European Space Agency astronaut
Born 18 March 1957 in Stockholm, Sweden. Married to the former Elisabeth Walldie. They have three children. Enjoys sports, sailing, skiing, frisbee, games and reading.
Graduated from Bromma Gymnasium, Stockholm in 1975 and received a Master of Science in engineering physics from the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH), Stockholm, in 1981. He received a Doctorate in experimental particle physics in 1987 and became a Docent in particle physics in 1991 at the University of Stockholm. He was appointed Affiliated Professor at KTH in 2006.
Honorary Doctorate from Umeå University, Sweden (1999). Honorary Doctorate from the University of Nova Gorica, Slovenia (2007). NASA Space Flight Medal (2007 and 2009). H.M. The King’s Medal (Stockholm, 2007).
As a graduate student, Fuglesang worked at the European Research Centre on Particle Physics (CERN) in Geneva on the UA5 experiment, which studied proton-antiproton collisions. In 1988, he became a Fellow of CERN, where he worked on the CPLEAR experiment studying the subtle CP-violation of Kaon-particles. After a year he became a Senior Fellow and head of the particle identification subdetector. In November 1990, Fuglesang obtained a position at the Manne Siegbahn Institute of Physics, Stockholm, but remained stationed at CERN for another year working towards the new Large Hadron Collider (LHC) project. Since 1980, (when stationed in Sweden) Fuglesang taught mathematics at the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH).
In May 1992, Fuglesang was selected to join the European Astronaut Corps based at the European Astronaut Centre (EAC) in Cologne, Germany.
In 1992, he followed the introductory training programme at EAC and a four-week training programme at the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Centre(GCTC) in Star City, Russia, with a view to future ESA-Russian collaboration on the Mir space station. In July 1993, he completed basic training at EAC.
In May 1993, Fuglesang and fellow ESA astronaut Thomas Reiter were selected for the Euromir 95 mission and commenced training at GCTC in preparation for their flight engineer tasks, extravehicular activities (spacewalks) and operation of the Soyuz spacecraft. In March 1995, he was selected as member of Crew 2 for the Euromir 95 mission, joining Gennadi Manakov and Pavel Vinogradov. During the mission, which lasted from 3 September to 29 February 1996, Fuglesang was the prime Crew Interface Coordinator (CIC) working at the Russian Mission Control Centre (TsUP) in Kaliningrad.
Between March and June 1996, he underwent specialised training on Soyuz operations for undocking, atmospheric reentry and landing.
In August 1996, Fuglesang entered the Mission Specialist Class at NASA's Johnson Space Center (JSC), Houston. He qualified for flight assignment as a Mission Specialist in April 1998.
From May to October 1998, he resumed training at GCTC on Soyuz-TM spacecraft operations for undocking, atmospheric reentry and landing. He was awarded the Russian 'Soyuz Return Commander' certificate, which qualifies him to command a three-person Soyuz capsule on its return from space.
In October 1998, he returned to JSC and was assigned to technical duties in the Astronaut Office. He worked with Russian Transfer Vehicles (i.e. Soyuz and Progress) and then as Crew Support Astronaut for the Expedition Corps of the second International Space Station increment crew. He later worked with upcoming payloads for ISS and with extravehicular activities.
Fuglesang continued with some scientific work and was involved with the SilEye experiment which investigated light flashes in astronauts’ eyes on Mir between 1995 and 1999. This work is continuing on ISS with the Alteino detector and the ALTEA facility. He also initiated the DESIRE Project that simulated and estimated the radiation environment inside ISS.
In February 2002, he was assigned as a Mission Specialist to the STS-116 Space Shuttle mission to the International Space Station.
In July 2008, Fuglesang was assigned as Mission Specialist on the STS-128 Space Shuttle mission to the International Space Station.
From 9 to 22 December 2006, Christer Fuglesang flew as Mission Specialist on Space Shuttle Discovery for flight STS-116 to the International Space Station. He became the first Swedish astronaut to fly in space. During his mission, named Celsius, Fuglesang participated in three spacewalks, or extravehicular activities (EVAs). The tasks were to attach new hardware to the ISS and to reconfigure the Station's electrical power system. The third EVA was unscheduled with the aim to free the Station's P6 solar array which had become jammed during retraction. His total EVA time during the STS-116 mission was 18 hours 14 minutes.
Fuglesang participated in his second spaceflight from 29 August to 12 September 2009 as Mission Specialist on Space Shuttle Discovery for flight STS-128 to the International Space Station. During his mission, named Alissé, Fuglesang undertook two spacewalks. His tasks included the installation of a new ammonia tank assembly and preparation work for the installation of the European-built Node-3 module. His total EVA time during the STS-128 mission was 13 hours and 40 minutes, bringing his cumulative EVA time to date to 31 hours and 54 minutes. Fuglesang was also responsible for overseeing cargo transfers from the Leonardo Multi-Purpose Logistics Module (MPLM) that was transported in Discovery's payload bay. He also undertook experiment, educational and public relations activities as part of the Alissé Mission.
In May 2010, Fuglesang took over as Head of Science and Application Division within the Directorate of Human Spaceflight and Operations at ESTEC, Netherlands.
Last update: 15 January 2013