DLR astronaut Reinhold Ewald (DE) flew to the Mir space station on Soyuz TM-25, in February 1997, with cosmonauts Vasili Tsibliyev and Alexander Lazutkin. He spent 18 days in space, performing experiments in biomedical and material sciences, and carried out operational tests in preparation for the International Space Station.
In February 1999, he joined ESA's European Astronaut Corps at the European Astronaut Centre (EAC) in Cologne, Germany.
This patch was designed by Novosti Kosmonavtiki to cover not only Soyuz TM-25 but the entire Mir EO-23 mission (hence the '23'), which would also include US astronaut Jerry Linenger. This patch was designed by Oleg Shitikov. It had an oval form and a green background. Distribution of the patch was delayed and the patch was not worn on spacesuits. The Mir-97 logo was adopted as the official mission patch and worn on the flight Sokols during launch and landing.