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Mike Foale, an astrophysicist, was the fifth NASA astronaut to reside on Mir. Foale arrived at the Russian space station with the crew of STS-84 aboard the Space Shuttle Atlantis which launched on May 15, 1997. Foale's 134 days of living and working on Mir included several unexpected situations.
Six weeks into Foale's stay, a Progress resupply ship rammed into Spektr, one of Mir's five modules. The collision on June 25, 1997, caused a loss of pressure aboard the station. Foale and the Mir-23 crew members spent many intense hours developing methods for possible repairs to the module and to correct related incidents that caused instability in the performance of the Mir. With Mir-24 Commander Anatoly Solovyev, Foale conducted a six-hour EVA to inspect the damage to the punctured module on September 6, 1997.
Foale returned to Earth on October 6, 1997, with the crew of STS-86 aboard the Space Shuttle Atlantis.
Foale became a NASA astronaut in 1988. In addition to his Mir mission, he has flown on three shuttle flights. Prior to his NASA career, Foale participated in scientific scuba diving expeditions to survey Greek antiquities. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in physics, National Sciences Tripos, with 1st class honors from the University of Cambridge, Queens' College. He also earned a doctorate in Laboratory Astrophysics at Queens' College.
For more information on Foale's stay on Mir, select Shuttle Flights & Mir Increments, Foale Increment.
NASA Biography: Michael Foale
Michael Foale Oral History (PDF)
C. Michael Foale Video (15 sec.) MPEG (1.1M) (No Audio)
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