Claude Nicollier
Name: Claude Nicollier
Occupation: Astronaut
Gender: Male
Birth Day: September 2, 1944
Age: 76
Birth Place: Vevey, Switzerland
Zodiac Sign: Virgo

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Claude Nicollier

Claude Nicollier was born on September 2, 1944 in Vevey, Switzerland (76 years old). Claude Nicollier is an Astronaut, zodiac sign: Virgo. Nationality: Switzerland. Approx. Net Worth: Undisclosed.


He is the first European Space Agency astronaut to participate in a spacewalk while on a Space Shuttle mission.

Net Worth 2020

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Before Fame

He was Captain in the Swiss Air Force and became a test pilot.


Biography Timeline


Nicollier was born September 2, 1944. After graduating from the Gymnase de Lausanne (high school) in Lausanne in 1962, he studied physics at the University of Lausanne and received a BSc degree in 1970. He then worked as a graduate scientist from 1970 to 1973 at the Institute of Astronomy at the University and at the Geneva Observatory, before obtaining a MSc degree in astrophysics from the University of Geneva in 1975. In parallel, he became a Swiss Air Force pilot in 1966, in the Fliegerstaffel 5 on Hawker Hunter where he holds a commission as captain, and has logged 5,600 hours flying time, including 4,000 hours in jet aircraft. Later, in 1988, he graduated as a test pilot from the Empire Test Pilot's School in Boscombe Down, United Kingdom.


Concurrently with his part-time research activities, he joined the Swiss Air Transport School in Zürich and became an airline pilot in 1974, assigned as a DC-9 pilot for Swissair. At the end of 1976, he accepted a Fellowship at the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Space Science Department at Noordwijk, Netherlands, where he worked as a research scientist in various airborne infrared astronomy programs. In July 1978, he was selected by ESA as a member of the first group of European astronauts. Under agreement between ESA and NASA, he joined NASA Astronaut Group 9 selected in May 1980 for astronaut training as a mission specialist. Unlike colleague Wubbo Ockels—who withdrew from training to focus on Spacelab and remained an ESA payload specialist—Nicollier became a mission specialist, the first non-American to become a full-time NASA astronaut.


Nicollier's first spaceflight was as a Mission Specialist on the 8-day Space Shuttle mission aboard Atlantis, called STS-46, in 1992. The crew deployed the European Retrievable Carrier EURECA, as well as the Tethered Satellite System-1, which was a joint NASA and Italian Space Agency project.


His second spaceflight was as a Mission Specialist on the 10-day mission aboard Endeavour, called STS-61, in 1993. It was the first mission to service the Hubble Space Telescope, which had been launched three years previously.


In 1996 he took part in STS-75, aboard Space Shuttle Columbia, which deployed TSS-1R, which was a follow-up mission to TSS-1 which had been deployed during STS-46.


His final spaceflight was an 8-day mission aboard Space Shuttle Discovery, called STS-103, in 1999. It was the third servicing mission to the Hubble Space Telescope. During this mission Nicollier participated in an 8-hour spacewalk; it was his first, and the first of any ESA astronaut during a Space Shuttle mission.


In 2004, he started teaching at the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, and became a full professor in March 2007.


Nicollier's technical assignments in the Astronaut Office have included flight software verification in the Shuttle Avionics Integration Laboratory (SAIL), participation in the development of retrieval techniques for the Tethered Satellite System (TSS), Remote Manipulator System (RMS), and International Space Station (ISS) robotics support. From the Spring of 1996 to the end of 1998, he was Head of the Astronaut Office Robotics Branch. From the year 2000 on, he was assigned to the Astronaut Office EVA (Extravehicular Activity) Branch, while maintaining a position as Lead ESA astronaut in Houston. Nicollier retired from ESA in April 2007.


Following his astronaut career, he delivered a lecture on his experiences, “Revisiting Hubble,” at the first Starmus Festival in 2011 in the Canary Islands. The talk was published in the book Starmus: 50 Years of Man in Space.

🎂 Upcoming Birthday

Currently, Claude Nicollier is 77 years, 11 months and 9 days old. Claude Nicollier will celebrate 78th birthday on a Friday 2nd of September 2022.

Find out about Claude Nicollier birthday activities in timeline view here.

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