With the Jülich shirt at an altitude of over 3,800 metres: Alfred Budwig

Freefall over Belgium: Alfred Budwig during a tandem jump in a Jülich shirt

Up to now, the electrical engineer Alfred Budwig (ZEA-1) was usually drawn to the depths for an adventure: as a hobby diver, he has explored many a lake and bay in the world over many years. But since May everything has been different: "A private stroke of fate turned my life upside down," says the electrical engineer, who has worked at the research centre for 20 years. "You have to gradually learn to deal with something like that as best you can," says the 55-year-old. Most of the time, Budwig says, he already manages quite well. "But last week I needed something really liberating again. That's when I came up with the idea of skydiving."

"The jump felt really good"

Without further ado, Budwig booked a tandem jump in nearby Belgium - and the very next day, early in the morning, he and his jump pilot were the first to jump out of the plane at 3,850 metres. "I had never done anything like that before. Nevertheless, I wasn't afraid. Because I really wanted to do it - and the jump felt really good!" In the end, it was almost a bit like diving: "The free fall felt so similar to floating under water," the colleague reports.

Record with Jülich shirt

At an altitude of 3,850 metres: the colleague from ZEA-1 shortly before the jump.

Budwig spontaneously took his Jülich shirt with him to Belgium. "I thought to myself: as long as I'm this high in the air, I'll let myself be photographed for the beautiful gallery," he smiles. "The T-shirts have been around the world so many times - but I don't think any have been this high up." Because of the T-shirt, he also got into conversation with many people on the ski jump about the research centre. In Jülich, Budwig works as an electrical engineer at ZEA-1, mainly in the field of process automation. He is currently working in the JCNS team on automation processes for the TOPAS time-of-flight spectrometer.


Last Modified: 26.04.2022