AAC Monthly Meeting

  • 13 Sep 2022
  • 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM
  • Kika Silva Pla Planetarium & Zoom


Registration is closed

Our speaker will be attending in person, please try to attend in person too!


7:00 - 7:15 General Meeting & Announcements
7:15 - 7:30 Short topic presentation by a club member

7:30 - 7:45 Refreshment break

7:45 - Public Presentation


Tim Dunn

NASA Launch Director

Launch Services Program 

NASA John F. Kennedy Space Center

Topic: NASA’s Launch Support Program and Astronomy


The Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory (GRAIL) was an American lunar science mission which used high-quality gravitational field mapping of the Moon to determine its interior structure. The Mars Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport (InSight) lander continues to study the deep interior of the planet Mars. The Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security, Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-Rex) is an asteroid-study that is to return a sample to Earth in 2023. Three high visibility NASA missions that we all know about, but have you ever considered the complexities associated with getting these missions into space in the first place? Tim Dunn will provide an overview of NASA’s Launch Services Program (LSP) planning, directing and implementation of these three launch campaigns.

About the Speaker:

Tim Dunn is the NASA Launch Director for the LSP at NASA's John F. Kennedy Space Center in Florida. He is responsible for planning, implementing and directing launch campaigns and countdowns of science and robotic spacecraft for NASA-managed launch vehicle services.

As an Air Force officer he served as a Global Positioning System (GPS) satellite analysis officer at the GPS Master Control Station in Colorado Springs, Colorado. He then became a Titan IV Launch Controller at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station (CCAFS), directing all spacecraft mission planning and launch campaign activities. He served on launch teams successfully launching eight Titan IV missions in a three-year period.

Dunn then worked for The Boeing Company as avionics engineer at CCAFS. He was a launch-day guidance engineer and performed guidance testing for 48 Delta II and Delta III rockets. He worked on crews launching USAF, NASA and commercial spacecraft, notably the Mars Pathfinder, Stardust, Iridium, Globalstar and numerous GPS missions.

In 2000, Dunn joined NASA and the LSP as a Delta II avionics and flight controls engineer. His precise monitoring ensured 100 percent mission success for 10 NASA missions in a three-year period, most notably Genesis, Aqua, MER-A, MER-B and SIRTF. In 2003, he became the NASA Delta II vehicle systems engineer. He led NASA's Delta II launch team in assuring technical flight readiness for 17 high-profile NASA missions including MESSENGER, Deep Impact, NOAA-N, Dawn and Kepler.

In addition to his full-time job, from 1996 to 2007 Dunn served in the Florida Air National Guard as a Range Operations Commander and flight commander during Eastern Range (ER) launches. He led the 22-member unit operating the ER's mobile telemetry system.

In 2009, Dunn became LSP's certification manager. He led the multi-disciplined technical team planning LSP's vehicle certification for NASA's next generation of rockets. He authored the Certification Implementation Strategy and developed the process for contractors to present vehicle qualification data. In 2011, Dunn was selected to be LSP's launch director and has led the NASA launch team in numerous successful missions notably the GRAIL lunar mission, Jason-3, OSIRIS-Rex, and the Mars InSight lander.

Dunn has received USAF, Boeing and NASA individual performance and group achievement awards for his work on over 115 missions launched from Kennedy Space Center, Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, and Vandenberg Space Force Base, Calif.

He earned a Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering in 1986 from the University of Alabama and a Master of Science in space operations from the Air Force Institute of Technology in Dayton, Ohio, in 1992.

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