Dr. Thomas Reiter

Former Astronaut and ESA-Director for Human Spaceflight and Operations


Thomas Reiter holds a degree in aerospace engineering and an honorary doctorate from the University of the German Armed Forces in Munich. After completing his training as a jet pilot, he was stationed with the 43rd Fighter-Bomber Wing in Oldenburg. In 1992, Reiter was selected for ESA's European Astronaut Corps, stationed at the European Astronaut Centre (EAC) in Cologne. In March 1995, he was assigned as flight engineer for the "Euromir 95" mission. During his second mission, "Astrolab", from July to December 2006, he took on tasks as flight engineer for the International Space Station and conducted 19 experiments in space on behalf of several European institutions and research centres. Thomas Reiter held the European record of 350 days in space for about 12 years. After his active astronaut career, Thomas Reiter was appointed to the Executive Board of the German Aerospace Center (DLR) on 8 August 2007, responsible for space research and technology. On 1 April 2011, he was appointed Director of ESA's Directorate for Human Spaceflight and Operations, responsible for managing Europe's contribution to the ISS, the operation of ESA's satellite missions and the ground segment. Until 2021, he was ESA Interagency Coordinator at the European Space Agency and Advisor to the Director General.

Courses - English