Gerald P. Carr

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Gerald P. Carr
Gerald P. Carr 2.jpg
NASA Astronaut
Born (1932-08-22) August 22, 1932 (age 86)
Denver, Colorado, U.S.
Other names
Gerald Paul Carr
Other occupation
Naval aviator, engineer
USC, B.Eng. 1954
NPS, B.S. 1961
Princeton University, M.S. 1962
RankUS-O6 insignia.svg Colonel, USMC
Time in space
84d 01h 15 m
Selection1966 NASA Group 5
Total EVAs
Total EVA time
15 hours 51 minute[1]
MissionsSkylab 4
Mission insignia
RetirementJune 25, 1977
AwardsNASA Distinguished Service Medal.jpg

Gerald Paul Carr (born August 22, 1932), (Col, USMC, Ret.), is an American mechanical and aeronautical engineer, former United States Marine Corps officer, naval aviator, and former NASA astronaut. He was Commander of Skylab 4, the third and final manned visit to the Skylab Orbital Workshop, from November 16, 1973 to February 8, 1974.


Early life and education[edit]

Carr was born in Denver, Colorado on August 22, 1932, but was raised in Santa Ana, California, which he considers his home town. He graduated from Santa Ana High School in Santa Ana in 1950, where he played varsity football and was president of the honor society and bachelor's club; Carr received a Bachelor of Engineering degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Southern California in 1954, a Bachelor of Science degree in Aeronautical Engineering from the U.S. Naval Postgraduate School in 1961, and a Master of Science degree in Aeronautical Engineering from Princeton University in 1962.

Military service[edit]

Carr began his military service with the U.S. Navy, and in 1950 he was appointed a Midshipman with the Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps (NROTC) detachment at the University of Southern California. Upon graduation in 1954, he received his commission in the U.S. Marine Corps and subsequently reported to The Basic School at Marine Corps Base Quantico, Virginia. He received flight training at Naval Air Station Pensacola, Florida, and Naval Air Station Kingsville, Texas, and was then assigned to VMF(AW)-114 where he gained experience in the F9F Cougar and the F-6A Skyray.

After postgraduate training, he served with VMFA(AW)-122, from 1962 to 1965, piloting the F-8 Crusader in the United States and the Far East. Other aircraft he has flown include the F-4, T-1A, T-28, T-33, T-38, H-13, and ground effect machines.

He has logged more than 8,000 flying hours, 5,365 hours of which are jet time.

NASA career[edit]

Carr was one of the 19 astronauts selected by NASA in April 1966. When informed by NASA of his selection for astronaut training, he was assigned to the test directors section of Marine Air Control Squadron 3, a unit responsible for the testing and evaluation of the Marine Tactical Data System. He served as a member of the astronaut support crews and as CAPCOM for the Apollo 8 and 12 flights, and was involved in the development and testing of the Lunar Roving Vehicle. He was in the likely crew rotation position to serve as Lunar Module Pilot for Apollo 19 before this mission was canceled by NASA in 1970.

Skylab 4[edit]

Carr demonstrates weightlessness by balancing Skylab 4 crewmate William R. Pogue on his finger

Carr was Commander of Skylab 4 (third and final manned visit to the Skylab Orbital Workshop) launched November 16, 1973 with splashdown on February 8, 1974. He was the first rookie astronaut to command a mission since Neil Armstrong on Gemini 8 and was accompanied on the record-setting 34.5-million-mile flight by Science Pilot Dr. Edward Gibson and Pilot William R. Pogue. The crew successfully completed 56 experiments, 26 science demonstrations, 15 subsystem-detailed objectives, and 13 student investigations during their 1,214 orbits of the Earth. They also acquired extensive Earth resources observation data using hand-held cameras and Skylab's Earth Resources Experiment Package camera and sensor array. They logged 338 hours of operations of the Apollo Telescope Mount, which made extensive observations of the sun's solar processes.

From February 1974 until March 1978, Carr and his Skylab 4 teammates shared the world record for individual time in space: 2,017 hours 15 minutes 32 seconds, and Carr logged 15 hours and 51 minute in three EVAs outside the Orbital Workshop.[2]

In mid-1977, Carr was named head of the design support group within the Astronaut Office responsible for providing crew support to such activities as space transportation system design, simulations, testing, and safety assessment, and for development of man/machine interface requirements.

Carr retired from the U.S. Marine Corps in September 1975 and from NASA in June 1977.

Skylab 4 Controversy[edit]

We would never work 16 hours a day for 84 straight days on the ground, and we should not be expected to do it here in space.

Jerry Carr to NASA, just before the crew went on strike.[3]

On December 28, 1973, the crew of Skylab 4 shut off the radio and took the day off, floating around, enjoying space, and taking photos of Earth. They were protesting micromanagement, employer spying, and long hours. The Skylab controversy were thus involved in the first labor strike to occur in space.[4]

Post-NASA career[edit]

From 1977 until 1981 Carr was a senior Vice President with Bovay Engineers, Inc., a Houston consulting engineering firm.

He was a senior consultant on special staff to the President of Applied Research, Inc., Los Angeles, California from 1981 to 1983. From 1983 until 1985 Carr was manager of The University of Texas 300-inch (7.6 m) Telescope Project.

Carr founded CAMUS, Inc. in 1984 based in Vermont. The family-owned corporation provides technical support services in zero-gravity human factors engineering, procedures development, operations analysis, training and systems integration. CAMUS was a major contributor as a technical support subcontractor to Boeing in the crew systems design of the International Space Station. In addition, the corporation is involved in fine art production designed by Carr's wife, artist and sculptor Pat Musick.


Carr is a fellow of the American Astronautical Society; a former Director of the Sunsat Energy Council; a former Director of the Houston Pops Orchestra; a Director of the National Space Society; the Marine Corps Association and the Marine Corps Aviation Association; The National Naval Aviation Museum Foundation; Society of Experimental Test Pilots; The Order of Daedalians; National Society of Professional Engineers; University of Southern California Alumni Association, and Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity.

Awards and honors[edit]

He was presented with an Honorary Doctorate of Science, Aeronautical Engineering, from Parks College of Saint Louis University, Cahokia, Illinois, in 1976.

He was awarded the National Defense Service Medal; Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal; Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal, and a Letter of Commendation from the Commander of Carrier Division Two; received the NASA Group Achievement Award, 1971; NASA Distinguished Service Medal, 1974; Navy Distinguished Service Medal and the Navy Astronaut Wings; 1974; City of Chicago Gold Medal, 1974; University of Southern California Alumni Merit Award, 1974; Boy Scouts of America Distinguished Eagle Scout Award, 1974; Robert J. Collier Trophy for 1973, in 1974; City of New York Gold Medal, 1974; Marine Corps Aviation Association's Exceptional Achievement Award, 1974; Dr. Robert H. Goddard Memorial Trophy, 1975; also recipient of the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale's Gold Space Medal; De la Vaulx Medal, and V. M. Komarov Diploma for 1974; AIAA Haley Astronautics Award for 1974; and the American Astronautical Society's 1975 Flight Achievement Award. Carr was inducted into the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame in 1997.

In 1975, Gerald P. Carr Intermediate School (previously Ralph C. Smedley Junior High) in Santa Ana, California, was renamed in Carr's honor, and the school's team name is the Astros, in honor of Carr's NASA achievements.

Physical description[edit]

  • Weight: 160 lb (73 kg)
  • Height: 5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)
  • Hair: Brown
  • Eyes: Blue[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Gerald P. Carr's EVA experience
  2. ^ Lee Ellis. Who's who of NASA astronauts. p. 234.
  3. ^ "The day when three NASA astronauts staged a strike in space". Retrieved 2019-01-06.
  4. ^ "The day when three NASA astronauts staged a strike in space". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved January 6, 2019.
  5. ^ Gerald P. Carr's physical description

External links[edit]