Chandra X-ray Observatory News
Fred S. Wojtalik, manager, Observatory Projects Office
Fred S. Wojtalik is manager of NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory Program and manager of the Observatory Projects Office at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. He was appointed to this position in 1988 after serving almost two years as deputy manager of the office.
NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory, the world's most powerful X-ray telescope, will help scientists understand the structure and evolution of the universe.
Wojtalik manages and coordinates project planning, budgeting, scheduling, engineering design and development, testing and evaluation, and operations planning and development of the Chandra X-ray Observatory program and systems, including support equipment and facilities.
In 1960, Wojtalik transferred from the U.S. Army Ballistic Missile Agency to the Marshall Center's Guidance and Control Division in the former Astrionics Laboratory.
Wojtalik has held a number of positions at Marshall Center with increasing responsibility, including chief, Systems Division of the former Astrionics Laboratory; manager, Applications Engineering and User Information Office; and deputy director of the Electronics and Control Laboratory.
In 1975, he was named chief engineer for the High-Energy Astronomy Observatory program, a series of three astrophysics observatories that were launched between 1977 and 1979. Wojtalik was appointed associate director for engineering in the Science and Engineering Directorate in 1980. He was selected as director of the Information and Electronic Systems Laboratory when it was created in 1982.
In 1983, he was assigned to the Hubble Space Telescope Project Office as deputy manager for Systems Engineering and Integration. In 1986, he became deputy manager of the Hubble Space Telescope program and held that position until his selection as manager of Observatory Programs. From 1988 until 1991, he served as project manager for both the Hubble and Chandra observatories. He was a 1994 recipient of NASA's Distinguished Executive Presidential Rank award, presented to only 1 percent of federal executives. Wojtalik also received the National Space Club Engineer of the Year Award in 1994. He was among NASA's 1991 Presidential Rank Recipients receiving the Meritorious Executive recognition award, and he received the NASA Distinguished Service Medal that same year for his work on the Hubble Space Telescope. In 1980, he was awarded the NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal for exemplary leadership in technical management of the High-Energy Astronomy Observatory project. In 1971, Wojtalik received the NASA Exceptional Service Medal for his contributions toward development of the Lunar Rover vehicle used on the Moon by Apollo astronauts.
As a member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers, Wojtalik has presented a number of technical papers published in professional literature.
Born in Hamtramck, Mich., Wojtalik graduated from Hamtramck High School. He was awarded a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from Michigan State University in East Lansing in 1952 and obtained a master's in management from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge in 1969.
May 20, 1999
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