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An Italian astronaut becomes the first European woman to command the space station - the Observer

An Italian astronaut becomes the first European woman to command the space station – the Observer

The European Space Agency (ESA) announced Friday that Italian astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti will be the first European woman to command the International Space Station (ERA) in 2022.

According to a statement from the European Space Agency, this is it The second mission of the ERA astronaut is to serve ESA and “her experience will lead to her becoming the first European woman to command the station”.

The European Space Agency says the role assigned to Samantha Cristoforetti – which will head to ERA in 2022 aboard the SpaceX spacecraft with American astronauts Kjell Lindgren and Bob Hines – results from a “tentative agreement” created on May 19 by the EEI’s five (European) partners. ) And US, Russian, Japanese and Canadian space agencies).

The exact launch date of the mission has yet to be determined.

Samantha Cristoforetti, 44 years old She is part of the active body of seven European Space Agency astronauts and is the only womanAfter being selected in the 2008-2009 recruitment campaign.

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Commenting on his appointment as commander of the International Space Station in 2022, the Italian astronaut, quoting the European Space Agency, said: “I hope to use my experience in space and on Earth to lead a particularly brilliant team in orbit.”

Before Samantha Cristoforetti, EEI had only four European astronauts as leaders, all of them men. Belgian Frank de Winne was the first in 2009.

The European Space Agency has a new astronaut recruitment campaign underway, intending to increase the number of women in space and has a reinforced crew for future missions to the moon or even Mars.

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Places are open to four to six permanent astronauts and 20 reserve astronauts, including a first-time astronaut with a physical disability. The nominations process ends on June 18, and the “electors” will be known in October of next year.

The International Space Station is a scientific laboratory and the “home” of astronauts orbiting the Earth, as it is located at an altitude of about 400 km.

Samantha Cristoforetti was the first person to make espresso coffee “in view” of the planet, at EEI, where it was first made between 2014 and 2015 (about six months).