Humanity dreams of the stars. For most of us, space travel remains a dream. For astronauts, however, that dream is a little closer to reality.
But how do you become an astronaut? Is it worth all the effort? And what’s the future of space exploration? It’s time to put your questions to European Space Agency astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti!
The Q&A will be part of our “#Ask” series, which have included outgoing Presidents of the European Central Bank and EU Commission, Mario Draghi and Jean-Claude Juncker, and Chief Executive of the World Bank, Kristalina Georgieva.
Italy’s “Astro Samantha” learned English, German, French and Russian at an early age, studied aerospace engineering and joined the Italian Air Force. From an early age, she was clear she wanted to become an astronaut. In 2009, she was officially selected as an astronaut of the European Space Agency ESA. Five years later, she launched into space from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. Overall, she stayed for 199 days on the International Space Station (ISS), breaking the record for the female astronaut who has spent the most time in space (a record she held until 2017). She still holds the record for the longest uninterrupted spaceflight by a European astronaut. Not only that, but her crew was also the first to taste the very first espresso brewed on the ISS.
What do you want to ask astronaut Cristoforetti? Have you ever wanted to go into space yourself? Why are we all so fascinated by the vast emptiness above us? Or do you question the meaning and purpose of the European space program? Let us know your questions in the form below and we’ll put them to ESA astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti for her response!