Raphaël Liégeois selected for 2022 ESA astronaut cohort

© 2022 EPFL

© 2022 EPFL

Congratulations to Raphaël Liégeois, scientific collaborator at MIPLAB, for being selected as one of the six ESA career astronauts

Careers might take unexpected twists, but who could have suspected that an excellent career in neuroscience could lead to being an astronaut?

Raphaël Liégeois did.

Raphaël did his undergraduate studies at the University of Liège (Belgium) in biomedical engineering, including an exchange programme at the Ecole Centrale Paris and Université Paris-Sud Orsay (fundamental physics). He then returned to Liège to do a PhD in neuroscience, followed by a postdoc at the National University of Singapore, where he worked on neuroimaging markers of neurodegenerative diseases. He joined MIPLAB first as postdoc in 2018 to develop dynamic models of brain function, then as scientific collaborator, where he takes part in numerous teaching and mentoring activities.

So what drove Raphaël to joining the ESA astronaut program?

One might guess that space excitement bite him during his studies in Paris, when he took part in a parabolic flight campaign with French space agency CNES to test a physics experiment. And maybe being an active hot air balloon pilot, gas balloon pilot, and glider pilot was just the begining of his journey to space.

Noteworthingly, the 2022 cohort also comprises a Swiss physician.

Congratulations Raphaël for this achievement (being selected among 22'500 applicants), and all the best for the hard and exciting journey to space!