Artist's rendering of Texas A&M physics Ph.D. candidate Jeff Chancellor's research on space radiation effects on astronaut health recently selected as a National Science Foundation Science 360 Picture of the Day. (Credit: Rebecca Blue.)


Texas A&M University physics Ph.D. candidate Jeff Chancellor '17 has been honored with the Aerospace Medical Association's 2018 Marie Marvingt Award for his research on space radiation and the associated health risks to astronauts during long-duration spaceflight.

Chancellor was presented with the award May 10 during AsMA Honors Night Ceremonies at the Hilton Anatole Hotel in Dallas as part of the AsMA 89th Annual Meeting. Established and sponsored by the French Aerospace Medical Association, it is bestowed annually to honor excellence and innovation in aerospace medicine in memory of Marie Marvingt, a pioneer French pilot and surgical nurse, who, for more than 50 years, actively and untiringly involved herself in the conception and development of air ambulance services and in the education of the general public regarding their use and benefits.

In 2015, Chancellor put his own promising 15-year private-sector career in space radiation research and risk assessment on hold to concentrate full-time on finishing his Ph.D. at Texas A&M. As a graduate student in the Department of Physics and Astronomy and a member of Texas A&M physicist Helmut Katzgraber's research group, Chancellor's innovative work has helped to expand our understanding of the space radiation environment and ability to translate radiation risks to astronaut health. In addition to providing a better overall picture where risk assessment is concerned, his research presents an opportunity to prevent or mitigate such threats to future astronaut crews, including an International Space Station one that will feature his wife, Serena Auñón-Chancellor, set to launch on June 6.

Chancellor served as a flight mechanic in the U.S. Coast Guard from 1989 to 1996, then two years as an operations and quality assurance manager at Morton's prior to enrolling at the University of Houston in 1999. After receiving both bachelor's (2003) and master's degrees in physics (2005), he took a position as senior research engineer at Lockheed Martin Space Operations, NASA Johnson Space Center, Space Radiation Analysis Group (SRAG). As part of SRAG, Chancellor served as a flight controller on the radiation console in Mission Control and as the radiation lead on the Mission Management team for Space Shuttle missions STS-118, STS-120, STS-122, and STS-125. In 2010, he became radiation effects program manager at the National Space Biomedical Research Institute until 2014 and held an academic appointment at the Center for Space Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine. In 2012, Chancellor also served as radiation health officer and space weather advisor to the Red Bull Stratos Medical Team. Finally, he was radiation team lead scientist for the Inspiration Mars Mission from 2013 to 2015.

Chancellor, whose previous honors include the NASA Peer Award and the Hubble 25th Anniversary Commendation, has authored or co-authored 10 papers, one book chapter and two commissioned special reports while presenting more than 35 invited talks at conferences, seminars, colloquia and special lectures. In addition to the AsMA, he is a member of the Institute of Physics, the Center for Space Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine and the American Physical Society.

To learn more about Chancellor and his research, visit https://www.chancellor.space/ or see past feature articles from the Texas A&M College of Science and the Texas Advanced Computing Center.

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About the Aerospace Medical Association: The Aerospace Medical Association (AsMA) is the largest, most-representative professional organization in the fields of aerospace medicine and human performance. As a scientific forum, AsMA provides a setting for many different disciplines to come together and share their expertise for the benefit of all persons involved in air and space travel, along with its expertise to a multitude of federal and international agencies on a broad range of issues, including aviation and space medical standards, the aging pilot and physiological stresses of flight. AsMA's membership includes aerospace medicine specialists, physiologists, psychologists, human performance specialists, flight nurses and researchers in this field. Most are with industry, civil aviation regulatory agencies, departments of defense and military services, the airlines, space programs and universities. Approximately 30 percent of the membership originates from outside the United States. Through the efforts of the AsMA members, safety in flight and man's overall adaptation to adverse environments have been more nearly achieved. For further information, please visit www.asma.org.

About Research at Texas A&M University: As one of the world's leading research institutions, Texas A&M is at the forefront in making significant contributions to scholarship and discovery, including that of science and technology. Research conducted at Texas A&M represented annual expenditures of more than $905.4 million in fiscal year 2017. Texas A&M ranked in the top 20 of the National Science Foundation's Higher Education Research and Development survey (2016), based on expenditures of more than $892.7 million in fiscal year 2016. Texas A&M's research creates new knowledge that provides basic, fundamental and applied contributions resulting, in many cases, in economic benefits to the state, nation and world. To learn more, visit http://research.tamu.edu/.


Contact: Shana K. Hutchins, (979) 862-1237 or shutchins@science.tamu.edu or Jeff Chancellor, jeff@chancellor.space or jchancellor@tamu.edu

Hutchins Shana

  • Jeff Chancellor '17

    (Credit: Jeff Chancellor '17.)

  • Chancellor (center), receiving his Marvingt Award and congratulations from Dr. Valerie Martindale (left), president of the Aerospace Medical Association, and Dr. Henri Marotte (right), representing the French Society of Aerospace Medicine as the award's sponsor. (Credit: Aerospace Medical Association.)

  • Chancellor, presenting his research last summer at Texas A&M's two-day Research Computing Week symposium.

© Texas A&M University. To request use of any of our photographs for educational use or to view additional options from our archive, please contact the College of Science Communications Office.

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