The Space Dynamics Lab at Utah State University is responsible for manufacturing, testing, and characterization of the WISE instrument.
John Elwell – Payload Program Manager
John Elwell is the program manager for the WISE payload. After spending his childhood taking apart old radios and TVs, he entered college only to be disappointed to find that vacuum tubes were no longer part of the curriculum. He earned B.S. and M.S. degrees in Electrical Engineering and has worked in infrared space sensor development and calibration for more than 20 years. He has participated in a variety of military and NASA programs, including the Tropospheric Emission Spectrometer (TES) and Geosynchronous Imaging Fourier Transform Spectrometer (GIFTS). In his spare time, he still enjoys working on vacuum-tube radios, a hobby that both his wife and dog consider harmless.
Mark Larsen - Payload System Engineer
Mark Larsen grew up in northern Utah hunting ducks, fishing, and vowing never to get a desk job. His goal was to work as a lineman for the power company, because then he could climb tall poles all day. After spending a year and a half as a missionary in Argentina, he earned a B.S. degree in engineering at Utah State University and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees at Brigham Young University with a focus on signal processing and data compression. Having given up his dream of climbing tall poles for work, he joined Utah State University’s Space Dynamics Laboratory, where he developed algorithms for processing flight data for the SPIRIT III sensor on-board the MSX spacecraft, and as a calibration scientist on several NASA and department of defense programs. He is currently the Payload Systems Engineer for the WISE program.
Kirk Larsen – Deputy Payload Program Manager
Kirk Larsen is the deputy program manager for the WISE Infrared sensor development. Kirk received a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Utah State University in 1985 and worked for Martin Marietta for several years. Kirk has been at Space Dynamics Laboratory since 1988 and has been involved in Infrared sensor development on many different projects ever since.
Joel Cardon - Payload Deputy Systems Engineer
Joel has been on the WISE team for nearly two years now, focusing on payload systems engineering, especially payload performance characterization activities at SDL's facilities in Logan. Joel has been a member of SDL's sensor calibration group since 2005 and previously worked for 15 years at the US Naval Research Lab in Washington, DC as an instrument scientist for spectrometers launched on several space shuttle and satellite missions. Joel led the effort to fly a spatial heterodyne spectrometer for the first time on space shuttle mission STS-112.
Wally Gibbons –Payload Electronics Lead
Wally has been at SDL for 20 years. He was involved in the MSX/SPIRIT III satellite program, SPAS III, WIRE, and various naval reconnaissance programs before joining the WISE team. Prior to working at SDL, Wally worked in the medical electronics industry for 11 years. He enjoys ham radio, restoring antique radios, building his audio equipment from scratch, and listening to music in his spare time
Roy Esplin –Payload Optical Lead
Roy W. Esplin is the lead optical engineer for the WISE payload optical subsystem. He has over 30 years of experience in the development of optical hardware for both NASA and military programs. He has been at the Space Dynamics Laboratory of the Utah State University Research Foundation since 1972, except for a six year period during which he worked at Motorola Government Electronics Group and the University of the Pacific
Rosemarie Jorgensen – Sr. Cost Analyst/Program Coordinator
Rosemarie Jorgensen received a BS in Business Administration from USU. She has worked at SDL doing Earned Value Management (EVM) for 20 years. She helped develop SDL’s EVM system and has worked on larger programs such as WIRE and WISE. The hardest part of her job is convincing team members that EVM is a valuable management tool if time is made for good planning at the start of the program; and then keeping up with the many changes that occur in a research and development environment. Outside work, she has submitted to her husband’s mid-life crisis and taken up riding a Harley. After intensely disliking the idea, she’s still not sure which was worth it, the husband or the Harley!
Jim Dyer - contamination lead
Brett Lloyd - mechanical lead
Brian Thompson - mechanical engineer
Harri Latvakoski - calibration engineer
Pedro Sevilla - computer programmer
Matt Jeppesen - electrical engineer
Drew Hansen - technician
Glenn Hatch - technician
Kent Johnson - technician
Andrew Little - technician
Ken Hamilton - quality assurance
Rick Hackler - safety
Dave McLain - designer
JeNae Gittins - contracts administrator
Joel Drake - program writer
focal planes - DRS and Teledyne Imaging Systems
optical components - L3 SSG-Tinsley and JDSU
cryostat - Lockheed Martin