Dr Chrispy (AKA Dr. Chris Boshuizen) is an award-winning aeronautical engineer, music producer, and songwriter who has spent the last 15 years tragically torn between two loves: Music and Space Exploration. Having worked at NASA for almost five years inventing new kinds of spacecraft, Chris went on to co-found the company Planet Labs, which launched and monitors over 200 spacecraft that create a daily map of the global environment. In 2021 he flew to space longside William Shatner on Blue Origin’s NS-18 mission!
During all this, Chris spent nearly every spare moment writing music on the one instrument he always had with him: his laptop. Much of his music was written at airports or on planes, and over this 15-year period he has amassed an impressive catalog of material with over 300 tracks. Wanting to get some of his music out to the world, Chris decided to pursue his art full-time, adopting the nickname “Chrispy” that was given to him by his NASA co-workers. Unlike other notable “doctors” in the music industry, Dr Chrispy has a PhD in Physics, and in 2014 he won the Advance Global Australian Award for being the Greatest Australian Not Living in Australia.
Dr Chrispy runs his home studio in San Francisco where he is finishing two albums, the first set for release in 2018. His current project, VHS, is a collection of instrumental tracks Chris began writing in 2003 while traveling for work as an aerospace engineer. Each track was written in a different location, titled with the name of a city, airport code, or local attraction, and captures the vibe of each place and moment in time. VHS is an auditory travel diary, inviting you along to hear and experience the evolution from Dr. Chris Boshuizen, Space Scientist, to Dr Chrispy the Artist.
Always fascinated by space, when he was young Chris considered it a special treat when he was allowed to stay up watching Carl Sagan’s “Cosmos” on TV. He figured that if space was something you could stay up past your bedtime for, it must be special. After completing his PhD in Physics at the University of Sydney he found a position at NASA Ames Research Center in Northern California, one of NASA’s 10 centers around the US. There Chris worked on several fascinating projects, including a lunar lander, an electric airplane, and he also co-invented the world’s smallest satellite called PhoneSat.
With the success of PhoneSat, Chris and his friends were emboldened to try something ambitious, so they left NASA to start Planet Labs. Planet’s goal is to map the entire world every day, allowing the world’s environment and economy to be monitored, and empowering people to take proactive stewardship of the world we live in. Today Planet Labs has launched over 200 satellites that were designed under Chris’s leadership.
Chris’s current day job is as an Operating Partner at the Venture Capital fund Data Collective VC, where he assesses and supports new space and other high-tech start-up companies. Chris hopes to one day travel even further beyond the Earth’s atmosphere, and feels he still has the passion to start another space company one day. You can catch more of Chris’s space and technology thoughts on his personal twitter account.