Dr. Peters works for NASA as the Risk Manager for the Commercial Crew program which has the goal of developing an American commercial spacecraft designed to transport NASA astronauts to the International Space Station. He also served as the Deputy Chief Engineer for the Exploration Systems Mission Directorate at NASA Headquarters in Washington, DC from August 2008 to July 2009. As the Deputy Chief Engineer, Jim was charged with technical oversight of NASA’s Exploration Programs (Constellation, Commercial Crew Cargo, Lunar Precursor, Exploration Technology Development and Human Research).
Before transitioning to the Constellation Program and accepting the NASA Headquarters assignment, Dr. Peters was the Shuttle Debris Integration Chair responsible for correcting the debris problems that lead to the Columbia Accident on STS-107 and Returning the Shuttle Fleet to operational flight status. He held integration responsibilities for debris mitigation and redesign and oversaw all aspects of debris risk minimization and assessment to include operation of imagery and radar assets, on-orbit damage assessment, risk characterization, and debris reduction design modifications to the vehicle. His team was responsible for performing risk assessments on over 500 potential debris sources, identifying the highest debris risk areas and implementing corrective measures on the Orbiter, External Tank, Solid Rocket Boosters, and Launch pad designed to minimize or eliminate those debris risks.