Born 18 December 1956 in Mönchengladbach, Germany. He is married and has three children. He enjoys reading and spending time with his family, and performs with an amateur theatre group. He also plays soccer and holds a black belt in karate.
Received a Bachelor of Science degree in Physics from the University of Cologne in 1977 and a Master of Science degree in Experimental Physics in 1983. He graduated in 1986 with a PhD in Physics and a minor degree in human physiology.
Member of the Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft (German Physics Society) and the Association of Space Explorers. He is a Full Member of the International Academy of Astronautics.
Reinhold Ewald received the Russian “Order of Friendship” in 1992 and the Russian “Medal for Personal Courage” in 1997, awarded by President Yeltsin of the Russian Federation. In 2011 he received the Russian medal for Achievements in Spaceflight. He was awarded the German Federal Cross of Merit (First Class) in 1997.
From 1983 to 1987 Reinhold Ewald was a research scientist with the University of Cologne on a Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (German academic research federation) research project to assemble and exploit a three-metre radiotelescope installed at the Gornergrat Observatory at an altitude of 3100 metres in the High Alps, near Zermatt, Switzerland. His research topics were the structure and dynamics of interstellar molecular clouds, which are thought to be the birthplace of new stars.
In 1987 Ewald joined DLR (German Aerospace Centre). He managed several projects in extraterrestrial science, including an airborne stratospheric observatory called SOFIA, and various experiments launched on sounding rockets from ESRANGE/Sweden. He then became the coordinator for spaceflight in DLR’s planning department.
In 1990 he joined the German national astronaut team and took up training for the German-Russian MIR’92 mission at the Cosmonaut Training Centre (TsPK) in Star City, Russia. As the back-up astronaut for the flight (17-25 March 1992), he served as Crew Interface Coordinator at the Russian mission control centre (TsUP) in Korolev, providing communications between the crew in orbit and the project management and scientists on the ground.
After the mission, he returned to Germany as the Deputy Head of DLR’s Astronaut Office and supported the D-2 Spacelab mission on board the US Space Shuttle (STS-55, April-May 1993).
In 1993 Ewald was appointed Assistant to the Director of DLR’s Space Programme. In this capacity he was responsible for extraterrestrial, spaceflight and microgravity programmes.
In 1995 he returned to Star City, Russia, to train for the second German-Russian mission MIR’97.
From 1998 to 2002 Reinhold Ewald has also been lecturing part-time on spaceflight operations at the Technical University of Munich. He has held lectures at the International Space University ISU, Strasbourg.
In February 1999 he joined ESA’s European Astronaut Corps at the European Astronaut Centre EAC in Cologne, Germany.
Reinhold Ewald has been the Crew Operations Manager for the two Soyuz Taxi missions with ESA astronauts to the ISS in 2002. As ESA’s Operations Manager from a duty station in ESTEC, Noordwijk/The Netherlands, he then directed the two nationally sponsored Soyuz missions in 2003 and 2004.
From 2004 he was responsible for the development of European and international operations interface procedures. He was also responsible for the qualification and build-up of industry teams that delivered the European Columbus module to the International Space Station as well as its operations.
In 2005 he was appointed Head of the ISS Mission Integration and Operations Division in the ESA Directorate of Operations and Infrastructure with a permanent duty station in Munich. In this function, from July to December 2006, as ESA’s Operations Manager he supervised preparation and flight operations in the Munich control centre for the first long-duration mission of an ESA astronaut on the International Space Station. Called "Astrolab" it was a precursor to Columbus operations.
Reinhold led the ESA operations managers team during STS 122/1E that delivered the European laboratory module Columbus to the Station in February 2008. In this function Reinhold reported to ESA’s ISS Programme Manager.
When Columbus operations began in 2008 until March 2011 Reinhold was ESA’s lead person at the Columbus Control Centre and interacted with the Industrial Operations Team and their representatives in Mission Integration, Executive Planning, and Mission Operations services to assure adherence of operations to ESA’s Space Station programme. As head of ESA’s ISS Mission Integration and Operations Division he oversaw day-to-day Columbus operations handled by the group’s Mission Directors.
Reinhold lectures at the Technical University of Aachen and regularly teaches at the International Space Universityin Strasbourg. He has chaired sessions of the Space Science Programme team projects at the International Space University. As of February 2012 he became a member of university’s Adjunct Faculty.
MIR ’97 was the second German-Russian mission on board MIR (10 February to 2 March 1997). Ewald flew as a research cosmonaut on the Russian Soyuz TM 25 vehicle and spent 18 days on board the Mir Space Station. He performed experiments in biomedical and material sciences and carried out operational tests in preparation for the International Space Station. He returned on Soyuz TM 24.
Reinhold Ewald is currently Advisor to ESA’s Head of Director General’s Cabinet working at the European Astroanut Centre and at ESA’s headquarter’s in Paris
Last update: 22 June 2012