The National Aeronautics and Space Administration is looking for astronauts as it prepares to launch American cosmonauts to the International Space Station. The US space agency has announced that it will start accepting applications from March 2. Those interested for this job will have time up to March 31 for submitting applications. Apart from having relevant degrees, these people need to be prepared to live and work on the International Space Station situated above 400 kilometers above Earth. NASA has 48 active astronauts and it has to expend it to fulfill the requirements for crewed space missions in days to come. NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said that the space agency has entered into the 20th year of continuous presence low-Earth orbit.
“We are all set to send first woman astronaut to the moon by 2024. We will hire highly talented men and women to join our corps of 48 active astronauts. It is an incredible time to be an astronaut,” Bridenstine said. Those with a US citizenship and having a master’s degree in a science, engineering, technology, and math field will be considered for the role of astronomers. The requirement for the master’s degree can be met by being a test pilot with at least 1,000 hours of experience. Others who can be astronauts are those having two years of Ph.D. work or a completed doctor of medicine.
Those who will be applying for the first will have to take an online assessment that will go for 2 hours. The competitiveness of the process can be gauged by the fact that NASA had picked the last set of 11 astronauts from record-breaking 18,000 applicants. These 11 cosmonauts graduated in January. NASA expects to select the next batch of astronauts by mid-2021. These selected candidates will then go for a two-year training program at the Johnson Space Center in Houston. NASA has been selecting Astronauts since the 1960s and so far have trained 350 people for its extreme missions to explore space.