A vertical view of the dormant Vesuvius volcano in Italy. Taken by ESA astronaut Thomas Pesquet from on board the International Space Station.
Thomas’ Proxima mission is the ninth long-duration mission for an ESA astronaut. It is named after the closest star to the Sun, continuing a tradition of naming missions with French astronauts after stars and constellations.
During Proxima, Thomas will have performed around 50 scientific experiments for ESA and France’s space agency CNES, as well as take part in many research activities for the other Station partners. The mission is part of ESA’s vision to use Earth-orbiting spacecraft as a place to live and work for the benefit of European society while using the experience to prepare for future voyages of exploration further into the Solar System.