Piers Sellers

  • Piers Sellers in 2002
    Credit: NASA
    Name: Piers John Sellers
  • Born: 11th April 1955
  • Died: 23rd December 2016 (aged 61)
  • Nationality: British
  • Occupation: astronaut, meteorologist
  • Time in space: 35 days, 9 hours, 2 minutes

At school, Piers was an Air Force cadet, learning to pilot gliders and powered aircraft. He earned a degree in ecological science (studying the interaction between nature and organisms), and a doctorate in meteorology (studying the atmosphere and weather systems).

He moved to the USA in 1982, to start a job as a climate scientist at NASA. Every year, he would apply to the astronaut training program, but his lack of US citizenship was a problem. In 1991, he was finally awarded US citizenship, and was selected as an astronaut candidate in 1996. He flew to the International Space Station three times during his career as an astronaut, to help assemble its various parts. Piers was also the Director of the Earth Science Division at NASA.

Take a look at our interview with Piers from 2013 in this video.