Every year on Career Day, classrooms are filled with little ones who exclaim with glee that they want to be astronauts when they grow up. Before NASA astronauts sat on ships and waited to take off into space, they had the same dream.
Former NASA astronaut and International Space Station (ISS) commander, Col. I had pictures of everything from space shuttles to galaxies on my walls.”
Becoming an astronaut is one of the top five vocational aspirations of children in the United States and the United Kingdom, and the number one dream of children in China. According to one study.
NASA astronaut, ISS commander, research engineer and Ph.D. Leroy Chiao was also a kid with a dream before embarking on three Space Shuttle flights and commanding Expedition 10. .
“I was eight years old when Apollo 11 landed on the moon,” Zhao told ZDNET. “Then I went out and looked at the moon and realized that about 250,000 miles away these two astronauts were preparing to take their first steps on the moon. what you want to do.'”
After years of training, going into orbit was a life-changing experience for both astronauts.
“Earth was more beautiful and impressive than I imagined,” says Wirths. “I thought I knew. I thought you were there, your planet from outer space.”
The experience of looking out the window and seeing the Earth from space for the first time also affected Chao.
“When I realized I was in space, it was a much more emotional moment than I expected. I dreamed of it since I was little, and now I am here. I am here.” says. Chao.
If the experience sounds great to you, you may wonder how you can become an astronaut.You may think that space is a potential workplace. If so, let’s see how to get there.
How do astronauts prepare for their time in space?
Millions of children may dream of space travel one day, but only a few dedicate space travel to their careers.
Astronaut candidates must complete training at the Astronaut Office at the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas. This training alone takes about two years, According to NASA.
Training can be very exciting and rewarding for astronaut cadets as it gives them first exposure to what it takes to make their lifelong dreams come true.
“When I showed up at NASA, it was a lot of fun just to attend a class on flying rockets,” says Virts.
Chiao also found training to be a great experience.
“Meeting new people was exciting. We were all starting this together,” says Chiao. “We attended classes together, attended both lecture classes to learn about the space shuttle system and the upcoming space station, and went on excursions together to various NASA stations.”
However, after the initial training, there is additional training specific to mission assignments that astronauts need to complete. These training sessions can be filled with intense tasks that are both mentally and physically taxing.
Training for Chao’s first mission involved regular two-week trips to other parts of the world for about a year. In addition to managing constant jet lag and training sessions, astronauts had to study and work in their spare time.
“It’s pretty intense,” Chao says. “So when you’re ready to fly, it’s a little useless, but of course it doesn’t take away from the thrill of actually getting into space on board.”
In addition to training sessions, actual missions in space require you to be away from home for extended periods of time. Some missions he completes in as little as two weeks, while others take nearly a year.
2021, NASA Astronaut Mark Vande Hay returned to Earth after spending 355 days in spaceVirts’ last flight alone took a staggering 200 days.
In addition to time away from home, there are potential health risks associated with going to space. 2022 survey Spaceflight puts astronauts at increased risk of mutations that may increase their chances of developing heart disease and cancer in their lifetime.
“Beyond low-Earth orbit, cosmic radiation puts astronauts at significant risk of radiation sickness and may increase lifetime risk of cancer, central nervous system effects, and degenerative diseases.” NASA says.
Virts knows the risks. “It’s part of the deal because we’re receiving radiation in space that doesn’t exist on Earth.”
What does it take to become an astronaut?
NASA’s first requirement is to be a US citizen. If he ticks that mark, the next step is to get his master’s degree in STEM from an accredited institution (check NASA-approved degrees first). The final requirement is a minimum of two years of relevant professional experience or at least 1,000 of his pilot hours in command in a jet aircraft. According to NASA.
All of the above requirements are minimum requirements and are of course not sufficient to guarantee a spot. Thousands of other people dream of becoming astronauts even if they have all the above qualifications You will have to fight with Therefore, you should try to exceed expectations.
12,000 people applied for the 2021 astronaut cadet class, and only 10 were selected. According to NASASo what are some career choices you can make to increase your chances of being selected?
A common path for many astronauts is to fly jets as a fighter pilot before going into space.
When Virts was pursuing his dream of becoming an astronaut, he read: correct one, A book containing the story of the first astronaut selected for NASA’s Mercury program. After realizing those men were fighter pilots, test pilots, and eventually astronauts, he followed the same path.
“Flying is the most important thing you can do,” Bartz says. “You just get a private pilot license. If you’re in the military, a test pilot, or a fighter pilot, that’s the best way to train to become an astronaut. Please get your pilot’s license.”
Chao started out mostly as a fighter pilot, joining the Air Force ROTC as a sophomore at UC Berkeley. However, before he enlisted in the Air Force, a physical examination revealed that his left eye was no longer 20/20, so he could not commit.
He chose a different path and pursued academics instead. After graduating from Berkeley with a degree in chemical engineering, Chiao attended the University of California, Santa Barbara, where he earned his master’s and doctoral degrees. in chemical engineering.
Have a PhD, although the minimum requirement to apply is a master’s degree. It can be an important way to make yourself stand out.
“We have 12,000 applications and we need a way. [make it to the top] 500, and Ph.D. It’s an easy way to do it,” says Virts.
Of course, it’s important to choose a career that aligns with your ultimate goal of becoming an astronaut. However, it is also important to be realistic about the odds. Choose a career that makes you happy, even if it doesn’t.
Prior to becoming an astronaut, Chiao enjoyed a technical career in engineering and Virts enjoyed a career in the Air Force flying F-16s.
“If you put all your hopes into being picked and never get picked and you hate what you’re doing, well, you’re just in a bad situation,” Chao says. You need to pursue something worthwhile at the university, and that will also qualify you to apply.”
Make sure your application stands out
Candidates may have career and education requirements, but that doesn’t mean they’re stepping into the position. Many applicants will likely have good grades from reputable colleges, have flying experience, and have multiple degrees on their resumes. So how do you stand out?
The first thing is to include something that sets you apart and shows how balanced you are.
“For me, I had been an exchange student at the French Air Force Academy, and I spoke French as a minor. I think I was chosen because of my foreign language skills,” Virts said. increase.
In addition to the skills you have, interesting life experiences are worth sharing. Because they may be enough to set you apart from other applicants and elevate your application to the next round.
“My last job before I retired a few years ago was handling these applications, but they’re all the same,” says Virts. “She remembers this woman was a race car mechanic, and I was like, ‘Wow, that’s funny.'”
“Being an astronaut is about doing operational things,” adds Virts, explaining why a specialized background like race car mechanic can add value. “Instead of sitting and thinking about equations and writing them on the blackboard, you’re doing something.”
Another part of the application worth paying attention to is references. Think about who knows you best.
“What really sets candidates apart from each other is what other people have to say about them,” says Chao. , is what other people think of you.
It may be tempting to choose the smartest person you know as your referrer, but if that person can’t really give the interviewer a glimpse of who you are, then you should skip that section. You’d better stay away.Blank.
“Don’t just list celebrities who really don’t know you,” adds Chiao. “Maybe you took a Nobel Prize-winning class and got an A, but what a Nobel Prize-winner says about you is, ‘Oh, well, you took my class and got an A. It’s just that.”
If you’re still interested in becoming an astronaut after reading this, you’re in luck: the space industry is busier than everOpportunities for space travel are growing every day, either in collaboration with NASA and other space agencies around the world, or as part of commercial ventures.
“If you want to go to space, now is the perfect time,” says Virts.
https://www.zdnet.com/article/want-to-go-into-space-two-astronauts-explain-how-they-made-the-grade/#ftag=RSSbaffb68 do you want to go to space? Describe how two astronauts improved their grades