Science & Exploration

Samantha Cristoforetti

6950 views 39 likes
ESA / Science & Exploration / Human and Robotic Exploration / Futura

This article was correct at launch but is no longer updated.

ESA astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti was born in 1977 in Milan, Italy but grew up in Male in the Italian province of Trento. She always dreamed of reaching the skies and is an avid science-fiction fan from her childhood years.

Samantha's hometown seen from space
Samantha's hometown seen from space

She put her dreams into practice by studying aerospace engineering in several universities around the world. Her thesis dealt with solid rocket propellants, lightweight structures and aerodynamics.

Travelling and learning languages was part of Samantha’s education, starting with a year spent in the USA at high school. In 2001, she graduated from the Technische Universität Munich, Germany, with a master’s degree in mechanical engineering and specialisations in aerospace propulsion and lightweight structures. As part of her studies, she spent four months at the Ecole Nationale Supérieure de l’Aéronautique et de l’Espace in Toulouse, France, working on an experimental project in aerodynamics. She wrote her master’s thesis on solid rocket propellants during a 10-month research stay at the Mendeleev University of Chemical Technologies in Moscow, Russia.

Samantha greets Italian air force
Samantha greets Italian air force

As soon as the Italian air force opened application to women, Samantha was one of the first to apply. As part of her training at the Italian Air Force Academy, she completed a bachelor’s degree in aeronautical sciences at the University of Naples Federico II, Italy, in 2005. She also completed the Euro-NATO Joint Jet Pilot training.

Her career in the force saw her log over 500 hours with many military aircraft and she is now a captain of the Italian air force.

Samantha's 200th day in space
Samantha's 200th day in space

Samantha’s technical degrees and proven skills in mastering high-tech machines coupled with her aptitude for languages and enthusiasm for travelling make her an ideal astronaut candidate. In 2009 she was one of the six chosen from 8000 European applicants to join the ESA astronaut corps.

In 2012 Samantha was assigned to the Futura mission. Travelling the world as part of her astronaut training, she had a head start as she already spoke German, French, English and Russian. Always looking to the future, Samantha is learning Chinese in her spare time.

Samantha is keen on sharing her experiences and has been an active blogger from the start of her career as an astronaut. She enjoys interacting with space enthusiasts on Twitter as @AstroSamantha

Related Articles

Samantha back on Earth
Science & Exploration

ESA astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti back on Earth

11/06/2015 34729 views 165 likes
Read
Samantha, Terry and Anton
Science & Exploration

ESA astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti returning home

08/06/2015 13905 views 79 likes
Read
Moving Leonardo
Science & Exploration

Space Station remodelling

28/05/2015 11544 views 110 likes
Read
Samantha
Science & Exploration

Samantha’s longer stay on Space Station

12/05/2015 21791 views 126 likes
Read
Dragon capture
Science & Exploration

Second Dragon, fruit flies and fresh coffee for Samantha

22/04/2015 7286 views 80 likes
Read
Mission X students
Agency

Mission X comes to a close with a call from space

25/03/2015 2463 views 24 likes
Read
Samantha working on Airway Monitoring
Science & Exploration

Testing astronauts’ lungs in Space Station airlock

09/03/2015 9612 views 82 likes
Read
Dragon approaches Station
Science & Exploration

Fresh supplies and experiments for Samantha

13/01/2015 8888 views 82 likes
Read
Soyuz TMA-15M approaches Station
Science & Exploration

ESA astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti arrives at Space Stati…

24/11/2014 23447 views 97 likes
Read
Samantha in Soyuz
Science & Exploration

Samantha set for Space Station

21/11/2014 24459 views 81 likes
Read
POP3D printer
Enabling & Support

Europe’s 3D printer set for Space Station

13/11/2014 49440 views 173 likes
Read
Samantha spacewalk training
Science & Exploration

Samantha’s mission has a name: Futura

09/12/2013 6382 views 29 likes
Read
Entraînement
Science & Exploration

ESA astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti set for Space Station …

03/07/2012 4628 views 3 likes
Read
Entraînement
Science & Exploration

Samantha Cristoforetti

273347 views 853 likes
Read
Soyuz TMA-15M, Futura mission patch, 2014
Science & Exploration

Samantha’s Futura logo

22/01/2014 7741 views 59 likes
Read

Related Links