NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) and European Space Agency (ESA) have selected Indian-American Raja Chari to be the Commander of the SpaceX Crew-3 mission to the ISS (International Space Station). Presently Raja Chari,  is a colonel in the United States Air Force. He will be the commander of SpaceX Crew-3 mission, while Nasa’s Tom Marshburn will be pilot and ESA’s Matthias Maurer will serve as a mission specialist. This mission is expected to be launched in 2021.

When Raja Chari, Tom Marshburn, and Matthias Maurer arrive at the orbiting laboratory, they will become expedition crew members for the duration of their 6 month stay at International Space Station. The crew will have a slight overlap with the Crew-2 astronauts, who are expected to launch in the spring of 2021.

Raja Chari

  • He was born in Milwaukee City in Wisconsin, but considers Cedar Falls, Iowa, his hometown. Raja Chari’s father Srinivas Chari left for the US from Hyderabad at a young age for an engineering degree.
  • Raja Chari is a colonel in the United States Air Force and joins the mission with extensive experience as a test pilot.
  • This will be the first spaceflight for Raja Chari. He became a Nasa astronaut in the year 2017. 

Raja Chari as commander of SpaceX Crew 3