with nasa now mid-hunt for their next class of astronauts, wired decided to take a trip to the johnson space center in houston, tx to get a sneak peak of what these future space explorers would go through if they’re lucky enough to make the cut. nasa was accepting applications between december 14, 2015 and february 18 of this year, and in that time they received a whopping 18,300 submissions. if that trend holds, roughly 14,400 people will make it to the next round of evaluations this year. after meeting those basic requirements, the panel—composed mostly of flown astronauts—reviews candidates for things like education quality, mission-applicable experience, and teamwork and leadership skills.
“we look at the full package: not just what work experience do they have and what education, but what are their hobbies, adventures, and things of that nature.” that winnows the group to about 500 candidates. those lucky ducks will go through at least two years of training in spacewalking, spacecraft systems, the russian language, and more. and finally, gloriously, nasa will assign them to a mission aboard either the iss, the nasa’s orion spacecraft, space x’s crew dragon, or boeing’s cst-100 starliner—assuming those last two are ready for primetime. maybe they’ll be looking for the next voice of the space program; a storyteller to make the stars accessible to the people back on earth and inspire the next generation of scientists. do not sell my personal information the material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with the prior written permission of condé nast.
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