovery. The mission launched from Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on 29 September 1988, and landed four days later on 3 October. STS-26 was declared the "Return to Flight" mission, being the first mission after the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster of 28 January 1986. It was the first mission since STS-9 to use the original STS numbering system, the first to have all its crew members wear pressure suits for launch and landing since STS-4, and the first mission with bailout capacity since STS-4. STS-26 was also the first all-veteran crew mission since Apollo 11, with all of its crew members having flown at least one prior mission.


STS-35 was the tenth flight of Space Shuttle Columbia, the 38th shuttle flight, and a mission devoted to astronomical observations with ASTRO-1, a Spacelab observatory consisting of four telescopes. The mission launched from Kennedy Space Center in Florida on 2 December 1990.


STS-51-I was the 20th mission of NASA's Space Shuttle program and the sixth flight of Space Shuttle Discovery. During the mission, Discovery deployed three communications satellites into orbit. The mission launched from Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on August 27, 1985, and landed at Edwards Air Force Base, California, on September 3.


STS-61-F was a United States Space Shuttle mission planned to launch on 15 May 1986 using Challenger. It was cancelled after Challenger was destroyed earlier that year.


The VFA-201, Strike Fighter Squadron was an aviation unit of the United States Naval Reserve based at Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base Fort Worth, Texas (USA). It was established in 1970 as part of Reserve Carrier Air Wing 20 (CVWR-20) and deactivated in 2007. During its service VFA-201 could be identified by the tail code "AF" and nose numbers (MODEX) in the "100" series, typically 100 to 113. The squadron's nickname was the Hunters.

Vance D. Brand

Vance DeVoe Brand (born May 9, 1931) is an American former naval officer and aviator, aeronautical engineer, test pilot, and NASA astronaut. He served as command module pilot during the first U.S.-Soviet joint spaceflight in 1975, and as commander of three Space Shuttle missions.

His flight experience includes 9,669 flying hours, which includes 8,089 hours in jets, 391 hours in helicopters, 746 hours in spacecraft, and checkout in more than 30 types of military aircraft.

Mission Specialists
International Mission Specialists

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