Durham County

Astronaut Don Thomas part of library event at Stanford Warren branch

Durham County Library presents Meet the Astronaut: Don Thomas on Sunday, April 9 at 3 p.m. at the Stanford L. Warren Branch Library, 1201 Fayetteville St.

This event is free and open to the public.

In June 1995, the crew of the STS-70 mission aboard Space Shuttle Discovery was finishing their final day of training before their launch, only seven days away. Everything was looking good for the mission until it was discovered that a single woodpecker had tried to make a nest in the big fuel tank of the space shuttle, creating 205 holes in the process. During the presentation, NASA astronaut Don Thomas will discuss why the woodpecker did such a thing, what NASA did to prevent future attacks and what our astronauts accomplished on this flight, one of the more unusual missions of the Space Shuttle program.

Dr. Thomas was born in Cleveland, Ohio and received his B.S. in physics from Case Western Reserve University. He then attended Cornell University where he received his master and doctorate degrees in materials engineering. In 1990, Dr. Thomas was selected in NASA’s 13th group of astronauts and flew as a mission specialist on four space shuttle missions: STS-65, STS-70, STS-83 and STS-94. During these four missions, he performed hundreds of microgravity sciences experiments and helped deploy a large communications satellite from the space shuttle.

For more information, call 919-560-0128 or visit DurhamCountyLibrary.org.