Andrew C. Schuerger
Andrew Schuerger received his BS (1979) and MS (1981) degrees from the University of Arizona and his Ph.D. (1991) from the University of Florida studying microbiology and plant pathology. Dr. Schuerger worked for 16 years at The Land (a hydroponic research and education facility) at Epcot Center, FL developing disease management programs for diseases of vegetable and agronomic crops. His research interests have closely paralleled NASA’s Advanced Life Support (ALS) and Astrobiology programs. In 1997 Dr. Schuerger joined the Dynamac Corporation to pursue research on the remote sensing of plant stress using spectral reflectance and fluorescence imaging technologies. In 2000, he received two NASA research (NRA) grants to study (i) the survival, growth, and replication of microorganisms under simulated Martian conditions, and (ii) the growth of plants in low pressure environments for developing concepts in Mars bioregenerative life support systems. During the summer field seasons of 1999 through 2001, Dr. Schuerger participated on explorations of the Haughton Impact Crater on Devon Island in the high Canadian Arctic. In 2000 and 2001, he led a research program studying the dispersal of human-associated microorganisms. The later study was conducted as a simulation of what might be expected on Mars for the dispersal of microbial contaminants around a human basecamp.