back to article Ever dream of being an astronaut? Now’s your chance. NASA wants new people for the Moon and Mars

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 …

  1. Imhotep

    Age Discrimination

    They're going to discriminate against my 68 year old carcass?

    Yeah, I would too.

  2. sanmigueelbeer

    Do you have a Masters science degree?

    Do you have a Masters science degree?

    Why? This isn't rocket science.

  3. AndrewV

    Do they still have height restrictions?

    1. mr.K

      Kinda, less than 100km doesn't qualify

    2. My other car WAS an IAV Stryker

      Re: Height

      How about mass?

      I tick all the listed boxes, but I'm sure they'd like my personal collection of biomatter to be reduced 25% to 33% before wasting rocket fuel (or even jet fuel) moving me around.

      1. Spherical Cow

        Re: Height

        While checking for "overall good health" they probably look at your BMI (yes it's a stupid measurement but it still gets used a lot).

  4. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

    Not all good...

    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.)

    1. Dr Who

      Re: Not all good...

      If it's Boeing I'm not going.

      1. Martin Gregorie

        Re: Not all good...

        Don't worry - it'll be fine provided it hasn't got 737SLS written on it.

    2. sanmigueelbeer

      Re: Not all good...

      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.

      The Russians aren't an issue. China is developing their own.

      Care to ride in a Chinese rocket? You'll be in for a bang!

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    So NASA is discriminating, all non-US humans...

    1. Aladdin Sane

      Re: Discrimination

      How about US non-humans?

  6. Roger Kynaston Silver badge

    Failed on most counts

    Not a left pondian

    Too old

    Not an MsC

    imperfect eyesight

    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.

    1. Imhotep

      Re: Failed on most counts

      I was hoping to qualify as ballast, but apparently that is not a thing anymore.

  7. tiggity Silver badge

    Not applying

    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.

    1. Sam Haine

      Re: Not applying

      Recruiting older volunteers for a one-way trip to Mars would make sense, but the Americans probably wouldn't do it because of the bad publicity. The Chinese might go for it though.

  8. -bat.

    Remember when ESA did this?

    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 ?

    1. Sam Haine

      Re: Remember when ESA did this?

      How far did you get? Were there tests?

  9. Paradroid

    So close

    Was thrilled to see even at my age I am (only just) within the acceptable age range to apply. Then I read the bit about US citizenship. Damn.

  10. wjake

    The term is "Steely-eyed missle-man" Or, "Steely-eyed missle-ma'am"

    Rocket man is either Elton Jojn or that punk in N. Korea!

  11. Sweeper

    Too Old, Too Foreign and a Medical write off

    Rats, far too old, wrong nationalities (neither of mine are US) and a type 1 diabetic. Guess I am out. Otherwise I would be perfect.

  12. Aladdin Sane

    I might have to watch The Right Stuff tonight. It's that or Space Camp.

  13. Doctor Huh?

    The Problem...

    The best-case scenario is that you are chosen for the program and you have to relocate to... Houston.

    So once again, television has lied to me. Astronauts don't get to live in Cocoa Beach, FL. They probably don't even get their own Jeannie anymore.

    1. Winkypop Silver badge

      Re: The Problem...

      Nor a sweet 60's land yacht convertible or Corvette.

  14. RM Myers

    Too Old For ISS and Moon

    But I'm good to go for Mars (assuming my calculations are correct, i.e., 687 earth days per Mars year)!!

  15. John 110
    Thumb Up

    I'm pretty old...

    ...but I've had my appendix out, will that do instead of all those pesky discriminations?

  16. 89724102172714182892114I7551670349743096734346773478647892349863592355648544996312855148587659264921

    Given the vast expense of fuel & other resources, I always thought the idea of using paraplegics in space had legs

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I fail on EVERY criteria*

    That's OK, I'm not into pooping in a bag in zero G.

    * except the gender part

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I wanted to be an astronaut since watching the moon landing as a child.

    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.

  19. Duffy Moon

    Three years too old and haven't got the correct passport. Their loss.

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