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Your Chance to be an Astronaut

CmdrTaco posted more than 6 years ago | from the sniffle-what-about-me dept.

Space 302

codewarrior78411 writes "NASA posted a hiring notice for new astronauts Tuesday, on usajobs.com, seeking for the first time in almost 30 years men and women to fly aboard spacecraft other than the shuttle. The agency is seeking 10 to 15 new faces for three to six-month missions aboard the international space station." Requirements include 'Must be a U.S. citizen between 5-foot-2 and 6-foot-3 in height (to squeeze into Russia's three-passenger Soyuz capsule)' 'At least a bachelor's degree in engineering, a biological or physical science, or mathematics' 'three years of relevant professional experience' and most interestingly 'Vision correctable to 20/20. For the first time, the space agency will consider applicants who have undergone successful refractive eye surgery.'

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302 comments

(this joke will appear a thousand times) (5, Funny)

pzs (857406) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666631)

Must be willing to wear a diaper on long drives?

Peter

Re:(this joke will appear a thousand times) (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20666725)

I nominate George W Bush. We can leave him out there.

Wearing the diaper on his head counts right?

Re:(this joke will appear a thousand times) (5, Funny)

eniac42 (1144799) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666735)

(sigh).. Must be able to convert feet to meters..

Re:(this joke will appear a thousand times) (2, Funny)

rbarreira (836272) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666747)

Also, must be able to drink a lot of alcohol?

Re:(this joke will not appear a thousand times) (1)

Nexus7 (2919) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667099)

Did they forget some requirements?

Flammability?

need another seven astronauts (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20666633)

lawl challenger jews did wtc

Damn it! (1)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666653)

I knew I should have taken a mathematics/computer science double major. *sigh*

OTOH, it could only be said marginally as to whether my vision is correctable to 20/20 or not, so I might've failed the vision test.

Anyway, $60K (which is probably what you would get with no astronaut experience) isn't much of a salary these days.

Re:Damn it! (2)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666677)

I would pay myself to do it.
Hell, I think I would give an arm and a leg willingly to do it (lower weight, more chance I can get a seat)

Re:Damn it! (4, Interesting)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666685)

And just what constitutes 'relevant professional experience.'? Most NASA astronauts retire from NASA. Where are these experienced astronauts going to come from? Former Soviet Bloc countries?

Re:Damn it! (4, Funny)

click2005 (921437) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666785)

I've watched every episode of Star Trek, Stargate and Lost in Space. I'm sure that qualifies as experience.

Re:Damn it! (1)

PlatyPaul (690601) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667187)

Geek factor 9: ENGAGE!

Re:Damn it! (3, Funny)

trolltalk.com (1108067) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667309)

"I've watched every episode of Star Trek, Stargate and Lost in Space. I'm sure that qualifies as experience."

Stargate takes away points. You need stuff with real rocket science, so you'll know what someone means when they say "They've gone plaid!"

Re:Damn it! (3, Interesting)

dougmc (70836) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666965)

And just what constitutes 'relevant professional experience.'?
Well, just look at what most astronauts over the years did before becoming astronauts. I seem to recall a lot of military pilots doing it, for example.

Though my guess is that they're less looking for `Top Gun' types of guys and more for the brainy scientist guys -- but guys who are physically fit too. And so relevant professional experience would probably mean doing brainy scientist sorts of things. I imagine the military still has a lot of people like this ...

Though in general, if you want a job, apply -- even if you don't fit all their qualifications exactly. I doubt this is any different -- though I imagine that they won't be hiring many people who merely have bachelors degrees. I'd expect them to pick PhDs instead. Especially if I'm right about the sort of people they want.

Re:Damn it! (2, Interesting)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666817)

Economists refer to the additional amount you must pay someone to take on unpleasant work, compared to work requiring similar skills, as the "compensating differential". For astronauts, that compensating differential is negative, because people find it thrilling to work as an astronaut and demand less than they ordinarily would.

Of course, that should mean that under US tax law, the amount people would pay to be an astronaut counts as imputed income on top of the 60k salary, and therefore should be taxed, but whatever.

(Btw, I think someone commented a while ago that NASA used to have a warning that said something like, "If you want to be an astronaut for the money, don't bother. If you just want a lot of money, go work for a NASA contractor.")

Re:Damn it! (1)

Volante3192 (953645) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666995)

Of course, that should mean that under US tax law, the amount people would pay to be an astronaut counts as imputed income on top of the 60k salary, and therefore should be taxed, but whatever.

Sadly it doesn't work in the other direction.

Re:Damn it! (1)

jnik (1733) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667025)

If you just want a lot of money, go work for a NASA contractor.
I wish!

Re:Damn it! (1)

Smidge204 (605297) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667289)

Of course, that should mean that under US tax law, the amount people would pay to be an astronaut counts as imputed income on top of the 60k salary, and therefore should be taxed, but whatever.

So what if you volunteer to do something for free because you just want to do it? Isn't what you're saying tantamout to putting a tax on having fun?
=Smidge=

OMG (1)

Shinatosh (1143969) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666873)

Well... I never thought I would say such a thing: Wish i was US citizen now! :(

Re:Damn it! (4, Informative)

Billosaur (927319) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666907)

I don't think a Psych degree counts... so I'm out of the running; I won't even belabor the fact that I'm not in any kind of shape for it. And no, $60K isn't a lot considering the work an astronaut does. Most astronauts spend their lives trying to make money other ways, with mixed results. The Mercury 7 were blessed in the beginning by having their exclusive contract with Life magazine that supplemented their income, and due to their fame, they received more than their fair share of perks. I don't think astronauts today have it quite so good, which is a shame.

Re:Damn it! (2, Insightful)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667341)

If you are interested, I wouldn't discount any degree. Especially one in Psychology. With all this talk of extended missions, having an onboard psychologist might not be too far fetched.

Re:Damn it! (1)

RockoTDF (1042780) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667357)

Well if you have an MS or a PhD is an area like physio, neuroscience, or Sensation and Perception I bet that would count as a biological science.

Re:Damn it! (1)

trolltalk.com (1108067) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667261)

Forget the "correctible" bit if you're thinking laser ablation of the cornea - its not worth it. The results aren't permanent, and as your eyes age, you'll end up needing glasses or contacts anyway, so even if you got hired, by the time they find a mission for you, you will no longer be able to qualify anyway ...

This has GOT to be the stupidest thing they've done in a ... oops, this is NASA ... scratch that last bit.

vision? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20666657)

20/20 correctable?...

So they should.

If the astronauts experience sufficient G's to blow out their surgically corrected eyeballs then they're dead anyway.

Re:vision? (1)

cayenne8 (626475) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666705)

One requirement they left out....

NO diaper fetishists....

height discrimination! (2, Funny)

syrinx (106469) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666667)

Must be a U.S. citizen between 5-foot-2 and 6-foot-3 in height

As a 6'4" person (that's 0.384 rods for those of you not used to measuring in feet!), I think I am going to sue for height discrimination.

First I find out that government safety regulations in cars only apply to people 6'3" and under, and now this...

Re:height discrimination! (3, Informative)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666761)

It's not discrimination because you need to be under a certain height in order to fit through certain passage ways and into certain rooms. Since that requirement is objectively tied to be ability to perform the job, it cannot count as discrimination to place that height maximum as a requirement.

This is just like how it's absolutely impossible to do any kind of engineering-related task whatsoever without a 4-year degree from an accredited engineering program, and therefore employers are 100% justified in making that a requirement for engineering jobs and why it's not discrimination and is legal under the ADA and relevant employment law. [/can't say with straight face]

Tiny spaces (1)

PlatyPaul (690601) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667327)

Given that you can freely rotate in zero-gravity, this would require that a room have no diagonal length of at least 190.5 cm. Are space station rooms really that small?

Re:height discrimination! (1)

Chapter80 (926879) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667339)

Actually it IS discrimination, it's just not illegal discrimination.
From Dictionary.com:

treatment or consideration of, or making a distinction in favor of or against, a person or thing based on the group, class, or category to which that person or thing belongs rather than on individual merit
It's completely legal, and expected, that you discriminate in the hiring process. I try to discriminate against stupid people, for example.

Re:height discrimination! (1)

Capt James McCarthy (860294) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666791)

"As a 6'4" person (that's 0.384 rods for those of you not used to measuring in feet!), I think I am going to sue for height discrimination."

I'm sorry, but anyone taller then 6'3" is considered a statistical abnormality within the current human race ; therefore cannot be factored into the Earth's exit strategy. That and it's a "Ha Ha" from the shorter folks for whom you've all been making fun of.

Re:height discrimination! (1)

BiloxiGeek (872377) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666867)

Go for it, but since they likely don't have a space suit that will properly fit, you get to fly in only regular clothes. Don't worry though, pressure leaks hardly ever happen.

Re:height discrimination! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20666887)

I am 6'6" perhaps we can seek class action status for the suit. I have correctable 20/20 vision and an engineering degree but I am denied based upon height!

Re:height discrimination! (2, Funny)

sgt scrub (869860) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666909)

I TOTALLY Agree! I'm a short, fat, balding, middle age, heavy drinker and smoker AND they won't even take ME! I mean WTF!

Re:height discrimination! (1)

ConceptJunkie (24823) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667019)

I would imagine there are also weight limits. I'm 6' 4" too, but at about 280 I would probably lose on that fact as well. Would a computer science degree count?

I qualify (2, Funny)

ILuvRamen (1026668) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666681)

I'm 5'11", a US citizen, have a degree in PC and web programming and another in web deisng (hey they need some IT staff up there, come on), my vision is perfect, and I'll show up to the tryouts in a diaper and carrying a knife. They'll have to hire me!

Re:I qualify (3, Insightful)

Aardpig (622459) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666723)

No, I'm sorry, they wanted a degree in engineering, math or science.

Re:I qualify (1)

Silver Sloth (770927) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666875)

A degree in web deisng? Did you demonstrate a good attention to detail and presentation?

Re:I qualify (1)

AndersOSU (873247) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667403)

Sorry, I first read that:

A degree in web deisng? Did you demonstrate a good attendance and presentation?

Which might be more accurate

One-way or two-way missions? (3, Funny)

nmg196 (184961) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666687)

If the missions are one-way, I think my boss would be an excellent candidate. I'll even fill out his application for him.

Re:One-way or two-way missions? (4, Interesting)

Sparr0 (451780) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666751)

An interesting philosophical question that I have posed in the past... Would you take a one-way trip to Mars? You get to be the first person to ever set foot on the red planet, your family is generously rewarded, and you take a suicide pill N months after landing when your food supplies run out.

No way (1)

thegnu (557446) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666807)

I haven't even gotten around to impregnating some beezies. And the rest of my family's doing OK on the money. I think I'll let someone else kill him(her)self

Re:One-way or two-way missions? (1)

mdm-adph (1030332) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666879)

An interesting question indeed. Maybe if I was old and grey and had already lived my life to the fullest, but otherwise, no.

Re:One-way or two-way missions? (5, Interesting)

IceCreamGuy (904648) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666885)

I have actually specifically told my friends when it's come up in conversation that if, somehow, I was approached by NASA and they told me that I could got to Mars, that I would never be coming back, that I would die there, and that I would never see my friends and family again, and I had to leave right now with no time to say goodbye or get any of my things, I would absolutely do it, no questions asked. People have told me that's a stupid thing to think, or that I'm a jerk because I would leave everyone I know so quickly, but that's just the way it is. If I could go to outer space, my life's meaning would change so drastically that it wouldn't even be worth it to think in those terms to me, and I think to my friends and family as well. -Julius

Re:One-way or two-way missions? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20667199)

Would you like to go to mars?

Right now? You probably won't be coming back i'm afraid, but you might.

You would? Excellent! Step this way sir.

Yes sir. Up the ladder.

Now climb into the cannon.

Re:One-way or two-way missions? (2, Insightful)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666889)

What would be the point. To be the first person on Mars? I don't see that the rush to get a person on Mars needs to be so great that we consider a suicide trip. Mars isn't going anywhere in the next 50 years. I'd wager that anything we can find there, we could still find in 1000 years.

It is one thing to consider a suicide mission that has some lifesaving purpose, but throwing lives away for a feather in your cap isn't worth it. It is definately not worth it when simple restraint and patience will result in an even more successful outcome:

A manned mission to Mars and a return trip.

Criminals (1)

PlatyPaul (690601) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666939)

To further challenge your morality, consider the prospect of selecting or requesting convicted criminals (in particular, death-row inmates). At what point does it start to seem wrong? Does their crime matter?

Re:Criminals (1)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667029)

At what point does it start to seem wrong?

Right at the point where you hit submit and I read the comment. ;)

Re:One-way or two-way missions? (3, Insightful)

Penguinisto (415985) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666941)

A guaranteed suicide mission would be worthless on a personal level (unless I had, say, terminal cancer or somesuch, then I'd certainly be game), but more importantly, it would be worthless on a political level. You don't send folks up to die, because the whole point of the exercise is two-fold:

1) science / exploration

2) getting ordinary folks to think "hey - that could be me/my kids up there someday! Cool!"

The reason the Space Race was so popular in the '50s and '60s wasn't so much the 'Red Menace', but ordinary folks (kids chief among them) to fantasize about being spacemen and spacewomen. SciFi was a HUGE factor in having folks dream of space as a destination in the first place.

Sure, the odds of, say, terraforming Mars in my lifetime is pretty much nil, but the ideas of adventure and exploration? Especially in a world that pretty much has had human eyes hovering over nearly every square hectare of it by now? It's a pretty damned cool idea.

/P

Re:One-way or two-way missions? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20667055)

Indeed!

The word of the day is:
11425eb06d0c4a7fb10484b1b394b30d

Re:One-way or two-way missions? (1)

trolltalk.com (1108067) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667397)

"You don't send folks up to die, because the whole point of the exercise is two-fold:

1) science / exploration

2) getting ordinary folks to think "hey - that could be me/my kids up there someday! Cool!"

I know parents who would gladly send their adult kids on a one-way trip to Mars just to get them the f**k out of the house sometime before they die.

Re:One-way or two-way missions? (2, Interesting)

Eponymous Bastard (1143615) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667119)

and you take a suicide pill N months after landing when your food supplies run out.

On those terms, no. If on the other hand you were to say: "and you take a suicide pill N months after landing if your food supplies run out." I'd do it. In a heartbeat. (Ok, I'd evaluate the mission first to see if that "if" is reasonable).

Trying to establish a permanent colony on Mars would be worth it, I think. Being part of the pioneering group, facing challenges, working on something important and influential. Hell Yes, I'd try it. Going just so some government can claim that "they" were the first to put a man on mars, no.

Having to take a suicide pill if all of our agricultural work fails, it should be a small risk compared to a micrometeorite strike, solar flare, orbital insertion failure, or once in mars, structural failure of the shelter, medical problems with regolith/mars dust, etc. I wouldn't like to depend on continued shipments from earth either

The hardest part would be the lag. No beer and no internet make Eponymous something something...

Re:One-way or two-way missions? (1)

lems1 (163074) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667125)

Instead of taking the "suicide pill" why not take a mini-greenhouse with you and plant your own stuff in Mars! You will need to find water though, but you should be alright until the next visitors from Earth come to pick you up (40 years or so later)...

just a thought... LOL

Re:One-way or two-way missions? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20667297)

lollorlololroflomgwtfbbq
does it not bother you being such a retard? I suppose ignorance is bliss.

No guaranteed two way missio (1)

mykepredko (40154) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667185)

I thought the original question was "would you go even if we couldn't guarantee that we could get you back" with the situation being that you would be sent there to settle (which implies raising a family there) with base expectation that you would be there for years and with the understanding tht NASA may not be able to develop the technology for a return flight.

When put in this context it is similar to that of a pioneer going west to settle and grow communities.

If this were the case, then I'd go in a heartbeat,

myke

I wouldn't... (3, Funny)

tryfan (235825) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666701)

leave my job at Stargate Command for this!

Re:I wouldn't... (1)

FrivolousPig (602133) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666919)

"Ha-ha-ha, command center ... It's a basement," - McClane.

Here's my chance (4, Funny)

pak9rabid (1011935) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666707)

Here's my chance to show up that smug Inanimate Carbon Rod.

Wo-ho! (1)

HangingChad (677530) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666715)

Geeeeeeeks in spaaaaaaaaccceeeee.

Arrrrrrrgh (1)

everphilski (877346) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667123)

Me be the first space pirate, dread pirate Everphilski. Arrrrgh.

So why the degree req'mt? (-1, Flamebait)

Penguinisto (415985) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666767)

Why not instead start hiring ironworkers and folks who actually know WTF they're doing in high-up construction techniques? They're still (according to accounts) building the ISS, right?

Well, at least things have begun moving in the right direction (that is, folks can have a shot at going to space without having to be a test pilot or a PhD first).

/P

Re:So why the degree req'mt? (5, Funny)

mcmonkey (96054) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667011)

Why not instead start hiring ironworkers and folks who actually know WTF they're doing in high-up construction techniques? They're still (according to accounts) building the ISS, right?

Maybe because this is the real-world NASA and not a Ben Afflec movie?

Re:So why the degree req'mt? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20667043)

Why not instead start hiring ironworkers and folks who actually know WTF they're doing in high-up construction techniques? They're still (according to accounts) building the ISS, right?

The typical new astronaut will wait 8-10 years for a first spaceflight, by which time the ISS construction should be complete.

I'm actually surprised NASA is hiring, since they now have one fewer shuttle since 2003 and thus more astronauts than missions. I didn't read TFA but they're probably manning up for Project Constellation. Of course, there's no guarantee that a new hire will ever fly, especially if the program gets cut back or cancelled (google for Manned Orbital Laboratory for another famous such program -- only half of the 14 astronauts hired for MOL were able to transfer to the shuttle program).

Some good advice I've heard for prospective astronauts is to go work for Burt Rutan or Richard Branson, and give NASA a pass.

Re:So why the degree req'mt? (1)

everphilski (877346) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667215)

The typical new astronaut will wait 8-10 years for a first spaceflight

I'm actually surprised NASA is hiring, since they now have one fewer shuttle since 2003

Shuttles go out of commission in 2010. Most likely a good number of astronauts are up to leave the service due to age/desire and/or the delay between now and constellation...

Some good advice I've heard for prospective astronauts is to go work for Burt Rutan or Richard Branson, and give NASA a pass.

Rutan sold Scaled to Northrop Grumman. While he's still a senior manager, one must wonder for how long. Burt isn't exactly young anymore. And being an astronaut for SS2 is basically the equivalent of a glorified airline pilot / space waitress, for 10 minutes at a time. Not denigrating it but suborbital and orbital are two different ballparks. It'll be nice when someone like Armadillo or Masten actually makes orbit accessible.

Arrr!

What about Color Blindess? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20666781)

Since I was a young boy I had always wanted to be an Astronaut and/or Fighter Pilot but because of my inability to distinguish between some hues of colors (violets and shades of red to green) I was told by the Navy recruiters that I could not be a pilot and/or astronaut. I had 20/20 vision at the time (since deteriorated... I blame my computing career on that).

Anyways, it would be nice if NASA allowed Color Blind people to also fly and become astronauts.

Re:What about Color Blindess? (2, Funny)

Hanners1979 (959741) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666947)

Anyways, it would be nice if NASA allowed Color Blind people to also fly and become astronauts.

It would be nice until they ask you to press the green 'launch' button, and you press the red 'self-destruct' button instead. ;)

(P.S. I'm colour-blind myself, so I figure I'm allowed to make bad jokes like that)

Re:What about Color Blindess? (1)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667159)

Most people don't actually understand that Color blindness is very rare, and that what people refer to is more often, a color recognition deficiency.

It was a pain in the ass for me at the Academy, most people would look at me as if I had the plague when they found out I was 'Color Blind'.

"Why did you even join the Air Force?".

People seem to forget that missiles don't need pilots.

"Mission control.. (2, Funny)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667329)

..I regret to inform you that our manned expedition to the Red Planet Mars has encountered a slight difficulty.."

Re:What about Color Blindess? (1)

faloi (738831) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667273)

The trouble is that, in panic situations, people can't always be relied on to read (or read correctly) all the knobs and dials that go along with piloting. Muscle memory will help out some, but it might only get you in the general area. Sometimes you need other visual cues to get it right. Sure, fully configurable lights that would let the operator select whichever color scheme is easiest to distinguish would be nice, but a lot of the equipment you'll be dealing with isn't exactly modern. And getting something new to pass mil-spec and get retrofitted is probably enough of a budget and paperwork headache that people avoid it.

Curious about the vision requirement. (2, Insightful)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666795)

I'm a bit curious about the vision requirement. While I understand the need for good vision, what is the need for 20/20? The real work of flying the craft is usually left up to computers, and I'm not sure of what tasks couldn't be performed with adequate vision. I suppose one could argue about the docking operations with the ISS...

Of course I may be coming at this from the wrong angle. Vision that isn't correctable to 20/20 is probably pretty bad to start.

Re:Curious about the vision requirement. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20666969)

Think about contact lenses in an emergency. Glasses in space probably present their own challenges. Glasses in military flying present a challenge. Overcomable, but it's part of the field of vision that I loose.

Re:Curious about the vision requirement. (1)

Eponymous Bastard (1143615) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667269)

People's vision also tends to degrade over time. They are talking of 1 or 2 years of selection, plus 2 years of training before you even start. If you already need glasses, how is it going to be when you actually fly?

Second, glasses and contacts would be bad during takeoff (doing 6Gs I think?). Also in zero-G, putting on and removing contacts might be a problem.

Besides, if there is an emergency while people are sleeping and you need to evacuate or act quickly, you really don't want to wait for people to find their glasses or put on their contacts.

Maybe once they start hiring hundreds of people, most of whom don't have mission critical-jobs, their standards might be lowered, but in the meantime I don't see why risk it.

Pilot requirements :( (1)

HexRei (515117) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666813)

"Pilot applicants must have at 1,000 hours at the controls of a fighter jet or in command of a larger jet aircraft. "

In Freespace 2? But... But...

Re:Pilot requirements :( (1)

(H)elix1 (231155) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667255)

"Pilot applicants must have at 1,000 hours at the controls of a fighter jet or in command of a larger jet aircraft. "

A thousand hours of flight time is a pretty typical amount before the insurance companies are willing to let you fly commercial aircraft - seems to be the amount of pilot time you need before they consider you a trusted aviator. You end up seeing a lot of pilots get their 'comercial' certification around 250 hours of flight time and do flight instruction (and work baggage lines) until they hit the magic 100-1200 hour window (depending on demand) where they can actually fly some of the more serious commercial aircraft. Seems to hold true for 'larger jet aircraft' to crop dusting.

Salary (3, Funny)

dlhm (739554) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666815)

The Salary kind of sucks for being strapped to a bomb....

Re:Salary (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20666997)

RTFA!

fly aboard spacecraft other than the shuttle

Re:Salary (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20667417)

The Salary kind of sucks for being strapped to a bomb....

Do you want them to include 72 virgins as part of the deal?

What? No computer science degrees? (1)

mdm-adph (1030332) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666835)

There goes my chance. Or does it count as a "physical science?"

Re:What? No computer science degrees? (1)

PlatyPaul (690601) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667015)

Sorry, but the physical sciences [wikipedia.org] are limited to:
  • Astronomy
  • Chemistry
  • Geology
  • Hydrology
  • Meteorology
  • Oceanography
  • Soil Science
  • Physics
Computer Science (or at least a number of its subfields) may be classified as an applied science [wikipedia.org] , especially as it applies to Information Science [wikipedia.org] .

Wouldn't you be more valuable on the ground, anyway?

Re:What? No computer science degrees? (1)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667093)

It's not like their control computers ever seize up.

On a serious note, there isn't much that requires computer science skills up there. All the labs and simulators are on the ground.

Re:What? No computer science degrees? (1)

PlatyPaul (690601) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667157)

I totally agree.

Computer By the way, Computer Scientists who are interested in getting involved with NASA should apply for an internship or co-op with the JPL [nasa.gov] .

Re:What? No computer science degrees? (1)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667279)

Good link. My degree was in computer engineering. What confuses people is when I tell them that I can't stand high-level programming. I was always more interested in the electrons than the bits.

Wrong country! (1)

Bromskloss (750445) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666903)

Doh! Born in the wrong country for this one. :-(

Re:Wrong country! (1)

PlatyPaul (690601) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667053)

You could still become a naturalized citizen [freeadvice.com] ....

Re:Wrong country! (1)

Bromskloss (750445) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667193)

You could still become a naturalized citizen....

Yes, you are right. It would take quite a few years, though. Getting a green card takes apparently in itself a long time.

Re:Wrong country! (1)

PlatyPaul (690601) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667257)

Not necessarily [about.com] .

Where's my penis shaped ship? (2, Funny)

monkeyboythom (796957) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666917)

Great. I have this sneaky suspicion that this cattle call will end up as network reality show contest.

They could call it... (1)

CatsupBoy (825578) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667249)

Who wants to be a MILLIONA.... er... 60 thousand-doller-ionaire!

Re: Network Show (1)

apt142 (574425) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667287)

There's an idea with some potential [despair.com] .

I wonder... (1)

equimarginal (1057334) | more than 6 years ago | (#20666945)

Do you think they could overlook the "three years of relevant experience" requirement? I'm an excellent oral and written communicator!

Re:I wonder... (1)

everphilski (877346) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667253)

Reference? Why, look at my posts on /. :)

You have been warned (1)

Dystopian Rebel (714995) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667023)

All the "space rendezvous" videos and images have been faked by the same company that faked the moon landing. They are good with Blender and the GIMP. Damned good.

The truth is out there!

White men can't jump (0, Flamebait)

null_session (137073) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667059)

Your mother is an astronaut.

obUCB (1)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667105)

Filthy astronauts, driving their moon-buggies through our neighborhoods at all hours of the night, playing that theme from "2001" real loud on their cosmo-blasters!

What about the tilt-a-whirl requirement? (1)

faloi (738831) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667161)

I can meet all the other goals outlined, but no way would I be willing to go the distance on the tilt-a-whirl (whirl and hurl?). I prefer my insides stay inside.

Re:What about the tilt-a-whirl requirement? (1)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667229)

Ever go to the IMAX movie in the Air and Space musuem where they show how you can get disoriented? Sit you in a chair with a white polkadot umbrella surrounding your field of vision and then they spin it. With the IMAX screen I always got the feeling that my chair was spinning around.

my big chance (1)

bakamaki (1148765) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667183)

Finally I get to drive a moon buggy and pound Tang. It's going to suck when I'm no longer able to eat solid food but those are the breaks. I'm tired of people being racist against astronauts!

Sorry /.'ers (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20667203)

From the requirements:

* Must be able to leave mothers basement for longer than the cook time of a Hot Pocket(TM)

Suggestions (4, Informative)

Overzeetop (214511) | more than 6 years ago | (#20667313)

Get a PhD
Get your private pilots license
Get certified in Scuba
Run 10 miles a day, be in good physical shape
Make sure you are comfortable speaking in public, and are fairly good at it
Have diverse interests

Now you've met the real minimum requirements...go have fun!

FFWIW, I considered being an as-can, and know others who were attempting to get selected. Getting into the NBA is a bit easier than getting into to be an astronaut, statistically speaking.

Great Reality Show (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20667331)

This sounds like a great premise for a reality show. With the sad state of affairs across the board (educationally and due to our nation's preoccupation with the "real lives" of everyone else), I'd be surprised if we didn't see "Who Wants to be an Astronaut" soon.
 
Think of the hookups and ensuing hilarity (or conflict) in that crowd of alpha geeks.

I'm in! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20667393)

...oh wait. Is the space station between here and the kitchen or the bathroom?

Nevermind.
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