Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Astronaut Tim Peake receives University of Portsmouth honorary degree

Tim Peake Image copyright PA
Image caption Tim Peake receiving an Honorary Doctorate of Science Degree from Graham Galbraith, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Portsmouth

Astronaut Tim Peake has been presented with an honorary degree by the University of Portsmouth.

Major Peake, who spent six months on the International Space Station earlier this year, described his honorary doctorate of science as a huge honour.

The astronaut studied flight dynamics and evaluation at the same university, graduating in 2006.

He received the degree on Wednesday evening ahead of a talk on his mission to the International Space Station.

Major Peake added: "It is made even more special as I received my first degree from the University of Portsmouth 10 years ago.

"Unfortunately that 10 years isn't an indication of how youthful I am but indicates that I attained a degree later in life at the grand old age of 34, showing you can still achieve your goals later on in life."

The honorary degree is the highest honour that can be given to a former student.

Image copyright Tim Peake
Image caption Posting a message on his Twitter account ahead of the conference, the astronaut said: "Great to be back on home turf."
Image copyright ESA/NASA
Image caption Tim Peake during his first spacewalk at the International Space Station

The event followed a UK Space Agency Schools Conference, inspired by his mission, held earlier at the university.

The conference celebrated the work of more than one million UK school students including a mass schools rocket seeds experiment led by Major Peake.

Major Peake returned to Earth in June after a six-month stay aboard the ISS.

During his mission, he completed the first spacewalk by a UK astronaut and ran an equivalent of the London Marathon.

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