Dr. Mark Whorton: The Future of Earth Imaging
Mark S. Whorton, Ph.D., serves as the Chief Technologist of Teledyne Brown Engineering. In this capacity, Dr. Whorton is responsible for identification, development and integration of technologies that align strategy to growth in target markets. Whorton’s technical focus during his career has been dynamics and control of launch vehicles, spacecraft, and space structures. Since joining Teledyne Brown, he has developed innovative systems and technologies for earth imaging, orbit debris remediation, asteroid observations and capture, and medical automation systems for microbial remediation.
From 2012 to 2014, Dr. Whorton served as Director, Commercial Earth Imaging, in the Space Systems Group of Teledyne Brown Engineering. He is the Principal Investigator for the “Multiple User System for Earth Sensing” (MUSES) instrument pointing system for the International Space Station (ISS) and led the development of Teledyne’s efforts to utilize MUSES and the ISS for commercial Earth imaging.
Dr. Whorton joined Teledyne Brown as Director of Systems Development and Operations Support in early 2009 where he managed a large prime contract with the NASA MSFC Science and Mission Systems Office in the development and operations of International Space Station payloads and development of missions in the space science and earth science disciplines.
Prior to joining Teledyne, Whorton served as Chief of the Guidance, Navigation, and Mission Analysis Branch at the NASA/Marshall Space Flight Center, where he was a GN&C leader and Subject Matter Expert for the Ares I Crew Launch Vehicle. During his 20 year NASA career, he has led several advanced technology and flight systems development efforts, including serving as the Principal Investigator for a microgravity vibration isolation system for the International Space Station and for a solar-sail propulsion small satellite mission called NanoSail-D.
Whorton earned a Ph.D. in Aerospace Engineering (Flight Mechanics and Controls) from The Georgia Institute of Technology and B.S. and M.S. degrees in Aerospace Engineering from The University of Alabama. Over the course of his career, he has authored or co-authored eight refereed journal articles, over 50 conference papers, nine NASA technical papers and two books. Whorton also holds a patent in spacecraft attitude control technology.
Dr. Whorton is an Associate Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA), a member of the AIAA Technical Activities Committee, a former Chairman of the AIAA GN&C Technical Committee, a NASA Administrator’s Fellow, and an Aerospace Engineering and Mechanics Distinguished Fellow of UA.