Dr. Franklin Chang Díaz

Dr. Franklin Chang Díaz

Chief Executive Officer
Ad Astra Rocket Company

Former NASA Astronaut

Dr. Franklin Chang Díaz is Chairman and CEO of Ad Astra Rocket Company, a Texas based US aerospace firm developing high-power in-space electric propulsion. Ad Astra’s Costa Rica subsidiary focuses on green hydrogen and renewable energy infrastructure globally. A former NASA astronaut and veteran of 7 space missions, he logged over 1,600 hours in space, including 19 hours in three space walks, during his 25-year NASA career. In 1994, he founded and directed NASA’s Advanced Space Propulsion Laboratory to develop the physics of his 1980 invention, the VASIMR® rocket, and founded Ad Astra in 2005 to commercialize the technology. Inducted in the US Astronaut Hall of Fame in 2012, Dr. Chang Díaz is a four-time recipient of NASA’s Distinguished Service Medal, the agency’s highest honor. He holds a PhD in applied plasma physics from MIT and a BS in mechanical engineering from the University of Connecticut. He is Adjunct Professor of Physics at Rice University and the University of Houston. 

Related Sessions

International Teacher Liaison Workshop

Monday, April 8, 2024

8:00 am - 4:00 pm