astronaut candidates

archival-hogwash  asked:

Hi there! Big fan here, wondering if you'd be down to take on the "famous person is interviewed about when they were in love and HOLD UP IT'S their long-lost love" for RogueJedi (Bodhi Rook x Luke Skywalker)?

Oooh, a chance to write two of my favorite Space Disasters! Yes please! 

Also, you are the sweetest! (blushes) (throws a fic at you)

Bodhi was comfortable, sprawled out on the couch, feet up on the ottoman. He was  half-attending to his phone and half-watching the television when Jyn came out of the kitchen with a plate full of sandwiches and offered him one.

Bodhi took the sandwich. “You’re the best.”

“You know it.” Jyn sat down on the couch next to him, leaning against him slightly.

“Cassian is right there.” Bodhi said, gesturing at Jyn’s boyfriend seated at the kitchen table, head buried in his laptop.

“Well, I’m cold and you’re right here. Deal.” Jyn said.

The television droned in the background, “And next up we have Commander Luke Lars, with his new book ‘Skywalker.’ Commander Lars, it’s good to have you with us.”

Call me Luke, please.”

Keep reading

Answer Time with NASA Astronaut Peggy Whitson

Ever wonder what it’s like to be a NASA astronaut? On Thursday, Oct. 29, NASA Astronaut Peggy Whitson will answer your questions! She’ll explain how it takes the NASA Village to help train for her mission to space, what the challenges of living in space are and what it’s like to be a NASA astronaut.

Enter your questions here. The Answer Time begins at 3 p.m. EDT on Thursday, Oct. 29.

Fun facts about NASA Astronaut Peggy Whitson:

  • Astronaut Whitson was selected as an Astronaut Candidate in April 1996, and started training in August of the same year.
  • After completing two years of training and evaluation, she served as the lead for the Crew Test Support Team in Russia from 1998 to 1999.
  • Astronaut Whitson completed two six-month tours of duty aboard the International Space Station.
  • She has accumulated 377 days in space between two missions, which is the most for any woman.
  • Astronaut Whitson has performed a total of six career spacewalks, adding up to 39 hours and 46 minutes! She is also one of only a handful of people to perform spacewalks in both Russian and US spacesuits.
  • She is scheduled to launch in late 2016 as part of the Expedition 50/51.
  • Firsts:
    • Science Officer of the International Space Station
    • Female Commander for the International Space Station
    • Female to serve as Chief of the Astronaut Office

Follow her on social media to see how it takes a NASA Village to train her for her upcoming mission: Tumblr, Facebook and Twitter


G E N E R A T I O N   K I L L   A U   |   T h e   M a r t i a n

         ↳ meet the crew

  • CDR. Nathaniel Fick; Fick graduated with honors from the US Naval Academy. He will be the youngest commander to lead a mission to Mars.
  • Brad Colbert; Colbert graduated high school at sixteen, and won NASA’s largest hackathon at seventeen before moving on to MIT for dual undergraduate degrees in math and computer science. 
  • Ray Person; Person applied to the NASA Astronaut Candidate Program and was selected for his outstanding academic accomplishments, dedication and service to community, and an exemplary record of professional achievements.
  • Walt Hasser; Hasser holds a master’s degree in both chemistry and astrophysics as well as a doctorate in chemistry from the California Institute of Technology. A noted scientist and experience astronaut, he will serve as the navigtor on the Hermes.
  • Antonio Espera; Espera earned a bachelor of science in astronautical engineering at the United States Air Force Academy. He now joins the Ares 3 crew as pilot after eleven decorated years of service in the United States Air Force.
  • DR. Timothy Bryan; Bryan graduated cum laude from the Yale School of Medicine. Since joining NASA, Timothy Bryan has made two trips to SpaceXStation and completed five spacewalks (EVAs.)

So one of the things that cracks me up about Leverage is that Eliot is, as far as I can tell, good at everything. Like they’re like, “Okay Eliot, you have to handle X” and he’s like “[sigh] FINE” and then he owns it.

Thus far just off the top of my head he has been:

  • a gourmet chef
  • a star baseball player (when he DOESN’T EVEN LIKE BASEBALL)
  • a hit country singer/guitar player
  • knows a ton of languages
  • has a lot of weirdly specific trivial knowledge that reliably comes in useful
  • I’m sure in some future episode he will turn out to know how to race cars or breed shih tzus or something (I am only partway into season 3)

(even apart from his skill with beating people up and related hitter talents, which I am not counting because that is the premise of his character)

Plus also he is apparently irresistible to women, a trope that I normally find obnoxious but that I cannot really argue with in this case because I would find him sort of hard to resist. (Hardison is far, far more my type, but Eliot is hot. Also I have a weakness for men with long hair. Well, anybody with long hair really but especially men. I should put ‘having your hair look silky and glossy even after you’ve beaten up fifteen people’ on the list of skills above, I think. I would like to know what conditioner he uses.)

…And all this ought to make his character insufferable. And yet he isn’t. Because he is hands-down the most put-upon member of the team. He may technically be the hitter, but he’s also the one where people are like, “Eliot. You have a bag of jelly beans. Use that to convince them that you are an orca trainer and should be permitted in the tank with the angry Shamu” or “Eliot, we need you to pretend to be an Olympic snowboarder, you have ten minutes to find a snowboard, GO.” 

And then afterwards he puts his head down on the table and moans quietly to himself while getting surprisingly little respect for being able to yank expert cooking/singing/baseball/whatever skills out of his ass.

Oh, Eliot. This is why I want to give you five hundred hugs. 

(This is inspired by having just watched the episode where Eliot has to masquerade as a country music star and gets a fan club in like fifteen minutes. Mr Badger and I had this conversation:

Me: I have figured out who Eliot is.

Mr Badger: Who?

Me: Barbie.

Mr Badger: Elucidate?

Me: He is good at everything, apparently. And Barbie was, what, a doctor, a lawyer, a presidential candidate, an astronaut, a veterinarian–

Mr Badger: –and got shockingly little respect for it.

Me: And had beautiful hair.)

5 Myths About Becoming an Astronaut

Have you ever wondered if you have what it takes to become a NASA Astronaut? The term “astronaut” derives from the Greek word meaning “space sailor,” and refers to all who have been launched as crew members aboard NASA spacecraft bound for orbit and beyond.

We’re looking for a new class of astronauts to join the NASA team, and here are a few things to know.

Here are a few myths about becoming an astronaut:

MYTH: All astronauts have piloting experience.

FACT: You don’t need to be a pilot to be an astronaut. Flying experience is not a requirement, but could be beneficial to have.

MYTH: All astronauts have perfect vision.

FACT: It’s okay if you don’t have 20/20 vision. As of September 2007, corrective surgical procedures of the eye (PRK and LASIK), are now allowed, providing at least 1 year has passed since the date of the procedure with no permanent adverse after effects.

MYTH: All astronauts have advanced degrees like, a PhD.

FACT: While a Bachelor’s degree from an accredited university is necessary, an advanced degree is not required to become an astronaut.

MYTH: Astronauts are required to have military experience in order to be selected.

FACT: Military experience is not required to become an astronaut.

MYTH: You have to be a certain age in order to be an astronaut. 

FACT: There are no age restrictions. Astronaut candidates selected in the past have ranged between the ages of 26 and 46, with the average age being 34.

Okay, but What are the requirements?

Basic Qualification Requirements

Applicants must meet the following minimum requirements before submitting an application. 

  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution in engineering, biological science, physical science or mathematics.
  • Degree must be followed by at least 3 years of related, progressively responsible, professional experience or at least 1,000 pilot-in-command time in jet aircraft. An advanced degree is desirable and may be substituted for experience as follows: master’s degree = 1 year of experience, doctoral degree = 3 years of experience.  Teaching experience, including experience at the K - 12 levels, is considered to be qualifying experience for the Astronaut Candidate position; provided degree is in a Science, Engineering, or Mathematics field.
  • Ability to pass the NASA Astronaut physical, which includes the following specific requirements:
    • Distant and near visual acuity: Must be correctable to 20/20, each eye
      • The refractive surgical procedures of the eye, PRK and LASIK, are allowed, providing at least 1 year has passed since the date of the procedure with no permanent adverse after effects.  For those applicants under final consideration, an operative report on the surgical procedure will be requested.

Applications for our next astronaut class open on Dec. 14! Visit:

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The NASA Village

Today in the NASA Village… So you want to be an astronaut?

The road to becoming an astronaut is as diverse as the NASA Village itself. Today’s astronauts come from varied career backgrounds.  NASA has recruited doctors, scientists, engineers, teachers and a veterinarian to serve as astronauts.

I had dreamed of being an astronaut since I was 9 years old when Armstrong and Aldrin walked on the moon.  It became a goal to be an astronaut when I graduated high school, because that was the first year they selected female astronauts.  After getting a Ph.D in Biochemistry, I applied for 10 years to become an astronaut before I was lucky enough to be selected to become an astronaut.  I was selected as part of the Astronaut Class of 1996 along with 34 other people, the largest NASA astronaut class so far.

If you get selected, you are given the title “astronaut candidate” or “ASCAN”.  Yes, it is pronounced like it looks!  As an ASCAN, you begin two years of intensive astronaut candidate training which includes team building, survival skills, and technical space systems training.

The technical training includes robotics instruction, how to perform spacewalks, operational training in T-38 Talon supersonic jet, language training, expeditionary crew skills, and specialized hardware and science instruction.

Andrew Morgan, shown with his classmate Nicole Mann, were part of the most recent Astronaut Class of 2013.

Andrew said “EVA (“spacewalk”) training is some of the most exciting training we do as astronauts.  Every training run in the Neutral Buoyancy Laboratory begins with several days of preparation.  One way we prepare is by making a SCUBA dive in the NBL to look at the ISS mock-up and study the components we will fix when we’re wearing the EMU (spacesuit).  By wearing standard SCUBA equipment we have a little more freedom of motion to look around and it helps us become familiar with the part of ISS where we will work when we wear the spacesuit underwater.”

Andrew and Nicole just recently completed ASCAN training and earned their astronaut wings.  It is the culmination of a lifetime of dedication and perseverance to reach that goal. Their new job duties include support of mission operations and technical duties while awaiting their spaceflight assignments, which might take 1-5 years.  Once assigned to a mission, you have another 2 ½ years of intensive training for that mission.

What are your odds of becoming an astronaut you may wonder? Nicole and Drew were 2 people selected from 6300 applicants that year.  But don’t let the odds discourage you, you will never become an astronaut if you don’t try.

I had the privilege of being a member of the 2004 Astronaut Selection Board, and I chaired the 2009 Astronaut Selection Board. I am always so impressed with the caliber and quality of people who apply.

The basic requirements for becoming an astronaut are straight forward:

1. A bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution in engineering, biological science, physical science, or mathematics. (Quality of academic preparation is important and the higher education you have the more likely your chance of success).

2. Degree must be followed by at least 3 years of related, progressively responsible, professional experience or at least 1,000 hours of pilot-in-command time in jet aircraft. (Teaching experience is considered to be qualifying experience for the Astronaut Candidate position).

3. You will need to pass the NASA long-duration space flight physical (rigorous would be a complementary discriptor of all the tests that have to be passed).  Because we are going on longer duration missions, 6 months or more, we want to ensure the astronauts are in good health and won’t encounter any serious medical issues in space. And, you want to be in good shape to help minimize bone and muscle loss, and also to be able to do spacewalks. It takes a LOT of upper body strength to work in the space suits for 6-7 hours!

Some other factors that the selection board would consider include a genuine appreciation and love of the spaceflight program, a team-based orientation, language skills, organizational skills, and an ability to communicate a spirit of discovery.  And, since astronauts will be spending more time in space than ever before, it’s crucial that candidates can interact with people from diverse backgrounds, demonstrate they have skills outside a lab environment, and are good with their hands for operational tasks.

The best advice is to follow your passion! We need a diverse range of people and skills to make our team successful! So pursue your hobbies and be the best you can be in the areas that interest you!

If you are ready to apply, YOU ARE IN LUCK!  NASA recently announced that they will begin accepting applications for the next class of astronaut candidates December 14, 2015 through mid-February 2016.  

This is your chance!  No matter the odds, if it is your dream you should try, and try, and try again.

Next time on the NASA Village… Map my brain.

Do you want more stories?  Find our NASA Villagers here!

anonymous asked:

okay okay okay L I S T E N: post-the martian au with professor mark watney and astronaut candidate chris beck. chris' mind is 50% on the lesson, 50% on about how fucking hot and brave and smart professor watney is.

A million and one years later, but I’m totally listening. Feel free to tell me more anytime.

The thing is… It’s hard, ok? This becoming an astronaut business. Chris will concede this is sort of a stupid tautology. Interplanetary space travel is hard. Manned interplanetary space is really very hard, and a fleeting fancy for extraterrestrial adventures won’t be enough to get you sent to Mars.

Keep reading

So you want to work at NASA?

An out of this world career or internship might not be as far out of reach as you think. Check out all the ways you can get involved!

If you’re a student…

Our internships are the perfect place to start! We offer paid internships for spring, summer, and fall semesters to U.S. citizens currently attending an accredited university full time. Learn more at:

Seriously considering a job in the Federal civil service? Check out the Pathways Internship Program which allows you to do multiple work tours while you finish school:

If you’re a recent graduate…

If you’re a U.S. citizen who has graduated from an accredited college or university within the past 2 years (or 6 if you have served in the military), then the our Recent Graduates program is just for you. Accepted applicants are placed in a 1 year career development program with the possibility of an additional year, or even granted term or permanent jobs within the agency. Learn more at:

If you’re a professional…

You can search for our job openings any time at Create an account, then use the USAJobs resume builder. Want to make sure your resume maximizes your opportunity for a job at NASA? Check out our Applicant Guide:

You can then search for our job openings here:

If you want to be an astronaut…

Astronaut candidate applications are accepted every few years- including right now! Get yours in before the current application closes on February 18, 2016.

Do you have a bachelor’s degree in a STEM field and 3 years of related professional experience? You might be eligible. Find out more and apply online at:

Make sure to follow us on Tumblr for your regular dose of space:

Ok, real talk

Under the assumption that the Galaxy Garrison is in America, we can say it’s probably been developed from an offshoot of NASA.

In order to be a commander or pilot of a spacecraft, according to NASA’s current qualification requirements, one must:

  • Be 5 ft 2 to 6 ft 2
  • Have 20/20 vision (corrective surgery is taken into consideration, provided one year has passed from the surgery)
  • Have blood pressure that does not exceed 140/90 measured in a sitting position
  • Have a bachelor’s degree in engineering, biological science, physical science or mathematics
  • Have at least 1000 pilot-in-command hours of jet flight

So we can safely say that not only does Shiro have a degree, but most likely Lance and Keith were working towards one. Pidge and Hunk, as mission specialists, would also require degrees in those fields, but they would also require a minimum of three years’ professional experience and an advanced degree (which substitutes the hours of jet flight).


ONE’S PERSONALITY IS SEPARATE FROM ONE’S INTELLIGENCE. Just because Keith is impulsive, Lance is sometimes frivolous and Hunk likes to eat doesn’t mean any of them are idiots. Pidge is not the only intelligent person on this team. And don’t forget that everyone except Shiro is a teenager. They’re allowed to be stupid sometimes.

(This, of course, is working on the assumption that GG has the same rules NASA does.)

A final note re.: Shiro’s age: he could never have been a teenager and been the commander of a space mission. All NASA candidates to date have never been younger than 26 (likely because of the degree and the flight hours). 61% of astronaut candidates have come from the military, which Shiro obviously has. 

Of course, this is also a fictional universe with giant flying robot lions which combine into a huge space samurai with cat hands, there are space elves and reptilians and sentient planets, so we can bend the rules a little. But these are likely the guidelines of how the Garrison worked.

(Also, we know our technology had advanced to allow us to reached Kerberos in mere months, so space travel is obviously much, much more commonplace, perhaps even large-scale commercial, but this is an intensive professional program.

Also, it’s called the Garrison. They liked militarising the kids young, don’t they?)

this love left a permanent mark

pairing: Chris Beck/Mark Watney
fandom: The Martian
rating: PG-13
note: title taken from this love by taylor swift. i love soulmate au’s, they’re my jam tbh, tho apparently i’m incapable of making a soulmate au that isn’t angsty in some way. also i’ll probably (definitely) write more of these in the future, and not just for beckwantey but for the mars trio too :D i hope you guys enjoy! x 

on AO3


Mark Watney was born a Blank.

Less than 10 percent of the world’s populations are born without words. Less than 5 percent of those same Blanks later become Worded, and no one is really sure what causes the discrepancy.

So when Mark’s mother sees her son’s blank skin she despairs.

How will Mark get through his life knowing that he doesn’t have a partner to look forward to? That compared to 90 percent of the world’s population, he’ll never find true love?

The doctor gives her the statistics, how being a Blank in this day in age doesn’t have the negative connotation is did even a few decades ago. How Blanks are still able to find healthy, loving relationships. They’re even able to get married now!

Ms. Watney doesn’t listen to him though; all she can see is the blank skin of her son’s wrists and imagine how his future will be painted as a result of it.


Chris Beck is born with Words on his wrist.

His mother rubs her thumb over the pale skin of her son’s wrist and traces the script with her eyes.

‘So did you get lost too or was that just me?’ is scrawled messily, and she can’t help but wonder what type of person her son’s soulmate will be. How they’ll compliment her son and how the two of them will fit into each other’s life.

What situation they could be in that results in the words printed forevermore on her son’s skin.

She holds her son close as she thinks about the life he has ahead of him, and hopes that whatever happens, his soulmate will be there.

Keep reading

Record Number of Americans Apply to #BeAnAstronaut

On Dec. 14, 2015, we announced that astronaut applications were open on USAJOBS. The window for applications closed on Feb. 18. We’re happy to announce that we have received more than 18,300 applications from excited individuals from around the country, all hoping to join the 2017 astronaut class. This surpasses the more than 6,100 received in 2012 for the most recent astronaut class, and the previous record - 8,000 applicants in 1978. 

So you applied to be an astronaut…now what?

Since the applications closed on Feb. 18, many people are curious to know…what’s next? Let us help you navigate the selection process:

Now that we have received all the applications, we will review them to determine the “Highly Qualified” applicants. This process will take place through summer 2016.

What is a “Highly Qualified” Applicant?

The diversity of experiences is what separates the highly qualified from qualified. Experience that demonstrates good leadership, fellowship and decision making are beneficial.

Between fall 2016 and spring 2017, interviewees will be brought to Johnson Space Center for evaluation. This process will help us determine the finalists, which takes place in spring 2017. 

Finally, in summer 2017, the Astronaut Candidate Class of 2017 is announced! These candidates will report to Johnson Space Center starting in August 2017. 

To view the full astronaut candidate selection process timeline, visit:

*Note that the high volume of applications received, dates in the timeline could be adjusted. 

Why do we need more astronauts?

We are continuing human spaceflight on the International Space Station, which has a continuous crew of six people on board. The Boeing and SpaceX commercial crew spacecraft that will travel to the station both have seats for four astronauts (the current Soyuz spacecraft, on which astronauts travel, only has three). This will add a seventh astronaut to the orbiting laboratory, and enable us to do more science!

How many astronauts will be selected?

The exact number will be determined by mission requirements, but current analysis shows about 8 - 14 astronauts will be needed. The final number will depend on updates to program plans, budgets, etc. 

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Astronaut candidate Eileen Collins during parachute ejection briefing 

(29-31 July 1990) – Eileen M. Collins, a USAF major and a candidate for a pilot astronaut’s position with NASA, listens to a briefing on parachute ejection. The classroom session was part of a three-day survival training course hosted by Vance Air Force Base in Oklahoma. Photo credit: NASA

Dr Joan Higginbotham the second Black Woman to become an astronaut. 

Via Wikipedia:

Joan Elizabeth Higginbotham (born August 3, 1964) is an American engineer and a former NASA astronaut. She flew aboard Space Shuttle Discoverymission STS-116 as a mission specialist.[2]

Higginbotham began her career in 1987 at the Kennedy Space Center (KSC), Florida, as a Payload Electrical Engineer in the Electrical and Telecommunications Systems Division.[2][3] Within six months she became the lead for the Orbiter Experiments (OEX) on OV-102, the Space Shuttle Columbia. She later worked on the Shuttle payload bay reconfiguration for all Shuttle missions and conducted electrical compatibility tests for all payloads flown aboard the Shuttle. She was also tasked by KSC management to undertake several special assignments where she served as the Executive Staff Assistant to the Director of Shuttle Operations and Management, led a team of engineers in performing critical analysis for the Space Shuttle flow in support of a simulation model tool, and worked on an interactive display detailing the Space Shuttle processing procedures at Spaceport USA (Kennedy Space Center’s Visitors Center). Higginbotham then served as backup orbiter project engineer for OV-104, Space Shuttle Atlantis, where she participated in the integration of the orbiter docking station (ODS) into the space shuttle used during Shuttle/Mir docking missions. Two years later, she was promoted to lead orbiter project engineer for OV-102, Space Shuttle Columbia. In this position, she held the technical lead government engineering position in the firing room where she supported and managed the integration of vehicle testing and troubleshooting. She actively participated in 53 space shuttle launches during her 9-year tenure at Kennedy Space Center.

Selected as an astronaut candidate by NASA in April 1996, Higginbotham reported to the Johnson Space Center in August 1996. Since that time, she had been assigned technical duties in the Payloads & Habitability Branch, the Shuttle Avionics & Integration Laboratory (SAIL), the Kennedy Space Center (KSC) Operations (Ops) Support Branch, where she tested various modules of the International Space Station for operability, compatibility, and functionality prior to launch, the Astronaut Office CAPCOM (Capsule Communicator) Branch in the startup and support of numerous space station missions and space shuttle missions, the Robotics Branch, and Lead for the International Space Station Systems Crew Interfaces Section.

Higginbotham logged over 308 hours in space during her mission with the crew of STS-116 where her primary task was to operate the Space Station Remote Manipulator System (SSRMS). Higginbotham took a scarf for the Houston Dynamo on board with her during her mission.[4]

Higginbotham was originally assigned to the crew of STS-126 targeted for launch in September 2008.[5][6] On November 21, 2007, NASA announced a change in the crew manifest, due to Higginbotham’s decision to leave NASA to take a job in the private sector.[7] Donald Pettit replaced Higginbotham for STS-126.[8]

Awards and Honors[edit]

In 2007, Higginbotham received the Adler Planetarium Women in Space Science Award.

  • NASA Exceptional Service Medal
  • Group Award for achievements related to the flight of STS-26 (the first shuttle flight after the Challenger disaster)
  • Commendation of Merit for Service to the Department of Defense Missions
  • Black Rose Award (2007) awarded by the (League of Black Women) for contribution to gender equality

The first official female astronaut candidates, from left to right: Shannon W. Lucid, Margaret Rhea Seddon, Kathryn D. Sullivan, Judith A. Resnik, Anna L. Fisher, and Sally K. Ride . All six women would eventually fly on at least one mission, with Ride being the first in 1983.

via reddit

Psh y’all are talking like I have better than an 0.13% chance of actually being an astronaut candidate.* It’s sweet of you, but I’m not househunting in Houston yet. 

*The last class of astronaut candidates (and they’re not guaranteed to become astronauts, much less fly) were 8 people out of 6100 applicants.