New Record Set: Over 18,300 apply to become NASA astronaut
Creating a new record, more than 18,300 people have applied for 14 or even less seats to become a NASA astronaut. This year’s record has broken the 1978 record when 8,000 applications were received.
NASA’s Administrator Charles Bolden said that it is not at all surprising for him to see so many Americans from different backgrounds to be interested in contributing to the upcoming Mars journey.
“A few exceptionally talented men and women will become the astronauts chosen in this group who will once again launch to space from U.S. soil on American-made spacecraft”, affirmed Bolden. Now, the next procedure for more than 18 months will be that NASA’s astronaut-selection board will select from the deposited applications.
They will choose the top applicants, who will be interviewed at Johnson Space Center in Houston. The last round comprises of selecting final eight to 14 astronaut candidates for training. The training will continue for around two years in which the trainees will be trained on spacecraft systems, spacewalking skills and teamwork, Russian language and other requisite skills.
Those who would be able to make through the training will either be assigned for International Space Station, NASA's Orion spacecraft, the Boeing CST-100 Starliner or the SpaceX Crew Dragon. Orion is currently in development phase and will be launched in the early 2020s on the new Space Launch System mega-rocket.
It will be able to support a crew of four for up to 21 days. Brian Kelly, director of Flight Operations at Johnson Space Center, was of the view that that it is very heartening to know that so many people have been recognizing the opportunities, which are going to be part of NASA’s exciting mission.
Kelly said that he is excited to meet the men and women who would rise to the top of a poll of incredible applicants.
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