Samantha Cristoforetti, Italian astronaut

Samantha Cristoforetti, Italian astronaut

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Credit: NASA/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

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Caption: Samantha Cristoforetti, Italian European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut, in an Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU) spacesuit. Cristoforetti (born 1977) graduated with a master's degree in mechanical engineering in 2001 and joined the Italian Air Force Academy, where she trained as a fighter pilot. She was selected to join ESA in 2009 and, on successfully completing astronaut basic training in November 2010, became the first Italian female astronaut. She flew to the ISS on 23 November 2014 for a long-duration mission, and returned safely on 11 June 2015.

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