Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center
Houston, Texas 77058
He has logged over 4,500 hours flying time in approximately 30 different types of airplanes, sailplanes, balloons, and rockets.
On his first mission Gutierrez served as pilot on the crew of STS-40 Spacelab Life Sciences (SLS-l), a dedicated space and life sciences mission, which launched from the Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on June 5, 1991. SLS-l was a nine-day mission during which crew members performed experiments which explored how humans, animals, and cells respond to microgravity and re-adapt to Earth's gravity on return. Other payloads included experiments designed to investigate materials science, plant biology and cosmic radiation. Following 146 orbits of the Earth and 218 hours in space, Columbia and her crew returned to land at Edwards Air Force Base, California, on June 14, 1991.
After his first flight, Gutierrez served as spacecraft communicator (CAPCOM) - the voice link between the flight crew and mission control - for STS-42, 45, 46, 49 and 52. In 1992 he became the Astronaut Office Branch Chief for Operations Development, overseeing ascent, entry, abort, software, rendezvous, Shuttle systems, main engines, solid rocket boosters, external tank, and landing and rollout issues.
On his second mission, Col. Gutierrez served as Commander of STS-59 Space Radar Laboratory (SRL-l). SRL-l, part of Mission to Planet Earth, was an ll-day flight dedicated to the study of the Earth and the atmosphere around it. The two primary payloads were the Space-borne Imaging Radar-C/X-Band Synthetic Aperture Radar (SIR-C/X-SAR), and Measurement of Air Pollution from Space (MAPS). The crew completed over 400 precise maneuvers (a Shuttle record) to properly point the radar, imaged over 400 selected sites with approximately 14,000 photographs (a Shuttle record) and recorded enough data to fill 26,000 encyclopedias. Areas of investigation included ecology, oceanography, geology, and hydrology. Launching on April 9, 1994, from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, the Endeavour and her crew of six completed 183 orbits of the Earth and 270 hours in space before landing at Edwards AFB, California, on April 20, 1994.