Tim Peake was selected as a European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut in May 2009. Upon graduating from astronaut basic training in November 2010, he spent three years conducting further training and working as a communicator with the International Space Station (ISS) prior to his assignment to a long-duration mission in 2013.
Peake was the first British ESA astronaut to visit the ISS, launching on a Soyuz rocket on December 15, 2015, with crewmates Tim Kopra and Yuri Malenchenko. His principia mission was an eventful and busy six months in space. In the first month, Peake conducted a spacewalk to repair the Station's power supply. Other highlights of his mission saw him drive a rover across a simulated Mars terrain from space and capture a visiting cargo spacecraft. In all, Peake took part in more than 250 scientific experiments for ESA and international partners during his mission. His principia mission also focused on educational outreach, engaging more than 2 million school children across Europe in more than 30 projects during his time in space. Peake also ran the London marathon using the ISS’ treadmill. He returned to Earth on June 18, 2016.
Prior to his astronaut career, Peake was an officer in the British Army Air Corps. In 1992, he served on attachment with the Royal Green Jackets as a Platoon Commander in Northern Ireland before beginning flight training. He was awarded his Army Flying Wings in 1994. He flew on military operations in the Former Republic of Yugoslavia and Afghanistan. As a test pilot, he was involved in numerous test flights on different types of military helicopters.
On retirement from the British Army as a major in 2009, Peake was employed as a senior helicopter test pilot for AgustaWestland. During his career, he has logged more than 3,000 hours of flying time on 30+ types of helicopter and fixed-wing aircraft, including the Apache, Hawk, Dakota and Mi-17. He holds both private and commercial pilot’s licenses and maintains his flying.
Peake was appointed Companion of the Order of St. Michael and St. George (CMG) in the Queen’s 2016 Birthday Honours for services to space research and scientific education. He received a bachelor of science in flight dynamics and evaluation from the University of Portsmouth in 2006.
Married with two sons, Peake enjoys skiing, scuba diving, cross-country running, climbing, quantum physics and aviation.