Credit: SpaceX

Eytan Stibbe is a former Israeli fighter pilot, businessman and commercial astronaut. After he started his fighter pilot training course in 1976, Stibbe flew thousands of hours in Skyhawk, Phantom and F-16 fighter aircraft. During his time in the Israeli Air Force he was assigned to 117 Squadron flying F-16 fighter jets under the command of Colonel Ilan Ramon, who later became the first ever Israeli to fly in space aboard NASA's STS-107 space mission. He also served as a flight instructor at the Israeli Air Force Flight Academy from 2013-2019. After his military service, Stibbe joined a team of advisers at Israel Aircraft Industries and he also became a member of the advisory committee of Bridges Israel which is an impact investment fund that invests in Israeli businesses. In November 2020 Aytan Stibbe paid the American space company Axiom Space to become a space tourist on a private space mission to the International Space Station aboard a SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft. Fot his space trip Stibbe paid $55 million.

Astronaut info

Country: Israel Israel
Born: January 12, 1958
  • Fighter pilot (Israeli Air Force)
  • Businessman (Vital Capital)
Space missions:
  • Ax-1 (2022)
Spacewalks 0
Time in space 17d 1h 48m
Website: /

Space mission overview

Mission Date launch Rocket Launch base Orbit Spacecraft Title Patch Duration
Ax-1 08/04/2022

Kennedy Space Center (USA) 585 km SpaceX Crew Dragon Mission Specialist 1 Ax-1 17 days, 1 hours
Axiom Mission 1 (Ax-1) was a privately funded and operated crewed mission to the International Space Station (ISS). The mission was operated by Axiom Space out of Axiom's Mission Control Center in Houston, Texas. This private space mission started on 8 April 2022 and the Crew Dragon spacecraft of SpaceX was launched atop a Falcon 9 Block 5 launch vehicle from Kennedy Space Center's Launch Complex 39A. A day later the Crew Dragon spacecraft docked with the International Space Station (ISS). Eytan Stibbe became the second Israeli in space, after Ilan Ramon who was killed in 2003 when the Space Shuttle Columbia disintegrated upon re-entry into the atmosphere. Eytan Stibbe paid tribute to Ramon during the Ax-1 mission by taking surviving pages from ramon's space diary, as well as mementos from his children. During their days aboard the ISS, the private crew conducted more than 25 different research experiments. Stibbe was accompanying and demonstrating many Israeli technologies during his stay onboard the International Space Station (ISS) such as AstroRad, a radiation protective vest from the Israeli-American start-up StemRad. Bad weather in the landing zone delayed the return of the Ax-1 crew with several days. As result the crew spent 16 days docked to the ISS for a total of 17 days in orbit.

Video: Ax-1 Mission Specialist Eytan Stibbe



Images: Axiom Space

Kris Christiaens's Avatar

Kris Christiaens

This article was published by FutureSpaceFlight founder and chief editor Kris Christiaens. Kris Christiaens has been passionate and fascinated by spaceflight and space exploration all his life and has written hundreds of articles on space projects, the commercial space industry and space missions over the past 20 years for magazines, books and websites. In late 2021, he founded the website FutureSpaceFlight with the goal of promoting new space companies and commercial space projects and compiling news of these start-ups and companies on one website.