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David J. Wilson
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Mission - Biographies

David J. Wilson
Impactor IPT Lead, Deep Impact
David J. Wilson

What is the coolest thing about Deep Impact?
We are going to smash a big hole in the comet. It is surreal.

Why do you like working at Ball Aerospace?
The people. They are dedicated, fun, and sharp.

How did you end up in the aerospace industry?
I moved to Colorado in 1987 - jobs were scarce at that time. I went to a job fair that Ball Aerospace held and I have been here ever since.

What do you do in your spare time?
Rock climb, backpack, fly fish, backcountry ski...anything that gets me into the wilds.

What is one yet-to-be achieved life goal?
I would like to live overseas.

What do you hope to learn from the Deep Impact mission?
I hope to learn how to do an interplanetary mission in partnership with JPL.

Who inspired you?
My father. He was a journeyman electrician by 18. He put himself through undergraduate and graduate school and eventually became a research scientist at IBM. He has that uncanny knack of being able to understand the theory behind things and the ability to make them himself.

Were you a science-oriented kid?
I enjoyed the lab work...

What was your favorite book as a kid?
The Outsiders.

What did you want to be when you were a kid?
A bounty hunter.

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Last Updated: 28 Jun 2010