Bruce PittmanBruce Pittman is a founding member of the Alliance for Commercial Enterprise and Education in Space and is the Director, Flight Project for the NASA Commercial Space Portal at the Ames Research Center. He has been involved in high technology product development, project management and system engineering for over 30 years.
Senior Systems Engineer
NASA Research Park
Bruce Pittman has been at the forefront of commercial
space development for public benefit for over thirty years. Currently he is Senior Vice President and Senior Operating Officer of the National Space Society and Chair of the AIAA Commercial Space Group. In 2013, for his exceptional lifelong contributions, Mr. Pittman was awarded NASA's highest honor for a non-government individual: The NASA Distinguished Public Service Medal.
Mr. Pittman was an originating founder and developer of SpaceHab Space Research Laboratory, the first commercial endeavor on a manned space vehicle. SpaceHab flew on 22 Space Shuttle missions, realized over $1B in contracted sales, and opened the door for a wide range of research in basic science, life sciences, materials sciences, educational projects, and commercial applications.
In 2005, Mr. Pittman was instrumental in the initiation and
development of the Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) concept
which was announced to the public in 2006. The value of this approach was
spectacularly demonstrated by SpaceX in 2010 with its successful orbital flight
and landing of the Dragon capsule, the first private organization in history to
have achieved this milestone at a fraction of the cost of traditional procurement approaches.
Co-Developed with Rob Kelso of NASA JSC the Innovative Lunar Demonstrations Data program, a new
commercial lunar initiative to leverage the Google Lunar X Prize for NASA and
public benefits. Through
this initiative, announced in October 2010, NASA committed to purchase data
related to innovative lunar missions from six Google Lunar X PRIZE teams. NASA awarded small, firm-fixed price,
indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contracts worth at least $10,000 to
these companies, making them eligible to make later sales of lunar data worth
as much as $10 million each. In
exchange, each of these companies will provide NASA with unique and valuable
data regarding the demonstration of critical technical components required to
mount successful, low cost missions to the lunar surface. These purchases demonstrate clearly that a new
era of lunar exploration has begun, one in which government space agencies and
commercial firms alike will play an important role in making missions to the
Moon participatory and financially sustainable.
2010, Mr. Pittman was an initiating founder of the International Lunar Research
Park, a public-private international partnership concept that received
unanimous endorsement by the international community at the JUSTSAP 2010
conference (Japan-U.S. Science Technology and Applications Program). As one of the conference organizers,
Pittman was instrumental in focusing the conference on developing a critical
path toward building sustainable robotic and human settlements beyond
emphasis was given to evaluating both the benefits and feasible approaches to
establishing a multi-national research park on the Moon that would be developed
by a consortium of space-faring nations from around the world.
Robert Bruce Pittman’s career history is rich with
contributions that have benefited both NASA and the nation and increased
opportunities for public participation in the space program. In addition to the achievements
described above, the following additional highlights describe some of the many
successful endeavors that Mr. Pittman has led to promote the development of
commercial space for public benefit. Pittman:
Pittman spent 11 years working at NASA Ames working on a number of space projects including Pioneer Venus, the Infrared Astronomy Satellite, the Cryogenic Grating Spectrometer, the International Space Station, and several advanced studies programs. He has worked with NASA as a consultant on such pioneering projects as the Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (2006-2007), ISS Commercialization (2005-2006) High Speed Civil Transport (1997-1998), the Space Exploration Initiative (1989-1991) and the Space Shuttle Processing (1987-1988).
Bruce was a founder and member of the startup team in a number of early growth companies including SpaceHab, Kistler Aerospace, New Focus, Product Factory, Prometheus II Ltd., Industrial Sound and Motion and most recently, TransGeneos Inc.
Some of the major clients that Bruce has worked with include: Align Technologies, Agile Software, Boeing, Behring Diagnostic, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, Varian, Cepheid, Texas Instruments, Westinghouse as well as government agencies such as NASA and DOE.
Bruce has a BS in Mechanical Engineering from U. C. Davis and a MS in Engineering Management from Santa Clara University. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Society of Concurrent Product Development. Bruce is also an Associate Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics and founder and first chairman of the System Engineering Technical Committee. Currently, Bruce serves as a founding member of the organizing committee for the Space Investment Summit series and a member of the Aerospace Technology Working Group (ATWG). He has authored over 2 dozen papers on technical and management topics in aerospace and high technology. In addition to his technical work Bruce is also a member of the adjunct faculty in the Graduate Engineering School at Santa Clara University.
While working at NASA, Bruce was awarded two Superior Achievement Awards and two Group Achievement Awards. He also received a Distinguished Leadership Award from the AIAA.