Andrew J. Feustel

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Andrew J. Feustel
NASA Astronaut
Nationality American
Status Active
Born (1965-08-25) August 25, 1965 (age 52)
Lancaster, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Other names
Andrew Jay Feustel
Other occupation
Oakland Community College, A.S. 1985
Purdue University, B.S. 1989, M.S. 1991
Queen's University, Ph.D. 1995
Time in space
28d 15h 17m
Selection 2000 NASA Group
Total EVAs
Total EVA time
42 hours, 18 minutes[1]
Missions STS-125, STS-134
Mission insignia
STS-125 patch.svg STS-134 Patch.svg

Andrew Jay "Drew" Feustel (/ˈfɔɪstəl/; born August 25, 1965) is an American geophysicist and a NASA astronaut. His first spaceflight in May 2009, STS-125, lasted just under 13 days.[2][3] This was a mission with six other astronauts to repair the Hubble Space Telescope, aboard Space Shuttle Atlantis. Feustel performed three spacewalks during the mission.[4] Following several years working as a geophysicist, Feustel was selected as an astronaut candidate by NASA in July 2000. His second spaceflight was STS-134, which launched on May 16, 2011 and landed on June 1, 2011. STS-134 was the penultimate Space Shuttle flight.

Education and early career[edit]

Feustel was born in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.[2][5] He grew up in Lake Orion, Michigan, where he graduated from Lake Orion High School in 1983, and received an AS degree from Oakland Community College in 1985. He then attended Purdue University, where he was a member of Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity and received both a BS degree in Solid Earth Sciences (1989) and a MS degree in Geophysics (1991). He then moved to Ontario, Canada to attend Queen's University, where he received his PhD in Geological Sciences in 1995.[2]

While attending community college, Feustel worked as an auto mechanic at International Autoworks, Ltd., Farmington Hills, Michigan, restoring 1950s Jaguars.[2] At Purdue University, Feustel served as a Residence Hall Counselor for two years at Cary Quadrangle for the Purdue University Student Housing organization. His summers were spent working as a commercial and industrial glazier near his home in Michigan. During his Master‘s degree studies Feustel worked as a Research Assistant and Teaching Assistant in the Earth and Atmospheric Sciences Department of Purdue University. His M.S. thesis investigated physical property measurements of rock specimens under elevated hydrostatic pressures simulating Earth’s deep crustal environments. While at Purdue, Feustel served for three years as Grand Prix Chairman and team Kart driver for Sigma Phi Epsilon Fraternity.[2] In 1991, Feustel moved to Kingston, Ontario, Canada to attend Queen’s University where he worked as a Graduate Research Assistant and Graduate Teaching Assistant. Feustel’s Ph.D. thesis investigated seismic wave attenuation in underground mines and measurement techniques and applications to site characterization.[2]

For three years he worked as a Geophysicist for the Engineering Seismology Group, Kingston, Ontario, Canada, installing and operating microseismic monitoring equipment in underground mines throughout Eastern Canada and the United States. In 1997, Feustel began working for the Exxon Exploration Company (now ExxonMobil Exploration Company), Houston, Texas, as an Exploration Geophysicist designing and providing operational oversight of land, marine, and borehole seismic programs worldwide.[2]

NASA career[edit]

Feustel re-entering the International Space Station after the second spacewalk of the STS-134 mission.

After working in industry for five years, Feustel was selected as astronaut candidate by NASA in July 2000. In August 2002, he began NASA's two-year training program, training as a mission specialist. He is currently assigned to the Astronaut Office Space Shuttle and Space Station Branches, where he has been serving in technical support assignments.

In July 2006, Feustel served as an aquanaut during the NEEMO 10 mission aboard the Aquarius underwater laboratory, living and working underwater for seven days.[6] In October 2006, Feustel was announced as a crew member for STS-125, the final Hubble servicing mission by the Space Shuttle. STS-125 launched on May 11, 2009.[3]


Feustel's first mission was STS-125, which was successfully launched to repair the Hubble Space Telescope on May 11, 2009. On this mission, Feustel was a Mission Specialist, and performed three spacewalks to help repair the telescope itself.[5] During the mission, Feustel accumulated a total EVA time of twenty hours and thirty eight minutes. He took with him a copy of "Cosmic Songs" (1878) by the Czech poet Jan Neruda.


Feustel was a Mission Specialist on the STS-134 mission, during which he performed three more spacewalks.[7] During this mission Feustel took a soft toy of the comic character Mole to space. In July 2011 Feustel and his family flew to Czech Republic to give that Mole to his creator the Czech animator and illustrator Zdeněk Miler.[8] He was very happy and thanked Feustel with an artwork of him. Just four months later Miler died at the age of 90 years.

Expedition 55/56[edit]

Feustel will return to the ISS in 2018 for a six month[9] stay during Expedition 55/56. He will serve as a flight engineer on Expedition 55, and become the ISS commander of Expedition 56.[10]

Personal life[edit]

Feustel is married to Indira Devi Bhatnagar. Andrew and Indira met as undergraduates at the beginning of their mutual freshman year at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana; they have two sons, Ari and Aden. He enjoys automobile restoration, skiing and guitar, and is a member of the astronaut band Max Q.[2] He is also a member of the Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity.


 This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

  1. ^ "Biographies of U.S. Astronauts: Feustel Andrew Jay "Drew"". Retrieved January 21, 2017. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h NASA (October 2008). "Andrew J. Feustel". NASA. Archived from the original on May 14, 2009. Retrieved May 17, 2009. 
  3. ^ a b NASA (May 11, 2009). "STS-125 MCC Status Report #01". NASA. Archived from the original on May 15, 2009. Retrieved May 11, 2009. 
  4. ^ "Feustel". Encyclopedia Astronautica. Archived from the original on November 29, 2010. Retrieved December 10, 2010. 
  5. ^ a b NASA (July 31, 2008). "Preflight Interview: Andrew Feustel, Mission Specialist". NASA9. Archived from the original on September 25, 2008. Retrieved September 21, 2008. 
  6. ^ NASA (2006). "NASA Uses Undersea Lab to Prep for Future Space Exploration". NASA. Retrieved September 23, 2011. 
  7. ^ NASA (May 2011). "STS-134 Mission Summary" (PDF). NASA. Retrieved January 13, 2012. 
  8. ^ "Pictures of Feustel during the surrender of the soft toy Mole in Czech Republic + article (Zemřel Zdeněk Miler. Otec Krtka, kterého nám závidí Hollywood)" (in Czech). 2011-11-30. Retrieved 2016-01-25. 
  9. ^ Interview with Feustel, October 6, 2016.
  10. ^ Karen Northon (January 4, 2017). "NASA Assigns Upcoming Space Station Crew Members". NASA press release 17-001. Retrieved January 21, 2017. 

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