[SatNews] On Saturday, Professor Manfred Fuchs suddenly and unexpectedly passed away at his holiday house in Altenburg/ Kaltern, South Tirol, at the age of 75 years.
The OHB AG companies mourn the loss of their founder, who played a preeminent role in the European space industry over the last few decades.
Manfred Fuchs was born in Latsch, Italy, in 1938. At the age of 17, he made a name for himself as the youngest pilot in Italy. He came to Germany at the age of 18. After studying aviation engineering in Munich and Hamburg, he embarked in 1961 on his career with space technology company ERNO, playing a key role in projects such as ARIANE-1, SPACELAB and COLUMBUS.
In 1981, his wife Christa took over a small company called Otto Hydraulik Bremen (OHB). Manfred Fuchs entered the company in 1985, fulfilling his dream of running his own business and laying the foundations for one of the most important European space technology companies, OHB AG.
He was named honorary professor by the University of Bremen in 1995, receiving an honorary doctorate from the Technical University of Milan in 2005.
Most recently, Manfred Fuchs was member of the management board at OHB AG, and chairman of the Supervisory Board of OHB System AG. He held numerous honorary positions.
Over a period of eight years, he was a member of the Senate of the German Aerospace Center as well as the vice president of ZARM Förderverein and Hermann Oberth-Gesellschaft. He was also a member of the International Astronautical Academy, a member of the Board of Stifterverband für die Deutsche Wissenschaft, a trustee of the German Museum in Munich, the senate of Deutsche Gesellschaft für Luft- und Raumfahrt and a trustee of the Alfred-Wegner-Institut.
He received several awards in recognition of his services, including the highest German distinction in technical sciences, the “Werner-von-Siemens Ring” as well as the “Golden Hermann Oberth Medal”, the “Golden Hermann Obert Ring, the “Sänger Medal” awarded by DGLR and the gold medal of the Council of European Aerospace Societies (CEAS).
In 2008, he was named honorary citizen of his home town Latsch.
Together with his wife Christa, he was nominated honorary citizen and patron of the University of Bremen in August 2009. In addition, he had been honorary consul of Kazakhstan in Bremen since 2008. In 2013, he was endowed with the “Great Order of Merit of the State of South Tirol.”