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View Full Version : How hard is it to become and Astronaut?



imported_Draco
2003-Nov-21, 08:38 AM
How hard is it to get on the ISS to do those experiments?
Like do you have to be extra smart? To go onto the ISS and do those experiments or become an astronaut and go up there?

DippyHippy
2003-Nov-21, 11:31 PM
I have no idea but Fraser posted a story a little while back which said NASA has got a surplus of astronauts... so dont' be suprised if they're not hiring just yet!

Josh
2003-Nov-22, 12:02 AM
The short answer is it's DAMN HARD!

There are diff requirements for Pilot and Mission Specialist astronauts.

For Mission Specialist: The bare minimum prerequisites require you to have at least a bachelors degree in an acceptable field such as maths, science, engineering, medicine, clinical psychology etc. This has to be followed by three years of work experience in industry in which you are progressivbely given more responsibility. Doing a post graduate degree can be done in place of work experience (of course both are better). You have to have eyesite correctable to 20/20 with no less than 20/200 uncorrected (i think). You have to satisfy the height retrictions (can't remember what they are at the moment). Have to be a citizen of the USA of course too. You have to answer a bazillion questions regarding your medical history and that's about it ...

For Pilots: You need the meet the same physical requirements as above and need at least 1000 hours in jet aircraft as the pilot in command.

Now for the real requirements...

You need to be more well rounded than a soccer ball. You have to have done athletics or a team sport throughout school and college. Higher degrees are basically a must (even for pilots). About pilot astronauts it is noted that test pilot experience is desirable but not necessary ... whenever NASA says desirable then it's another way of saying "You have no chance without it". Active military duty will also rank you higher than most civilians. and civilians without PhD's are scarse. NASA likes people people - people who can interact with others, work in a team and can talk to a crowd. You can scroll through the biographies of the astronauts - past and present - and see that they've all been awarded academic awards, excelled in sport, and have a quirkiness about them - can juggle, play musical instruments, are gymnasts, can build a car from scratch with a box of matches, one screw and a tub of clag glue. A lot of them are into HAM radios, a lot of them (70% or so) went to scouts.
But remember...even if you manage to build your life in such a way that you satify all these amazing things you still have to satisfy the medical reqs. these are pretty strict. Like more than one migraine in your life and you're out, a broken leg is a bad thing, any sort of operation puts you behind the rest etc ...

All that said ... Actually getting to be an astronaut would be the most impressive thing anyone could do in my humble opinion. And if you don't get there and manage to to all these other things then your life would be pretty damn impressive anyway.

So give it a shot!!!!!!

Josh
2003-Nov-22, 12:07 AM
And here is a really good site for finding out everything you could ever want to know about becoming an astronaut and all the forms you'll have to fill out. These folks are on a mailing list and ask each other questions and generally keep you on the ball. A few from the mailing list have even made it in to the Astronaut ranks and off the planet.

Ashos.org (http://www.ashos.org/)

kashi
2003-Nov-22, 12:22 AM
In 50 years time hopefully you won't need to ne an astronaut to experience all that space travel as to offer.

Josh
2003-Nov-22, 12:30 AM
I'd settle for 20 years. But you're right! When space travel is common place ... then we can call ourselves a spacefaring civilization. Bring it on! and make it snappy!!



...god damn medical requirements.

imported_Draco
2003-Nov-22, 03:12 AM
Thanks Josh and the rest of you guys :)
Yeah it does sound a bit hard to get in...i would like to give it a try though.
50 years?! I'll be 60! I don't even want to think about that age! Yes 20 years sounds fine :D

Josh
2003-Nov-22, 04:53 AM
Go for it Draco! Study hard, be active, and have fun and you're half way there.

And if you do get there any time soon, remember that it was ME who gave you all this info and I deserve a reward flight. Thanks.

Josh
2003-Nov-22, 04:57 AM
and here's another good website. This one's out of NASA...

NASA jobs - Astronaut (http://www.nasajobs.nasa.gov/jobs/astronauts/aso/broch00.htm)

Haglund
2003-Nov-22, 09:21 AM
Depending on how rich you are, and depending on how successful the X-Prize teams are, I'd say that you could start buying tickets to suborbital spacehops within two years. Orbital tourism will take a few more years though, but perhaps within ten years?

Fraser
2003-Nov-22, 06:03 PM
I was going to suggest that too. It's probably easier to acquire $20 million to buy your way onto a flight through hard work and investments than it is to become an astronaut.

imported_Draco
2003-Nov-23, 02:10 AM
Originally posted by Josh@Nov 22 2003, 04:53 AM
Go for it Draco! Study hard, be active, and have fun and you're half way there.

And if you do get there any time soon, remember that it was ME who gave you all this info and I deserve a reward flight. Thanks.
lol yes yes a 'reward flight' :P
I think it's best to give those a chance who study hard than not give them a chance and allow people who have millions, a chance to go into space.

QJones
2003-Nov-23, 06:20 AM
Originally posted by fraser@Nov 22 2003, 06:03 PM
It's probably easier to acquire $20 million to buy your way onto a flight through hard work and investments than it is to become an astronaut.
Yep. That's totally true. The extra benefit of taking such a route is that money is going directly into space development. Currently, much of the space program is funded through government budgets, and the problem is that there's always other things to do with the money (roads, or space? schools, or space?). If you fund it with your own money, you are literally infusing the industry with needed cash.

My current plan is to invest my money in a space-development project. I'm saving avidly, and building my investments for future use. What funny about that, is that my renters are effectively working at their jobs - but their jobs are going to support space developments. Flipping burgers for space!

Note: I don't expect to have enough money to invest for at least 12-15 more years. The thing about investing is that you only invest what you can afford to lose.

PetersCreek
2009-Jun-10, 01:15 AM
Nothing new to see here. Thread necromancy the result of spam. Don't mind the smear mark on the linoleum.

mugaliens
2009-Jun-10, 06:23 AM
An acquaintance of mine who lives down the street, former sled driver, was accepted.

He turned it down!