Highlights of ESTEC Open Day on Sunday 6 October 2013. More than 8 500 members of the public visited ESA’s largest establishment, located in Noordwijk, the Netherlands, during the day-long event. Attractions included a chance to meet three ESA astronauts: Ulf Merbold, ESA’s very first astronaut, who flew on a Space Shuttle Spacelab mission 30 years ago this year, Reinhold Ewald who visited Mir in 1997, and André Kuipers who flew to the International Space Station in 2004 and 2011-2012. Visitors also the chance to see ESA’s BepiColombo mission to Mercury, see highlights from ESA’s technical laboratories, try out an inflatable planetarium, shoot water from the ESTEC fire engine’s fire hoses, fly drones by remote control and meet the men and women behind Europe’s missions in space.
[ Read the Article: Thousands Meet Space Experts And Astronauts At ESA’s Technical Center ]