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Samantha Cristoforetti: about the collection
Here I tell the professional story of astronaut +Samantha Cristoforetti through news, personal accounts and recollections, photos, anecdotes, and more. Of Italian nationality, in 2009 she joined the European Space Agency and in 2014 became the first female Italian astronaut to fly into space.

My story
I’m a friend of Samantha and had the privilege of following her professional journey since before she became an astronaut. I translated into Italian the training and mission #SamLogbook of her Futura space flight.


Photo credit: ESA/NASA. Original image: https://www.flickr.com/photos/astrosamantha/16440897142/
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Samantha Cristoforetti suspends posting to Facebook
In the wake of Facebook’s Cambridge Analytics scandal +Samantha Cristoforetti announced to her official Facebook page, which she manages herself, she’s discontinuing updating it over data misuse concerns:

https://www.facebook.com/ESASamanthaCristoforetti/posts/814857668719673

It’s not the first time Samantha has issues with Facebook. In 2009, shortly after being selected as an ESA astronaut, an impersonator created a fake profile of Samantha. Although the impersonator was likely just a clueless fan, it took Facebook months of flagging and reports to remove the fake profile.
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10 years since ESA’s 2008 astronaut selection campaign
Ten years ago yesterday, on April 10, 2008, ESA announced the recruitment campaign for a new class of astronauts. The 6 new selected candidates, including +Samantha Cristoforetti, were announced the following year on May 20, 2009. The website shown in the screenshot:

http://www.esa.int/Our_Activities/Human_Spaceflight/European_Astronaut_Selection/ESA_astronaut_recruitment_now_open

is the application form, published on May 19, 2008, interested candidates had to fill. The form no longer works but the accompanying information is still there and gives an idea of the requirements for applying.

See also https://twitter.com/ESA_History/status/983602909978886144
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A planet trail for Samantha Cristoforetti
The town of Malé, in Italy, built a trekking trail to celebrate astronaut +Samantha Cristoforetti who grew up there.

The trail features a model of the distances in the Solar System where each stop, placed at a landmark, marks the distance of a planet to scale. Signs at the stops provide basic facts on the planets.

My friend +anna maria lombardi took this photo of the trail’s introductory sign.

Here’s an article in Italian about the trail, see the English translation via Google Translate:

https://translate.google.com/translate?sl=it&tl=en&js=y&prev=_t&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.giornaletrentino.it%2Fcronaca%2Ftrento%2Fun-sentiero-dei-pianeti-per-onorare-astrosamantha-1.812617&edit-text=&act=url

To learn more about Malé see:

The places of Samantha Cristoforetti’s youth
https://plus.google.com/+PaoloAmoroso/posts/R4anx2Upke2
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Nominating Samantha Cristoforetti as a great European
The European Union is soliciting nominations of Europeans who represents European values, which can be posted by March 11, 2018 with the #EUNarrative to Twitter or Facebook as explained here:

Wanted: European Personalities
https://europa.eu/youth/eu/news/161/53772_en
https://twitter.com/EU_ScienceHub/status/970932094401699841?s=19

Today, International Women's Day 2018, I nominated ESA astronaut +Samantha Cristoforetti by tweeting this with the #EUNarrative hashtag:

https://twitter.com/amoroso/status/971716414406045696

She’s an inspiration to me and many other Europeans. The photo I’m attaching is fitting as it shows Samantha on the International Space Station welcoming Estonia as a new European Space Agency Member State.

I encourage +Ciro Villa to celebrate a woman who inspires him. #SheInspiresMe #InternationalWomensDay

Photo credit: ESA/NASA. Original image https://www.flickr.com/photos/astrosamantha/16422639926/
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Samantha Cristoforetti on cooperation in space
This article summarizes some of the key themes of the "The Way to the Stars - from Moon to Mars" conference that took place in Rome, Italy, in January, 2018. It also features a short interview with +Samantha Cristoforetti on the themes discussed at the event such as cooperation in space and going to Mars.
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Samantha Cristoforetti’s first public astronaut event
Eico @travelholic took this photo of +Samantha Cristoforetti at her very first public event as an astronaut in 2009.

ESA announced Samantha’s selection on May 20, 2009 and she reported to the European Astronaut Centre as an Astronaut Candidate in early September. On september 20, along with her fellow astronaut colleagues, she took part to the German Aerospace Day at the DLR facilities in Cologne, Germany. On that occasion Samantha wore for the first time the blue astronaut suit.

Here’s Eico’s tweet where he shared the photo:

https://twitter.com/travelholic/status/4131670592
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Equipment troubleshooting training for ESA astronauts
In December, 2017, ESA astronauts +Samantha Cristoforetti and Matthias Maurer went through a training program to teach them troubleshooting and repair skills for mechanical, electronic, and pneumatic equipment. A few years ago Samantha did similar training at NASA:

Maintenance Skills
https://www.flickr.com/photos/astrosamantha/albums/72157645855530706

Although this ESA training is focused on the tools available on the ISS and the tasks typically carried there, it has the broader goal of giving astronauts the skills useful in future outer space missions in cases where ground support may not be available.

See also:

http://www.esa.int/spaceinvideos/Videos/2018/01/New_training_for_ESA_astronauts
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Samantha Cristoforetti at the 1st European Education Summit
The 1st European Education Summit took place in Brussels, Belgium, on January 25, 2018. As part of the opening statements +Samantha Cristoforetti did a talk on how education served her well in becoming an astronaut.

Watch Samantha’s talk from 09:22 in the video.
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Samantha Cristoforetti awarded Premio Cavour
+Samantha Cristoforetti was awarded Premio Cavour (Cavour prize), a recognition that goes to illustrious Italians. Camillo Benso, count of Cavour, was a 19th century Italian statesman who greatly contributed to the country’s unification.

The ceremony took place on January 16, 2018 at Santena near Torino, Italy, where Cavour is buried. Some details are in this article in Italian:

16 GENNAIO 2018 CONSEGNATO IL PREMIO CAVOUR A SAMANTHA CRISTOFORETTI
http://www.camillocavour.com/stories/News/277_a_samantha_cristoforetti_il_premio_cavour_2017/
English translation via Google Translate
https://translate.google.com/translate?sl=it&tl=en&js=y&prev=_t&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.camillocavour.com%2Fstories%2FNews%2F278_16_gennaio_2018_consegnato_il_premio_cavour_a_samantha_cristoforetti%2F&edit-text=&act=url

This video, also in Italian, is the recording of the ceremony:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z6NSzOuwScM
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