Brushing teeth in space - podcast

Part
01
of two
Part
01

Brushing Teeth in Space, Pt. 1

People who are qualified to discuss oral hygiene in space include astronauts, who have direct experience in performing oral hygiene in space, and astronomy and astrophysics academics, who have knowledge of the relevant physics. Due to their popularity, astronauts' personal contact information is not publicly available; however, NASA provides centralized contact information for astronauts and in some cases, individualized astronauts have contact forms on their websites. This contact information, qualifications, and links to recorded videos for seven astronauts and three academics have been entered into the attached spreadsheet in rows 3-13. In most cases, interviews less than two years old were found, but in two cases, Debra Elmegreen and George Zamka, only older interviews were available and these have been included. A brief overview of the ten experts is below.

ASTRONAUTS

1. Joseph M. Acaba: Acaba was on two space missions for NASA, encompassing 138 days in space. He is also a science educator.

2. Leroy Chiao: Chiao has been on four space missions, with a total of 229 days in space. He is also a space educator and public speaker.

3. George Zamka: Zamka has been on two space missions, one for 15 days and the other for 13 days. He is currently the chairman of the board of the National Association of Spaceports.

4. Christopher Ferguson: Ferguson has completed three space missions, one for 11 days, one for 15 days, and one for 12 days. He is currently the Director of Crew and Mission Operations for the commercial space flight program at Boeing.

5. Thomas Jones: Jones spent 53 days in space over four NASA missions. He is also a public speaker and has written four books.

6. Janet Kavandi: Kavandi has been on three space missions, lasting 9, 11, and 12 days. She is currently the Director of NASA'a John Glenn Research Center.

7. Winston Scott: Scott has spent 24 days in space over two missions. He was the Executive Director of the Florida Space Authority, and is currently a public speaker and the Dean of the College of Aeronautics at Florida Institute of Technology.

ACADEMICS

1. Debra M. Elmegreen: Elmgreene is the Vice President of the Executive Committee of the International Astronomical Union, and a professor of physics and astronomy at Vassar College. She was formerly the President of the American Astronomical Society.

2. Christine Jones: Jones is currently the President of the American Astronomical Society and a lecturer at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. She has received the Nininger Meteorite Award, the NASA Group Achievement Award (five times), and the NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal.

3. Michael Strauss: Strauss is a professor and Associate Chair of Princeton’s Department of Astrophysical Sciences, and was formerly the Vice President of the American Astronomical Society. He has published over 300 papers, and has won awards including the American Astronomical Society's Newton Lacy Pierce Prize.

CONCLUSION

These seven astronauts and three highly accomplished academics in the fields of astronomy and astrophysics are qualified to speak about oral hygiene in space because of either direct experience in space or extensive academic knowledge in astrophysics. Detailed information can be found in the attached spreadsheet.
Part
02
of two
Part
02

Brushing Teeth in Space, Pt. 2

I have identified another nine individuals who are fit to discuss oral hygiene in space for a podcast. These include the American astronauts who have spent the longest time in space and taken the greatest number of trips into space, who accordingly have a wealth of personal experience of taking care of their teeth in space. I have also included two dentists, one who worked at the NASA dental clinic and one who cares for the teeth of NASA’s astronaut corp; both would be familiar with the oral hygiene issues that might be encountered by those spending time in space. Lastly I have included astrophysicists and astronomers focusing on those with a connection to NASA, excluding NASA Newsroom, or those who are known as science popularizers, in the vein of Neil deGrasse Tyson, who are likely to be interested in taking part in a podcast interview.

I was able to find contact details in the form of phone numbers and email addresses, or online contact forms and Twitter handles where phone or email was not available. This information has been added to the spreadsheet, along with the requested details of their qualifications and video interviews with them where readily available. The list of suitable individuals is outlined briefly below.

ASTRONAUTS

Peggy Whitson: Whitson holds the record for the American who has logged the most time in space.

Franklin Chang-Diaz and Jerry Ross: Chang-Diaz and Ross are joint record holders for the greatest number of spaceflights.

DENTISTS

Michael Hodapp: Hodapp worked for the NASA dental practice for a decade, and has a special interest in aerospace dentistry.

John Hatcher: Hatcher has treated the NASA astronaut corp since 1989.

ASTROPHYSICISTS AND ASTRONOMERS

Paul Hertz: Hertz is Director of Astrophysics at NASA where he is responsible for research programs and missions.

Madhulika Guhathakurta: Guhathakurta is the principal scientist for the NASA Living with a Star Program.

Alex Filippenko and Gibor Basri: Both Filippenko and Basri have been awarded the Carl Sagan Prize for Science Popularization, in 2004 and 2016 respectively. They are both professors at UC Berkeley in the astronomy department.

CONCLUSION

The above individuals are qualified to discuss oral hygiene in space because of personal experience in space, experience of treating the teeth of astronauts, or deep knowledge in astrophysics which they actively seek to share with the public. The requested details have been entered into the spreadsheet.
Sources
Sources

From Part 02