A citizen astronaut joins Blue Origin as an engineer after flying with SpaceX

Chris Sembroski, a data engineer from the Seattle region, traveled into space for the first time in SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft last year. He now works full-time as an avionics engineer at Blue Origin in the space sector Sembroski did not mention the competition between Jeff Bezos, the man behind Amazon and Blue Origin, and the creator of SpaceX, Elon Musk, in today’s Twitter tweet.

Instead, as shown in recently published images from NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope, or JWST, Obama played up the attraction of the space frontier. “Space calls to us. It mocks us,” he said. According to Sembroski, “Hubble and JWST images of our cosmos draw on our wants to travel and seek new experiences.” I’m excited to share that I’ve joined @blueorigin and to be a part of our growth into the rest of the cosmos. Let’s move!

Sembroski’s work title is listed as “avionics engineer” on his LinkedIn profile, and the tweet’s accompanying image shows Blue Origin’s orbital-class New Glenn rocket taking flight, but he gave no other information about his responsibilities at the business. We’ve sent Sembroski an email and will update this story if we get any more details regarding the position.

When Sembroski was selected as one of four crew members for the charitable Inspiration4 space mission in September, he was a fault detection and diagnostics lead engineer at Lockheed Martin in Everett, Washington, where he had previously worked on Minuteman missiles for the U.S. Air Force. He profited from a winning lottery ticket purchased by a buddy who opted not to attempt the orbital journey.

During the three-day, free-flying expedition, Sembroski was tasked with taking images of the crew within the capsule and of the planet below. Sembroski played the ukulele during the crew’s time in space and was also seen in a viral video clip viewing “Spaceballs” on his iPad during the crew’s return to Earth. One of my favorites, Musk said in a tweet.

Sembroski departed Lockheed Martin in April and started working as a senior analytics engineer at DB Engineering in Redmond, Washington. Sembroski said at the time that he would continue pursuing his interest in space. At the time, he told SpaceXMania, “What’s amazing about all this is that when you step back, you realize that every firm is a space company. He has now altered his job path once again in order to concentrate on reaching his ideal location.

Source: Geek Wire

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Written by Alex Bruno

Freelance space writer Alex Bruno specializes in covering China's quickly expanding space industry. In 2021, he started writing for SpaceXMania. He also contributes to publications including SpaceNews, IEEE Spectrum, National Geographic, Sky & Telescope, and New Scientist. When Alex was a small child, he first experienced the space bug after seeing Voyager photographs of alien planets in our solar system. When not in space, Alex likes to go trail jogging in the Finnish countryside.

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