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Astronauts Job Description, Duties & Salary

Their number was reduced when three pairs were selected from the pool in December 2004. Chinese space officials picked the final pair shortly before the flight.

NASA is supporting the International Space Station and is overseeing the development of the Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle, the Space Launch System and Commercial Crew vehicles. The agency is also responsible for the Launch Services Program which provides oversight of launch operations and countdown management for uncrewed NASA launches. NASA's ongoing investigations include in-depth surveys of Mars (Mars 2020 and InSight) and Saturn and studies of the Earth and the Sun. Other active spacecraft missions are Juno for Jupiter, New Horizons (for Jupiter, Pluto, and beyond), and Dawn for the asteroid belt. NASA continued to support in situ exploration beyond the asteroid belt, including Pioneer and Voyager traverses into the unexplored trans-Pluto region, and Gas Giant orbiters Galileo (1989–2003), Cassini (1997–2017), and Juno (2011–).

Six cameras were designed to take thousands of high-altitude photographs in the final twenty-minute period before crashing on the lunar surface. Camera resolution was 1,132 scan lines, far higher than the 525 lines found in a typical U.S. 1964 home television. While Ranger 6 suffered a failure of this camera system and returned no photographs despite an otherwise successful flight, the subsequent Ranger 7 mission to Mare Cognitum was a complete success. From that vantage point, scientists could make direct measurements of the magnetosphere over a period of many months while engineers perfected new methods to routinely track and communicate with spacecraft over such large distances. Such practice was deemed vital to be assured of capturing high-bandwidth television transmissions from the Moon during a one-shot fifteen-minute time window in subsequent Block II and Block III lunar descents.

Today, astronauts at the International Space Station go to the bathroom into a little plate-sized toilet hole, and a fan vacuum-sucks their excrement away.

Astronaut description

Instead, the 3.1 metres (10 ft) Ranger Block II mother ship carried a 200-scan-line television camera which was to capture images during the free-fall descent to the lunar surface. The camera was designed to transmit a picture every 10 seconds.[15] Seconds before impact, at 5 and 0.6 kilometres (3.11 and 0.37 mi) above the lunar surface, the Ranger mother ships took picture (which may be viewed here).

He gave Zhai a Chinese flag that he had waved at a camera. Jing Haipeng, the third crew member, watched over the spacecraft from inside the re-entry module. Chinese astronauts on the Moon in 2017 could set up an astronomical telescope and measure the abundance of helium-3, which could be used back on Earth as a non-polluting fuel source. Astronauts who make it through the physical demands of space travel must also grapple with isolation, fear and separation from loved ones. It’s not easy to live in close quarters with virtual strangers for three to six months or more.

Astronaut description

The second passed by the Moon at a distance of more than 60,000 kilometres (37,000 mi), twice as far as planned and too far away to trigger either of the on-board scientific instruments, yet still becoming the first U.S. spacecraft to reach a solar orbit. Willy Ley wrote in 1957 that a rocket to the Moon "could be built later this year if somebody can be found to sign some papers".[12] On 4 October 1957, the Soviet Union launched Sputnik 1 as the first artificial satellite to orbit the Earth and so initiated the Space Race. This perception was reinforced by a string of subsequent rapid-fire Soviet space achievements. In 1959, the R-7 rocket was used to launch the first escape from Earth's gravity into a solar orbit, the first crash impact onto the surface of the Moon, and the first photography of the never-before-seen far side of the Moon. These were the Luna 1, Luna 2, and Luna 3 spacecraft.

Astronaut description

Can you see the mirror on the moon?

Astronauts like to have fun, too. That is why flight planners on Earth schedule time each day for astronauts to relax, exercise and have some fun. Station crew members even manage to have fun while working. Experiments in space sometimes involve ordinary toys and how microgravity affects them.

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The mission control center is known as Beijing Aerospace Command and Control Centre. Engineering labs for assembling and testing the manned capsules have been built at sites around Beijing. After assembly, spacecraft and rockets travel by train west to Jiuquan in the northwestern Gansu Province.

If you think you can qualify to be an astronaut, you have stiff competition. More than 18,300 people applied to join the ranks of NASA astronauts for its 2017 program, far more than what the space agency usually receives. Astronauts work either as pilots who fly spacecraft or as mission specialists who conduct experiments. Regardless of their position, astronauts need certain qualities to survive both NASA’s selection process and space travel itself. Gus Grissom ( ) - Gus Grissom was the second American to travel to space aboard the Liberty Bell 7.

Transition from direct ascent landings to lunar orbit operations

Astronaut description

Can astronauts have tattoos?

NASA currently has no rules against astronauts having visible tattoos. According to Brooklynn Covington who has already researched this: "Although no astronaut to date has had any tattoos during their employment with NASA. NASA currently has no rules against astronauts having visible tattoos.

Astronaut description

JSC is the lead NASA center for activities regarding the International Space Station and also houses the NASA Astronaut Corps that selects, trains, and provides astronauts as crew members for US and international space missions. NASA undertook a feasibility study in 2012 and developed the Asteroid Redirect Mission as an uncrewed mission to move a boulder-sized near-Earth asteroid (or boulder-sized chunk of a larger asteroid) into lunar orbit. The mission would demonstrate ion thruster technology, and develop techniques that could be used for planetary defense against an asteroid collision, as well as cargo transport to Mars in support of a future human mission. The Moon-orbiting boulder might then later be visited by astronauts. The Asteroid Redirect Mission was cancelled in 2017 as part of the FY2018 NASA budget, the first one under President Donald Trump.

How do you use the bathroom in space?

A new recycling system turns pee into drinking water and energy. DRINK UP Astronauts drink water made from recycled urine and other wastewater aboard the International Space Station. A new system would turn pee into drinking water and produce energy, a step toward long-term space travel.

  • They launched capsules carrying one, two and three astronauts throughout the 1960s and later.
  • This focus was not shared by the U.S., who chose instead to bypass the stepping stone of a crewed circumlunar loop mission and never developed a separate spacecraft for this purpose.
  • Foremost among these are mastering the demands of re-entering the Earth's atmosphere upon returning from the Moon.
  • Japan's lunar orbiter Hiten impacted the Moon's surface on 10 April 1993.
  • They also conduct experiments with the spacecraft itself to develop new concepts in design, engineering, and the navigation of a vehicle outside the Earth's atmosphere.
  • The first of these reached an altitude of only around 100,000 kilometres (62,000 mi), serendipitously gathering data that established the presence of the Van Allen radiation belts before reentering Earth's atmosphere.

US Centennial of Flight Commission, NACA Archived February 20, 2014, at the Wayback Machine. The descend stage of the LM stayed on the Moon after landing while the ascend stage brought the two astronauts back to the CSM and then fell back to the Moon.

Astronaut description


While the Space Shuttle program was still suspended after the loss of Columbia, President George W. Bush announced the Vision for Space Exploration including the retirement of the Space Shuttle after completing the International Space Station. The crewed exploration goals prompted NASA's Constellation program.

What do astronauts do in space for fun?

The rover mission Chang'e 3 soft-landed on 14 December 2013, as did its successor, Chang'e 4, on 3 January 2019. All crewed and uncrewed soft landings had taken place on the near side of the Moon, until 3 January 2019 when the Chinese Chang'e 4 spacecraft made the first landing on the far side of the Moon.

Astronaut description

Chinese President Hu Jintao was seen on TV watching the launch from the Beijing Aerospace Command and Control Center. Later, on October 15, he talked with the orbiting astronauts by radio from the Beijing center. Shenzhou 10, then, would ferry people up to live and work in the space station. All three spacecraft – Shenzhou 8, 9 and 10 – would be launched within the same month.

The intense efforts devoted in the 1960s to achieving first an uncrewed and then ultimately a human Moon landing become easier to understand in the political context of its historical era. In the 1950s, tensions mounted between the two ideologically opposed superpowers of the United States and the Soviet Union that had emerged as victors in the conflict, particularly after the development by both countries of the hydrogen bomb. The view through the window of the Lunar Module Orion shortly after Apollo 16's landing. To get outside the box of thinking on the pre supposition that any human, NASA included, has gotten out of Earth Orbit, requires a significant amount of resistance to get past the confirmation bias.

Astronaut description

Many objects and artifacts from the program are on display at various locations throughout the world, notably at the Smithsonian's Air and Space Museums. By this time flights of the third generation U.S. Far more capable than the Zond, the Apollo spacecraft had the necessary rocket power to slip into and out of lunar orbit and to make course adjustments required for a safe reentry during the return to Earth.

They're the only places where humanity has achieved one of its oldest dreams and "touched the stars". In addition, the two sides of the ISS disinfect their water two different ways. Since 1981, NASA has been using iodine to disinfect water, a process that requires the water to be filtered since too much iodine can cause thyroid issues. Russia has been using silver to disinfect its water since the launch of the Mir station by the Soviet Union in 1986. He couldn't go out, but the medical team thought the liquid could short-circuit his body monitoring cables.

Can I be an astronaut?

To tackle our diverse missions, NASA hires 20 different types of engineers; the most common fields are aerospace, general, and computer engineers. We place an emphasis on engineers who can take a holistic, systems view to solve complex challenges.

Space Policy Directive 1

Astronaut description

Chinese officials had hoped to launch a manned craft in time for the October th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic. However, the National Day parade on October 1 displayed models of rockets, including a Chinese version of a U.S. space shuttle. Back in 1970, China became the fifth nation in the world to launch an artificial moon to orbit above Earth. That satellite, Mao-1, rode atop a Long March-1 rocket from Jiuquan. China's activity for more than a decade had suggested the Asian nation was developing a manned spaceflight capability, but the government had not confirmed it.

I encourage you to drop by the ACT-REACT QuickMap site, which features a zoomable lunar map of LRO photos that will practically take you down to the lunar surface. Click the "paper stack" icon and uncheckSunlitRegionto see a fully-illuminated Moon, no matter the current phase. Checking the Nomenclature box will bring up the names of craters, rills and many other features.

John F. Kennedy Space Center (KSC) is one of the best-known NASA facilities. It has been the launch site for every U.S. human space flight from 1968 through 2011. Although human flights are currently on pause, KSC continues to manage and operate uncrewed rocket launch facilities for America's civilian space program from three pads at the adjoining Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. NASA also operates a short-line railroad at KSC and uses special aircraft.

The g-loading on astronauts during the resulting deceleration can be at the limits of human endurance even during a nominal reentry. Slight variations in the vehicle flight path and reentry angle during a return from the Moon can easily result in fatal levels of deceleration force. – 222 km x 219 km x 19 deg orbit, 130 m period, 521-day science missionLuna 10 became the first spacecraft to orbit the Moon on 3 April 1966.

The cuffs were what John Glenn used on his Mercury Atlas 6 mission — the first time a human went into orbit for NASA. The flight lasted 4 hours and 55 minutes.

Astronaut description

He ensured continuing funding, shielding space spending from the 1963 tax cut, but diverting money from other NASA scientific projects. These diversions dismayed NASA's leader, James E. Webb, who perceived the need for NASA's support from the scientific community.