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Photo of Joel Rademacher
   Joel Rademacher
   MER Payload Project Element Manager
Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Pasadena, California
United States Of America
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High School: Skyline High School, Longmont,  CO
BS Aerospace Engineering, University of Colorado at Boulder
MS Aerospace Engineering, Arizona State University
In Progress: PhD Aerospace Engineering, University of Southern California

Background Information
I have continuously been involved with space missions throughout my college and professional career. My first experience was as an undergraduate student structural design engineer for a small student designed suite of instruments that flew as a Get Away Special on space shuttle discovery in 1993. This was done at the University of Colorado through the Colorado Space Grant Consortium. I then went to Arizona State University for my Masters program and started a small student-designed satellite project with Dr. Helen Reed through the Arizona Space Grant Program. I finished my Masters degree and went to JPL in 1996. The ASU satellite launched in 2000. At JPL, I have worked as the system engineer and integration and test lead on several small space instruments including a small active pixel sensor imager, a plasma wave antenna that flew on Deep Space One, and a suite of instruments that was built for the Mars 2001 lander that has not yet flown to mars. That instrument, called MECA, is scheduled to go to Mars as part of the Mars Scout, Phoenix mission in 2007. I then accepted the responsibilities of Payload Project Element Manager for the MER payload instruments including the Alpha Particle Xray Spectrometer (APXS), the Moessbauer Spectrometer (MB), and the Miniature Thermal Emission Spectrometer (Mini-TES). I managed their delivery, testing, and integration, and I am continuing to support the MER project as a Science Downlink Coordinator and an Imaging Downlink Coordinator. For the past year, I have also been the Group Supervisor for the Payload Development and Integration Group in the JPL Flight Systems Section.

Contributions to Mars Exploration

I was the System Engineer for the Mars Environmental Compatibility Assessment (MECA) instrument that is now part of the 2007 Mars Scout mission. I delivered MECA for the Mars 2001 Lander that was cancelled. [more contributions ...]
Personal Reflections

Get hands-on engineering and technician experience whenever possible. What you learn from handling hardware teaches you how that hardware can be used and operated. [more personal reflections ...]