Marc Ó Gríofa
Marc with the Irish flag on a dive
2021

Marc Ó Gríofa

Biomedical Engineer/Physician

Breaking new ground: ireland’s first aquanaut

meet marc

Dr. Gríofa is the Medical Director for the Las Vegas Recuperative Care Center and ISO-Q Facility overseeing homeless during the COVID healthcare pandemic, while developing biomedical technology solutions for remote environments. He has designed the first Irish experiment that flew onboard the ISS and has spent four years at Kennedy Space Center as a physician and engineer working on the Space Shuttle. He is Ireland’s first aquanaut (NEEMO 21), a NOAA DMO, rescue diver and senior researcher/engineer for the NASA NEEMO mission onboard the Aquarius undersea habitat, and is the Dive-Medicine Faculty Lead for World Extreme Medicine.

Breaking new ground: ireland’s first aquanaut
Nominated by: Shawna Pandaya FI'19
Class of 2021 Location Ireland

I have sought to be involved in spaceflight and exploration since I can remember. Like many of my exploration-bound brethren, I have fought hard against odds to seek out new adventures and ensure that my love for science and passion for exploration would somehow meld into opportunities to truly break new ground. I have been incredibly lucky to be able to pursue historic exploration-class missions like NEEMO onboard Aquarius and to conduct medical research during microgravity in preparation for spaceflight.

My exploration journey as a diver, scientist, and expedition physician has led me to some of the most extreme environments around the world. I have pursued this ethos for my entire life in an effort to be counted amongst this generation’s true explorers and proudly represent the storied history that has come before me.

“I have fought hard against odds to seek out new adventures and ensure that my love for science and passion for exploration would somehow meld into opportunities to truly break new ground.”

- Marc Ó Gríofa

I currently oversee healthcare for the homeless population of Las Vegas. Based on experience with Africa’s Ebola pandemic, I am helping to develop medical protocols and technologies for the current COVID-19 healthcare crisis. As a tactical and operational physician, I have been training, supporting, and conducting research in combat medicine for 10+ years, prolonging field care.

I am passionate about education and am an award-winning national STEM education presenter on The Hab Lessons series for the Quark Academy. Plato said, “If we are to have any hope for the future, those who have lanterns must pass them on to others.” It is my hope to pass my passion and excitement for exploration on to future generations of explorers.

never stop exploring

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