About the author

Tom Uhlig

As a child, Thomas Uhlig had the dream of becoming an astronaut, which he almost lost sight of while studying physics: he received a doctorate in the field of nano-cosmos and operation of electron microscopes for small magnetic particles. But after a period of research at Argonne National Laboratory, his passion for space caught up with him again .

In 2005, he moved to the German Aerospace Center, where he first worked as a planner, then as Operations Coordinator and finally as Columbus flight director . A special highlight for him was being flight controller of 1E- Space Shuttle mission at the console – you could hardly get closer to being an astronaut! He now heads the training team at the Columbus Control Centre that introduces the new colleagues to their work in the control room and certifies them.

Public relations is a particular concern for him - he regrets that hardly anyone in Germany knows that one of the main control centers for the ISS is operated in Oberpfaffenhofen. To remedy this, he has started blogging and is the author of a book on the 1E- mission and several other publications.

Posts from Tom Uhlig

Columbus Blog | 24. July 2014 | 3 Comments

Ausweichen, bevor es kracht!

In meinem Auto merke ich schon bei 100 Kilometern pro Stunde, dass ich ganz schön schnell unterwegs bin. In der schönen Limousine unserer Fahrbereitschaft gehen auch schon einmal 160 Stundenkilometer, ohne dass man die Geschwindigkeit irgendwie groß merkt. Klar, denn Geschwindigkeit alleine kann man praktisch nicht wahrnehmen. Beschleunigungen ja, aber wenn man konstant unterwegs ist, merkt man nur relativ zu anderen Dingen, wie schnell man ist. Oder eben daran, dass das Auto zu klappern beginnt. Ähnlich ist es bei der ISS. Die Geschwindigkeit der Raumstation ist noch wesentlich höher - hier braucht es 28.000 Kilometer pro Stunde, damit die Station nicht "herunterfällt". read more

Columbus Blog | 24. July 2014 | 3 Comments

An evasive manoeuvre to avoid a crash!

In my car, even at 100 kilometres per hour, I perceive that I’m travelling along quite quickly. In the nice saloon in our car pool, you can reach up to 160 kilometres per hour without it feeling that much faster. Of course, this is because you cannot perceive speed alone. You can notice accelerations, but when you are travelling at a constant speed, you can only tell how fast you are moving relative to other objects – or perhaps when the car begins to rattle. It is the same on the ISS. The speed of the Space Station is much greater – it needs to travel at 28,000 kilometres per hour so it doesn’t ‘fall down’ read more