They're going to discriminate against my 68 year old carcass?
Yeah, I would too.
You knew this day would come, and hopefully you’ve made some smart choices along the way, because it is time to apply to become an astronaut. Yes, a real-life astronaut. NASA has announced this week it is hiring and it wants people to explore the Moon and Mars. If that’s you there's just a month to get everything in order as …
The plan is that Russians will get seats on commercial crew in exchange for Americans going to ISS in a Soyuz. You might be lucky and ride a dragon. With the way the Russian space program is going, a trip in a Soyuz will require courage. Perhaps one day fearless astronauts will go to the ISS in a Boeing CST-100.
The threat of being sent to LOP-G in an Orion is not something the next generation of astronauts needs to worry about too much. Orion has been launched on the discontinued Delta IV Heavy and the last 5 of those are booked by the NRO. The only other possibility for Orion is SLS. In the words of a former NASA administrator: "We don't have a commercially available heavy lift vehicle. Falcon 9 Heavy may someday come about. It's on the drawing board right now. SLS is real. You've seen it down at Michoud. We're building the core stage. We have all the engines done, ready to be put on the test stand at Stennis..." - Charles Bolden, 2014.
(Falcon Heavy demo mission: 2018-02-06. SLS was lifted onto the test stand at Stennis 2020-01-22. At this rate SpaceX Starship+Superheavy will launch before SLS.)
Not a left pondian
Not an MsC
Would a grumpy old bugger sys admin have any use on the moon when their server crashes and they need some dodgy jiggery pokery with disk labels to get it back up before they crash onto the surface of the moon?
Also in the best register tradition I would happily volunteer to study the effects of alcohol in micro and one sixth g.
Not a USian and too old, but meet everything else on their list.
Though would be quite sensible to recruit older people for a Mars trip as plenty of scope for things to go wrong on first attempt(s) and for that to be a terminal one way trip. At my age I would happily take a potentially very high risk of death for chance to reach Mars, but would not have done so in my youth.
I applied. Didn't get it obviously, (some guy called "Tim" did, if you have heard of him? :-) ), but it was great just applying, and not getting told 'nah' straight away. At primary school in the 1970 we all wanted to be astronauts - I managed to hang on to that, got an engineering degree, research experience, learned to fly, and then finally got a chance to actually go for it. So though we all wanted to be astronauts, and none of us are, for me the fact that I know I am not one because I tried my best and another candidate was better makes it not disappointing. Better than "I gave up on that as a silly idea and became X/Y/Z or whatever".
So, anyone thinking of applying for this - do so. Because the point where you fill out the job application form and you get to the little box where you have to answer the question "Why do you want to be an astronaut?" is a pleasure in itself [and I was so tempted just to write "Who doesn't?" in answer to that question :-)] ... and, because, you never know right ?
My parents got our first television to view it and I was allowed stay up.
I'm too old (now) and not american (ever) but that dream was my driver for getting an engineering MSc, learning to fly, and a couple of interviews for ESA jobs.
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