Switzerland has new ESA astronaut

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ESA’s new class of astronauts was presented on 23 November in Paris. Switzerland’s Marco Alain Sieber is one of them.

Following a recruitment campaign for a new class of astronauts launched in spring 2021, ESA announced the list of persons selected to become astronauts and, in the frame of a feasibility project, astronauts with a physical disability. This was the first call for applications for new astronauts since 2008.

Switzerland is delighted that ESA has announced that a Swiss citizen, Marco Alain Sieber, will be one of its astronauts. A practising medical doctor in Biel, Mr Sieber has several strings to his bow: emergency medicine, pilot, skydiving instructor as well as experience abroad. After a period of training, the selected astronauts will be able to take part in flights linked to ESA programmes run in cooperation with NASA. These include the International Space Station ISS, the Lunar Gateway and ARTEMIS, to which Switzerland contributes, e.g. on the ORION module of the Space Launch System.

ESA received more than 22,000 applications in response to the recruitment campaign, of which 668 were from Swiss citizens. 5 applicants have been selected to form the new class of 2022 ESA astronauts.


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