pace Shuttle and space station astronaut born December 18th, 1951 in Adelaide. The first Aussie in Space.
Andy has a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering with First Class Honours from University of Adelaide in 1973 and his doctorate at the same uni in 1978.
Moved to USA becoming a research scientist at Lockheed in Marietta, Georgia in 1977 and becoming principal aerodynamic scientist in 1980.
In 1986 Andy became a US citizen.
In 1989 he moved to Pasadena, California to work on NASA sponsored research, some which related to Shuttle missions.
In 1992 Dr. Thomas was selected by NASA and after a year of training at the Johnson Space Center he was assigned to the astronaut corps as a mission specialist on Space Shuttle flight crews.
He then trained at the Gagarin (named for the first man in space, Yuri) Cosmonaut Training Centre in Star City, Russia. preparing himself for a long-duration stay on space station Mir.
In May 1996 Andy flew his first space mission aboard Endeavour (how apt, after Captain Cook), travelling some 4.1 million miles in 160 orbits and clocking 240 hours in space, ie. around the world in 90 minutes, not 80 days!
Again aboard Endeavour, he launched in January, 1998 to meet up with Mir and a 3 month stay aboard the space station.
Girls, 5ft 8in or 1.73m tall Andy is still single and his interests are horse riding, mountain biking, running, windsurfing and playing the classical guitar.
In December 1998 he was awarded the Order of Friendship by Boris Yeltsin following his 130 day mission on the Russian space station Mir earlier in the year, when he added some 90 million kms to his frequent flier points.
Andy puts his success down to hard work and achieving his personal goal by determination, focus and a committment to the effort.