Helen Sharman

Helen Sharman was the first British Citizen to travel space and also to visit the Mir Space Station. She was selected as a part of the Juno Project. Sharman was also the fifth youngest person to fly in space at just 27 years old when she went on her mission.

Helen was born on May 30th 1963 in Sheffield, England. She graduated in chemistry from the University of Sheffield in 1984 and received a doctorate from Birbeck College, London. Before becoming an astronaut, she worked for a confectionery company. There she worked on the chemistry of ice cream and chocolate.


Fast Facts: –

  • Helen Sharman launched into space as a research cosmonaut with two others, Anatoly Artsebarsky and Sergey Krikalyov on May 18th 1991.
  • She spent a total of eight days on the Mir Space Station and returned to Earth aboard Soyuz TM-11 on May 26th.
  • She got to know about the Project Juno through a radio advert in 1989 while working as a research chemist.
  • She had gone through a strict selection process for this and was one of more than 13,000 applicants.
  • Helen spent 18 months training in Star City, a Russian training facility before being launched into space.
  • Sharman has a star on the Sheffield Walk of Fame. She was also awarded the “Order of the British Empire”.
  • She was shortlisted once again by the ESA in 1992 and 1998 but was not selected in the final group of astronauts.
  • Currently, Helen Sharman is working as operations manager in Imperial College London’s chemistry department.