Wed, Oct 1 2014
LeTourneau University's Assistant Professor of Engineering Dr. Byron Lichtenberg, has been appointed by NASA to be the chairperson of a Standing Review Board charged with giving NASA an independent assessment of the newly awarded Commercial Crew Program contracts.
Two contract awards were announced on Sept. 16 paving the way for American-made rockets to transport astronauts and tourists to the International Space Station.
Boeing and Space X were both awarded contracts totaling almost $7 billion to develop commercial vehicles with a target launch date of 2017.
Dr. Lichtenberg, a veteran of two space shuttle missions and a long aviation career, has a dual appointment in LETU’s School of Business and the School of Engineering and Engineering Technology. He is the Program Director for the university’s newly launched Master of Engineering Management degree program. He has a background in both technical and entrepreneurial management, having founded the X-Prize Foundation (no relationship to Space X) and Zero-Gravity Corporation. He also was involved in the creation of the International Space University.
NASA creates Standing Review Boards to use both civil servants and outside consultants to assess both the technical and programmatic aspects of major programs. The Board analyzes cost, schedule, technical and program risk and provides an independent report to the senior NASA officials prior to each milestone decision.