Conor Cullinane

NASA Space Technology Research Fellow

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Who Am I?

The word "leader" is overused and often misused. It seems the term has come to be defined as the loudest or most pushy individual in a group. I maintain, however, that a leader does not simply order action to be taken, but rather takes action, motivating others to do the same. When I give 100% of my effort, it sets an example that inspires a matched effort from those around me. Personal Motivation the Aero/Astro industries were built by fanatics looking to the sky in awe and resolving to do what most believed impossible. I grew up in NH where my house was under the pattern of the local grass airstrip, Hampton Airfield (7B3). I used to sit there and watch as small planes passed over, one by one, all day long. When I was 14, I started building and flying model airplanes with my local model aviation club, spending Saturdays at the field growing my passion and immersed in a community of enthusiasts. In June, 2013, I enrolled in flight school at 7B3, obtaining my Private Pilot's License in August, 2014. I am currently working towards getting my instrument rating, but my ultimate goal is to obtain my seaplane rating. In 2014, I joined the Commemorative Air Force's Gulf Coast Wing in Houston, where I help to maintain and fly old warbirds. I am currently training as a flight engineer on the B-17 Flying Fortress!Aeronautics is only half of Aero/Astro, so naturally I found a passion for Astronautics as well. When I was 8 years old, my parents took my family to the Kennedy Space Center (KSC). While there, we saw a night launch of a Delta III. I still get chills when I remember that rocket billowing smoke, emitting an ear splitting roar, and generating enough light to illuminate the night sky as if it were day. We spent the next day at the visitor center, where my love for space was cemented. I returned to Kennedy on Dec. 5, 2014 to watch the launch of EFT-1, Orion aboard a Delta IV. I have since returned to watch SpaceX launch a commercial resupply mission for the ISS as well as 11 satellites for Orbcomm. The Orbcomm launch was special because it was the first time that SpaceX attempted to land the first stage booster back on land, succeeding. The booster landing produced a sonic boom, which was the first sonic boom produced by a spacecraft at KSC since the last time the shuttle landed. My love of Aero/Astro has driven me to apply my expertise in engineering and medicine to developing improved and safer exploration capabilities for crewmembers on deep space exploration missions.