Dr. David W. Dunham
David W. Dunham
Chief Mission Design Engineer
Space Navigation and Flight Dynamics Practice
7913 Kara Ct
Greenbelt, MD 20770-3016
Mobile phone 301-526-5590
Dr. Dunham has an extensive background in astrodynamics, spacecraft trajectory design, astronomy, and computer programming. His experience includes the design of numerous complex interplanetary and translunar trajectories for several missions, including Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous (NEAR; the nominal and recovery missions), Solar-TErrestrial RElations Observatory (STEREO); COmet Nucleus TOUR, International Cometary Explorer (ICE; it was called the third International Sun-Earth Explorer, or ISEE-3, the first libration-point mission, before a challenging series of lunar swingbys were used to change the trajectory to intercept Comet Giacobini-Zinner in
1985), Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO), Wind, and several planned missions, including, for example, the first Lucy proposal to fly by a Centaur and Trojan and Alladin (Phobos/Deimos sample return). In 2011 to 2013, he was the principal investigator of a “megagrant” from the Russian Ministry of Education and Science to
study optimum orbital strategies for human exploration beyond low-Earth orbit and for planetary protection from potentially hazardous objects, in collaboration with the Moscow Institute of Electronics and Mathematics of the National Research University “Higher school of economics”. He is now working on trajectories for the LunaH-Map low-thrust cubesat mission that will be released from the EM-1 upper stage. In addition, as president of the International Occultation Timing Association (IOTA) from the founding of IOTA in 1975 until 2013 (and now still active, serving on IOTA’s board of directors), he established and continues to lead efforts to predict, observe, and analyze solar eclipses, lunar grazing occultations, and asteroidal
occultations. He has determined the sizes and shapes of several asteroids from the observations. He participated in the recent SWRI-led campaigns in Argentina to observe occultations of two faint stars by 2014 MU69, the 2019 NH target. He obtained the first confirmed observations of lunar meteor impact flashes in November 1999.
Ph.D. Astronomy (specialty Celestial Mechanics), Yale University (1971)
B.A. Astronomy, University of California, Berkeley (1964)
2008 March - present: KinetX, Chief Mission Design Engineer,
Space Navigation and Flight Dynamics Practice
2004-2008 February: Johns Hopkins University/Applied Physic Laboratory (JHU/APL) - Mission Design, Guidance and Control Group, Space Department.
1996-2004: JHU/APL - Mission Concept and Analysis Group, Space Department.
1992-1996: JHU/APL - Guidance and Control Group, Space Department.
Technical lead for the NEAR, CONTOUR, and STEREO Mission Design Teams, which computed trajectory and attitude information for the NEAR and CONTOUR spacecraft, and for the STEREO spacecraft. He has also given presentations and supplied information about trajectories for other proposed or actual APL missions, including ACE, Grand Tour Cluster, ISP, LIME, NEPSTP, New Horizons, SpecSat, MESSENGER, New CONTOUR, and Farside.
2004-2008: Program Manager/Principal Investigator for Comparison of Solar Radius Changes from Solar Eclipse Timings with Total Solar Irradiance Measurements from ACRIM.
1995-1998: Program Manager/Principal Investigator for Occultation Star Catalog Improvement Program using Hipparcos astrometric satellite data.
1976-1992: Computer Sciences Corporation, Lanham-Seabrook, Maryland
Senior Principal Engineer and, during last 4 years, leader of the Lunar Missions Section, supervising five employees. Accomplishments included the design of trajectories for several translunar missions, including ICE/ISEE-3, Geotail, Wind, SOHO, initial design of the Clementine trajectory to the Moon and asteroid Geographos, and extended missions for Giotto and Sakigake; preparation of three
editions of the Inter-Agency Consultative Group's Handbook on Trajectories, Mission Design, and Operations; the first determination of solar radius variations from solar eclipse observations; and the determination of the sizes and shapes of several asteroids from analysis of occultation observations.
1975-1976: Cincinnati Observatory, University of Cincinnati, Ohio
Research Assistant in a computer project to cross-reference and correct errors in star catalogs.
1972-1975: Department of Astronomy, University of Texas, Austin
Research Associate. He designed software for and analyzed high-speed photoelectric lunar occultation data, and wrote computer programs for the Lunar Motion Analysis Project, mainly related to the Lunar Laser Ranging experiment.
1969-1972: Defense Mapping Agency, Aerospace Center, St. Louis,
Missouri Captain, US Air Force. He made critical reviews of various Air Force contract proposals utilizing astronomical concepts. He developed a system for predicting and precisely observing lunar grazing occultations for geodetic purposes and completed his Ph.D. dissertation on the orbits of the satellites of Uranus.
1967-1968 (Summers): U.S. Naval Observatory, Nautical Almanac Office
Astronomer. He designed and tested an n-body numerical integration program using recurrent power series and established a lunar occultation prediction system that was used for worldwide predictions. He helped with efforts to move this software to PC's
for a now distributed prediction system.
1965-1966 (Summers): Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Cal Tech, Pasadena, Calif. Astronautical Engineer. He developed formulae and software to include the gravita-tional effects of the separate Earth and Moon in the JPL planetary ephemerides.
SKILLS AND CAPABILITIES:
Extensive background in astronomy and celestial mechanics.
Experience with PC's, uses GMAT, STK-Astrogator, MAnE, Fortran.
Dr. Dunham has more than 200 significant communications (journal articles, reports, book chapters, and professional talks). A partial list of some of the most important journal articles and recent technical communications follows:
Bérard, D., Sicardy, B., Dunham, D., et al., “The structure of Chariklo’s rings from stellar occultations”, Astronomical Journal, Vol. 154, pp. 144-165, 2017 Oct.
Dunham, D. W., et al., “Planetary Occultations”, Observer’s Handbook 2017 of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada (also serves astronomers in the USA), 2016, pp 247-251. Similar articles were published by D. Dunham in the Observer’s Handbook since 2000, with contributions back to 1992.
Dunham, D. W., et al., “Sizes, Shapes, and Satellites of Asteroids from Occultations”, in Asteroids: New Observations, New Models - Proceedings of the 318th Symposium of the International Astronomical Union, Chesley, S. R., Morbidelli, A., Jedicke, R., and Farnocchia, D., ed., pp. 177-180, Cambridge Univ. Press, 2016.
Dunham, D. W., et al., “A Cubesat to Image Comet Wirtanen at its 2018 Close Approach?”, Bull. Amer. Astro. Soc., Paper 123.49, Vol. 48, No. 7, pp. 71-72, 2016.
Dunham, D., Herald, D., and Neese, C., Asteroid Occultations V11.0. EAR-A-3-RDR-OCCULTATIONS-V14.0. NASA Planetary Data System, 2016. This on-line database of all available observations and results from occultations of stars by asteroids is at http://sbn.psi.edu/pds/resource/occ.html
Buie, M. W., Dunham, D. W., et al., “Size and Shape from Stellar Occultation Observations of the Double Jupiter Trojan Patroclus and Menoetius”, Astronomical Journal, Vol. 149, No. 3, Paper 113, 2015.
Dunham, D. W., et al., “Some Options for Lunar Exploration Utilizing the Earth-Moon L2 Libration Point”, Paper AAS14-465, Space Flight Mechanics Conference, Santa Fe, NM, USA, 27-30 January 2014.
Dunham, D. W., et al., “Using High-Energy Orbits to Efficiently Extend Human Exploration to Interplanetary Destinations with Reusable Spacecraft”, Paper IAA-SEC14-WA1585, International Academy of Astronautics Space Exploration Conference, Washington, DC, USA, 9 January 2014.
Timerson, B., Brooks, J., Conard, S., Dunham, D. W., Herald, D., Tolea, A., and Marchis, F., “Occultation Evidence for a Satellite of the Trojan Asteroid (911) Agamemnon”, Planetary and Space Science, Vol. 87, pp. 78-84, 2013.
Dunham, D. W., Reitsema, H. J., Lu, E., et al., “A Concept for Providing Warning of Earth Impacts by Small Asteroids”, Solar System Research, Vol. 47, pp. 315-324, 2013.
Farquhar, R.W., Jing, W., Qian, Y., Veverka, J., and Dunham, D., “A Unique Multi-Comet Mission Opportunity for China in 2018”, Paper IAC-13.A3.4.12., 64th International Astronautical Congress, Beijing, China (September 2013).
Dunham, D. W., Eismont, N. A., Boyarsky, M., Ledkov, A., Nazirov, R., Chumachenko, E., and Fedyaev, K., “Using Small Asteroids to Deflect Larger Dangerous Asteroids”, Paper GNC13-1663359, presented at the Guidance, Navigation, and Control conference, Boston, Massachusetts, August 2013.
Durech, J., Kaasalainen, M., Herald, D., Dunham, D., et al., “Combining asteroid models derived by lightcurve inversion with asteroidal occultation silhouettes”, Icarus Vol. 214, No. 2, pp. 652-670, 2011.
Cudnik, B., Dunham, D., et al., “The observation and characterization of lunar meteoroid impact phenomenoa”, Earth, Moon and Planets, Vol. 93, pp. 97-106, 2003.
"Implementation of the First Asteroid Landing", D. Dunham, R. Farquhar, J. McAdams, et al., Icarus 159, 433-438 (2002), presented at Asteroids 2001: From Piazzi to the Third Millennium Conference, Palermo, Italy (June 11-16, 2001).
"Recovery of NEAR's Mission to Eros", D. Dunham, et al., Acta Astronautica 47, 503-512 (2000).
"The Indirect Launch Mode: A New Launch Technique for Interplanetary Missions", R. Farquhar and D. Dunham, Paper IAA-L98-0901 presented at the 3rd International Academy of Astronautics Conference on Low-Cost Planetary Missions, Pasadena, CA, 1998.
"Maneuver Strategy for NEAR's Rendezvous with 433 Eros", D. Dunham, J. McAdams, L. Mosher, and C. Helfrich, Paper IAF-97-A.4.01 presented at the 48th International Astronautical Federation Congress, Turin, Italy (Oct. 6-10, 1997).
"Trajectory Design for a Lunar Mapping and Near-Earth-Asteroid Flyby Mission", D. Dunham and R. Farquhar, Advances in the Astronautical Sciences, 82, 605-624 (Univelt, Inc., San Diego, 1993) - Orbit design for the Clementine mission.
"The Size and Shape of (2) Pallas from the 1983 Occultation of 1 Vulpeculae", D. Dunham, first author, with 45 co-authors, Astron. J. 99, 1636-1662, (1990)
"A New Trajectory Concept for Exploring the Earth's Geomagnetic Tail", R. Farquhar, D. Dunham, and D. Muhonen J. Guidance and Control, 4, 192-196 (1981).
"Lunar Occultation of Saturn. IV. Astrometric Results from Observations of the Satellites", D. Dunham and J. Elliot, Icarus, 33, 311-318 (1978)
National Aeronautics and Space Administration Group Achievement Award to
the Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous Shoemaker Mission Team, July 9, 2002.
American Astronautical Society's 2003 Dirk Brouwer Award for "unique and
sustained contributions in designing innovative trajectories for
National Air and Space Museum Project Achievement Award for 2001 (NEAR
landing on Eros), I was one of ten selected to receive the award.
AIAA Certificate of Merit for promoting technical and scientific excellence
for the paper "Contour Mission Overview and Trajectory Design", presented at the AAS/AIAA Astrodynamics Conference, Sun Valley, ID, August 1997.
Outstanding Publication in the Category of Special Publications for contribution to the "Special Issue on NEAR", Journal of the Astronautical Sciences, Vol. 43, No. 4, JHU/APL, 1996
Space Achievement Award for Giacobini-Zinner comet fly-by, American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Los Angeles Section, 1985.
Group Achievement Award for ISEE-3 Geotail/Comet Mission Design Team,
National Aeronautics and Space Administration, 1984
Bruce Blair Award, Western Amateur Astronomers, 1968, for establishing the grazing occultation program.
Clifford Holmes Award, Riverside Telescope Makers Conference, 2017, for work on eclipses and occultations.
PROFESSIONAL SOCIETY MEMBERSHIP:
International Academy of Astronautics (2012-Present)
Russian Academy of Natural Science (2012-2014)
American Astronomical Society (A.A.S.; 1965-Present)
A.A.S. Division on Dynamical Astronomy (1970-Present)
A.A.S. Division for Planetary Sciences (1980-Present)
International Astronomical Union (1976-Present)
American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (1980-Present)
American Astronautical Society (2003-Present)