ESA astronaut Frank De Winne speaks on space exploration at the UAB

Frank De Winne

Frank De Winne, head of the ESA European Astronaut Centre and former commander of the International Space Station, spoke on the perspectives of current and future ESA missions, including explorations of the moon and Mars.


Astronaut from the European Space Agency Frank De Winne offered a conference on 16 January entitled "Europeans - Once Explorers, Always Explorers" at the auditorium of the UAB Rectorat building. Of Belgian nationality, Frank De Winne was the first European commander of the International Space Station and in 2009 he participated in the six-month OasISS mission. Since 2012, he is the head of the ESA European Astronaut Centre.

The conference, which formed part of the 50th anniversary celebrations, focused on current and future space exploration programmes of the European Space Agency, both low-orbit missions and future missions to Mars and the moon such as the "Deep Space Gateway" project. He also spoke on a lunar orbit station the concept of a "Moon Village", with people from different countries, robots and created with public and private funds. De Winne, who considered Elon Musk's plans to colonise Mars "not very realistic" , also explained that the Exomars mission "to search for life under the surface of Mars", and ended his conference with a presentation of the daily tasks of an astronaut at the International Space Station.

During the morning, De Winne participated in a meeting of the Life Support in Space working group of the European Space Agency (ESA) and visited the MELISSA-Laboratory Claude Chipaux pilot plant located at the Department of Chemical, Biological and Environmental Engineering of the School of Engineering.

More information: Frank de Winne talk


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