Solar System Exploration Division

Randy A Kimble


Randy A Kimble's Contact Card & Information.
Org Code: 667
Mail Code 667
Greenbelt, MD 20771
Employer: EMERITUS

Missions & Projects

Brief Bio

After receiving my Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley, I spent some years on the research staff of the Department of Physics and Astronomy at The Johns Hopkins University, where I was Deputy Project Scientist for the Hopkins Ultraviolet Telescope during its development and flight on the Astro-1 space shuttle mission.

I joined NASA Goddard in 1990 and served as Instrument Scientist and Co-Investigator for the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) through its development and successful installation on HST in 1997 and its continuing scientific operations. I was also been a Co-Investigator on the HST/Advanced Camera for Surveys.

From 2002 to 2009 I served as Project Scientist for the Hubble Space Telescope Development Project. Among my duties in that position was serving as Instrument Scientist for the Wide Field Camera 3, a powerful wideband imager that was installed during HST Servicing Mission 4 and which has been carrying out a highly successful observing program since.

In October 2009, I joined the James Webb Space Telescope program as Integration and Test Project Scientist, participating in the remarkable cryo-vacuum test programs that prepared the payload for flight. With the approach of launch, my position was modified to be Integration, Test, and Commissioning Project Scientist. Now that Webb has launched and commissioning is complete (!), rendering all of those former titles obsolete, I briefly became the Webb Deputy Senior Project Scientist/Technical,.until my retirement in January 2023.

I then became Emeritus, where I provide low-duty-cycle legacy support to JWST and HST (reviews, Anomaly Review Boards and such).


B.S. Physics, Massachusetts institute of Technology, 1974
M.A. Physics, University of California, Berkeley, 1976
Ph.D. Physics, University of California, Berkeley, 1983 (thesis: "Satellite Observations of the Extreme Ultraviolet and Far Ultraviolet Radiation Fields")

Professional Societies

American Astronomical Society

1977 - Present

International Astronomical Union

1988 - Present


Robert H. Goddard Award of Merit, 2023 (career award)

NASA Distinguished Service Medal, 2023 (career award)

Robert H. Goddard Exceptional Achievement Award for Leadership, 2018 ( for JWST testing)

NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal, 2012 (for WFC3)

Robert H. Goddard Exceptional Achievement Award for Science; 2010 (for WFC3)

NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal, 1998 (for STIS)

Inducted into Space Technology Hall of Fame,1997 (for STIS CCD Spinoff)

Selected Publications


2023. "The Science Performance of JWST as Characterized in Commissioning." Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific 135 (1046): 048001 [10.1088/1538-3873/acb293] [Journal Article/Letter]