Have you always dreamed of becoming an astronaut? Now may finally be a good time to apply.
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has announced that they are opening their doors for new astronauts from December 14 through mid-February 2016. Qualified applicants will be named on 2017 and will eventually be sent out to a Mars mission.
— NASA (@NASA) November 4, 2015
Charles Bolden, NASA Chief Administrator, said:
“This next group of American space explorers will inspire the Mars generation to reach for new heights, and help us realize the goal of putting boot prints on the Red Planet. Those selected for this service will fly on US-made spacecraft from American soil, advance critical science and research aboard the International Space Station, and help push the boundaries of technology in the proving ground of deep space.”
Applicants are required to have a bachelor’s degree in Math, Engineering, Biological or Physical Sciences preferably also with an advanced degree. Another important requirement is to have at least 3 years of professional experience or 1,000 hours of jet plane piloting.
How Astronauts Work
Basically, there are two types of astronauts namely mission specialists astronauts and pilot astronauts.
Mission specialist astronauts do the work of conducting experiments, launching satellites, maintaining spacecraft, and others. They may also educate other students to join the space program.
Pilot astronauts, as their name implies, work as pilots and commanders for space shuttles and international space stations. Their main responsibility is to ensure that the crew will be safe and that the mission will be carried out successfully.
New astronauts go through a rigorous training which can take as much as 2 to 3 years.