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RIP Colin Pillinger

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RIP Colin Pillinger

bit of a shock


Colin Pillinger dies after brain haemorrhage

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British planetary scientist Colin Pillinger, best known for his 2003 attempt to land a spacecraft on Mars, has died aged 70, his family have said.

Prof Pillinger was at his home in Cambridge when he suffered a brain haemorrhage and fell into a deep coma.

His family said he later died at Addenbrooke's Hospital without regaining consciousness.

His death was "devastating and unbelievable", they said in a statement.

Dr David Parker, the chief executive of the UK Space Agency, led the tributes.

He told the BBC that Prof Pillinger had played a critical role in raising the profile of the British space programme and had inspired "young people to dream big dreams".

The Science Minister David Willetts called him a "delightful man and a free spirit". And added: "His vision of space exploration and his dedication to it inspired the nation."

And Prof Mark Sims, the mission manager on the 2003 Beagle-2 probe, recalled: "Colin was a top-rate scientist. You might not have agreed with him but he always went for what he believed in. It was a privilege to have known him and worked with him, both as a friend and colleague."

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He seemed like a great bloke to me. As professors go I suspect he was one of the best to have a drink in the pub with. :) Loved the accent and the facial hair, character blokey. :D

Beagle 2 getting destroyed or lost was a tragedy at the time but he seemed to remain optimistic afterwards, publicly at least. Would have been wonderful if it had all worked out.

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Yup definitely a West Country Pub Drinker. One of the best parts of the world for pub life IMO :)

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a great guy . i'd loved to have gone to the pub with him

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