Suzie Imber

Credit: BBC/James Cheadle

Suzie is an associate professor of Planetary Science and a graduate of the University of Leicester, having studied for her PhD in the Department of Physics and Astronomy under the supervision of Professor Steve Milan.

In 2017 she fought off tough competition from 11 other exceptional candidates in BBC Two’s Astronauts: Do You Have What It Takes?, chosen from thousands who applied, including scientists, engineers and pilots, to receive the ultimate reference – Chris Hadfield’s backing for her application when the space agency ESA next take on astronaut recruits.

Dr Imber has held posts at NASA Goddard Space Flight Centre and the University of Michigan, and is currently involved in instrument design and operation for ESA’s next mission to Mercury. Suzie was an international lacrosse player in earlier years, and is also an elite rower and a highly-experienced mountaineer.

She has written computer code to identify and map unclimbed peaks in the Andes and Himalayas before setting off to climb them herself, completing several first ascents. Suzie has been interested in space from a young age, and has spent her academic career looking at our solar system – her current research looks at terrestrial space weather and Mercury’s magnetosphere.

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