back to article Latest NASA ASTRONAUT class is HALF FEMALE

NASA has picked four women and four men for its latest batch of trainee astronauts - and that's the highest percentage of female space rookies ever selected for one class. International Space Station International Space Station ... potential new digs for plucky cosmic wanderers The students - one of whom is the first woman …


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  1. Ian 62

    Careers 'Advisor'

    Hmm, I'm right in the middle of their age group and I'm firmly stuck on Earth. Dealing with the oh so exciting world of change management and upgrade roll outs.

    Where was 'Astronaut' on the list from my Careers Advisor?

    1. Bakunin

      Re: Careers 'Advisor'

      I learnt some time ago that reading the bio's of astronauts is a sure fire way to make yourself feel like a depressed underachiever .

      Well done and good luck to them. They've certainly worked for it.

    2. hplasm

      Re: Careers 'Advisor'

      I tried that at school- the careers advisor looked blank for a while, then advised me to 'go to college'.

    3. Don Jefe

      Re: Careers 'Advisor'

      Right! My advisor never mentioned the f'ing International Space University for my post grad studies. I got Stevens Institute of Technology which I was happy with until just now.

      That could have changed my whole young adult life. You know, hanging out at the pub in France and a girl asks where you're going to school; could've said "International Space University baby [cheesy pickup line here]". Instead I'm hanging out in a NYC pub, girl asks the same question; I have to say "Hoboken, f'ing Hoboken, wanna come back to my place and count insane hobos?" That rarely went any where.

      1. Cubical Drone

        Re: Careers 'Advisor'

        Rarely? You mean it actually worked a time or two?

        1. Don Jefe

          Re: Careers 'Advisor'

          Well, going home meant going to New Jersey so they knew how it was. No point in bullshitting :)

          1. Cubical Drone

            Re: Careers 'Advisor'

            Ah, Jersey, nuf said.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Astronauts used to be the pick of the bunch, the right stuff, now women have got in on the act standards will slip and it will be equality this and equality that.

      When the final selection is made, expect at least one of the women to cry foul and claim sex discrimination.

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        >Astronauts used to be the pick of the bunch, the right stuff,

        50% of them are still fighter pilots.

        So if the ISS ever needs to skim along a trench into the death star before firing into it's unshielded exhaust port.....

        That's why space is cooler than high energy physics. If CERN only picked special forces commandos to work on the LHC it would be as cool as the ISS - and produce as much science

    5. asdf

      Re: Careers 'Advisor'

      >Where was 'Astronaut' on the list from my Careers Advisor?

      What's the point in being an Astronaut for a Space Program unable to do manned flights? Might as well be a Cosmonaut as there is probably better odds of actually getting into space.

    6. asdf

      Re: Careers 'Advisor'

      >Where was 'Astronaut' on the list from my Careers Advisor?

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Hardly surprising. You still need someone to make the Tea and Coffee even in space....

    1. LPF
      Thumb Up


      I knowI shouldn't laugh at that , but I did lol

    2. LarsG

      AC 12:20

      Watch your back my friend, never ever joke about equality on here, there are too many wishy washy liberal lefty sandal wearing bearded tree huggers on here.

      Rest assured that you will only encounter downvotes between the hours of 10.30am-3.30pm because that's when the Politically Correct Public Servants are at their desks surfing the web.

      1. Bronny

        Re: AC 12:20

        And the women, don't forget the women!

    3. This post has been deleted by its author

    4. Francis Boyle

      Hipster misogyny

      Cutting-edge stuff, folks.

  3. Anomalous Cowshed

    The old and the new

    Old world order:

    US - Astronaut

    RU - Cosmonaut

    CN - Taikonaut

    UK - Fish & Chips

    New world order:

    US - Astrobabes

    NK - Norkonaut

    IR - Taranaut

    UK - Kebab

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The old and the new

      There was actually a British Space program in the early 1950's, they even built a rocket but a left wing labour Government cancelled it, just like all the other good stuff. Chuck Yeager wouldn't have been the first to break the sound barrier if it hadn't been for the Labour Party.

      1. Stevie

        Re: The old and the new

        "There was actually a British Space program in the early 1950's..."

        Well, as someone who was around at the time and who was such a life-long space nut he eagerly snapped up any and all reports of the British Space Effort (including increasingly rare film of the events as they happened), I'd like to point out that my memory is that 100% of the launches either lit up the sky and anything else unfortunate enough to be inside the radius of the fireball or lifted off triumphantly only to retask themselves as missions to the Earth's Core a few seconds later.

        Woomera, home to the most expensive lawn darts the world has seen.

        Also: Unnecessary apostrophe and too many commas, all in the wrong places.

        2/10 See Me.

    2. Yag

      Re: The old and the new

      You forgot the FR "spationaut" in the list. It was probably a diplomatic attempt for getting on both US and USSR ships. Yes, French do it both ways.

  4. Anonymous Coward

    Could it be?

    All chasing after Bruce Willis perhaps, imagine the disappointment when they finally realize that it was all a movie and not in the least based on the real thing ;-)

  5. izntmac

    Congratulations to the New Astronauts

    Congratulations to the new astronauts and hopefully they have "The Right Stuff." The most disappointing part was the line about NASA flying US made spacecrafts, designed by US companies, and shot form US soil. NASA should still be flying its own spacecraft and should have had a successor to the Space Shuttle by now. Congres and the President kept changing the funding and priorities over the years so now the US has to fly on Russian or Private Spacecraft. NASA needs to develop its own again. To bad to lose US Space leadership.

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: Congratulations to the New Astronauts

      > NASA needs to develop its own again. To bad to lose US Space leadership.

      They are trying:

      Step 1, hyperinflation in Germany

      Step 2, rise of a far right party

      Step 3, World war

      Step 4, develop new weapons

      Step 5, pinch enemy scientists that developed those weapons.

    2. Don Jefe

      Re: Congratulations to the New Astronauts @izntmac

      It is spacecraft, not spacecrafts. The ESA guy said spacecrafts a few weeks ago and afterward we all learned that if it is referring to a vehicle for space travel, singular or plural, it is a spacecraft. Whereas knitting or scrapbooking in space are spacecrafts.

  6. Alister

    However, the agency is hoping to get onto an asteroid by the 2020s, and there’s always the ISS as an option to actually get into the cosmos.

    I'm not sure you can really count the ISS as "into the cosmos", that's like standing on the doorstep of your house and saying you've traveled the world.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @Alister 13:39

      "that's like standing on the doorstep of your house and saying you've traveled the world."

      There are a few people here that'd probably apply to ...

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    holds an undergraduate degree

    surely that is a bachelors degree Sir. You are an undergraduate until you get the degree, then become a graduate. The degree itself is a bachelors degree.

    1. Don Jefe

      Re: holds an undergraduate degree

      Nope. It's an Undergraduate Degree. A Bachelors is a simple degree that means you can apply to Graduate level studies and degrees. Once you have your Bachelors, you're still an Undergraduate, you're just no longer an Undergraduate student.

  8. Tom 38

    There should be more women in space. Since the average woman weigh significantly less than the average man, it makes much more logical sense to send a female astronaut than a male, unless there are tasks that physically a fit woman cannot do. They will also use less food and oxygen than your typical "Right Stuff" candidate.

    1. Anonymous Coward


      Because one week every month, nothing gets done, and the chances of someone getting thrown out of the airlock go up significantly.

    2. Nuke

      @ Tom 38

      Don't know about your neck of the woods (India? China maybe?) but around here (UK) most women in their 30's look like they weigh more than most men. You did say average. About the USA, Bill Bryson once made the comment that around their late 20's, US women "go up like self-inflating life rafts".

      But surely what matters is efficiency, power-to-weight ratio, and strength-to-weight ratio. Generally men are ahead in these areas.

  9. JaimieV

    What a depressingly dumbass set of 'joke' comments

    Do try and keep the sexist bigotry down folks, all it does is shows you for the mental underachiever you really are.

    The rest of you with proper comments - keep it up! I'm with Bakunin, the things these people have already done impress the hell out of me, let alone what they'll get to do over the next twenty years.

    1. Nuke

      @ JaimieV - Re: What a depressingly dumbass set of 'joke' comments

      Wrote :- "Do try and keep the sexist bigotry down folks, all it does is shows you for the mental underachiever you really are."

      Thanks, Devil's Advocate here, but I am very comfortable with my level of mental achievement so I don't mind your insult at all.

      I would comment that of all the men and women I have known, quite a few of the men would be potential candidates for spaceflight, but absolutely NONE of the women would either be capable or even wish to be involved even in their wildest dreams. It is beyond me where they even FIND such women.

      One thing all those women say is that women are invariably bitchy to each other when confined in a group; does that sound like in a space craft to you? OTOH, men tend to be affable to each other (and to women), even if it takes an effort, unless they are complete (and easily identifiable) bar stewards.

      Are the recruiters leaning over backwards to recruit women to be PC? Perhaps the women I have known are a self-selecting group? Or is this an effect of the upper tail of the statistical distribution?

    2. Don Jefe

      Re: What a depressingly dumbass set of 'joke' comments

      A subset of women have a terrible sense of humor. It's that subset that ruins it for the other women, the bulk of who are normal people who won't run crying to start a lawsuit or file complaints everytime someone makes a dongle joke.

      It's perfectly 'OK' for a woman to comment on how she can't get 'her man'' to do anything while the match is on but say something about a sandwich and spite estrogen fills the air.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Can't we just say "good" rather than the tedious sexist "jokes".

    And people wonder why there are so few women in it...

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