Taylor Wang

BS 1967, MS 1968, PhD 1971

He showed us that the sky's no limit in the pursuit of knowledge.

The space shuttle Challenger’s Spacelab 3 mission in May 1985, like most of mankind’s journeys to the heavens, made history. Its crew included the first Chinese-American astronaut, payload specialist Dr. Taylor Wang. Wang logged more than 2.9 million miles in 110 Earth orbits and over 168 hours in space. The scientist, who was born on mainland China and became a U.S. citizen in 1975, has been just as stellar in his planet-bound career, fueled by his three UCLA degrees. The star physicist/spaceman has written 200 articles and holds about 30 U.S. patents in various areas, including acoustics, containerless science, charged drop dynamics, and other hard science subjects. He has served as a senior scientist at the California Institute of Technology’s famous Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and a principal investigator on several high-profile NASA experiments. He is Centennial Professor of Mechanical Engineering, Emeritus and Centennial Professor of Materials Science and Engineering, Emeritus, at Vanderbilt University.

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Taylor Wang

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