ESA project astronaut Marcus Wandt from Sweden will travel to the International Space Station on Axiom Mission 3 (Ax-3) in early next year. Flight is planned now for "no earlier than" January 2024.
In this photo, Marcus is wearing his Axiom Space flight suit with special patches: his Muninn and Axiom-3 mission patches, emblems from the European Space Agency and Axiom Space, as well as from the Royal Swedish Air Force and the Swedish flag.
Mission patches for astronaut missions tend to blend the space travellers’ personality, the mission goals, and the creativity of an artist. The name and symbolism behind Marcus’s mission were a good starting point for inspiration.
Meanwhile, ESA and Axiom Space signed a Memorandum of Understanding on 1 October in Paris to explore collaborative opportunities in human spaceflight, science, technology, and commercialisation. Marcus's mission is a pathfinder for this new cooperation, which includes not only flights of the European astronauts on Axiom missions but also Axiom's purchases from Europe and further cooperation with the ESA, its partners, and European companies.