Max Mergeay is a microbiologist with a formation in Chemistry (PhD at ULB). During at least 30 years, he animated on the site of Mol (mainly at the Belgian Center for Nuclear Energy (SCK•CEN) but also in the Flemish Institute for Technological Research (VITO)) a research group of molecular environmental microbiology and biotechnology (mainly industrial environments polluted by heavy metals and xenobiotics) and on spatial microbiology. Main attention was given to the diversity of mobile genetic elements of metal-resistant Betaproteobacteria (often located on megaplasmids) and their accessory genes (host range, resistance, stress responses, catabolic and other metabolic properties) as well as to environmental applications. In 1989, he was elected Member of the National Committee of Microbiology (CNM/NCM) (Royal Academies of Sciences of Belgium), that later gave rise to the BSM. Presently, as a consultant of ESA (European Space Agency). he is also active in the MELiSSA Foundation that selects and supports PhD students and postdocs working for life support in space flights and planetary stations. He is also HonProf.at ULB, scientific collaborator at the University of Mons and consultant of SCK•CEN.