ESA Astronaut Selection Proceeds with Psychological Exams

Arnaud Beck, director of clinical research at MEDES, a health subsidiary of CNES. (Credits: MEDES)

PARIS (ESA PR) — The recruitment of the next ESA astronauts continues. Phase 2 began with the psychotechnical tests and will continue until the end of May with the psychological assessments. 404 French men and women are still in the race.

22,523 Europeans had applied last year to become a member of the European Astronaut Corps. A 1st selection on file selected 1,361, including 250 French and 154 French women, who therefore began phase 2 at the start of the year. And that’s where the serious stuff begins. 

“Phase 2 is divided into 2 stages ,” explains Arnaud Beck, director of clinical research at MEDES, the health subsidiary of CNES, and in charge of organizing part of the tests. The 1st (called phase 2.1) takes place in Hamburg, it involves psycho technical and cognitive tests : memorization, mental calculation… There is also an exercise which takes place in front of a control screen: the candidates must manage several parameters simultaneously, using different joysticks and controllers. They are also assessed on their level of English. This stage, which ends in early March, should see around 400 candidates access phase 2.2, which began on 01/31 in Cologne, at the European Astronaut Center (EAC).

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KBR Selected as Primary Provider of Space Medicine Support to European Space Agency

HOUSTON, Jan. 31, 2022 (KBR PR) – KBR (NYSE: KBR) was selected to continue providing high-end astronaut medical support services for the European Space Agency’s (ESA’s) European Astronaut Centre (EAC) Space Medicine Office in Cologne, Germany.

Under the terms of the recompete contract, KBR will be the primary provider of space medicine support services to ESA, which is introducing a new service model. This work is scheduled to be performed over a three-and-a-half-year period.

A partner to ESA for more than 20 years, KBR’s major activities include astronaut medical care, engineering support, rehabilitation, fitness, project management, healthcare administration, psychology and behavioral health, nutrition, radiation, education coordination, and operational research.

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Cargo Dragon Docks with International Space Station

Credit: NASA

HOUSTON (NASA PR) — While the International Space Station was traveling about 260 miles over the Western Australia, a SpaceX Dragon cargo spacecraft autonomously docked to the forward-facing port of the orbiting laboratory’s Harmony module at 10:30 a.m. EDT, Monday, Aug. 30. Flight Engineers Shane Kimbrough and Megan McArthur of NASA monitored operations.

Among the science experiments Dragon is delivering to the space station are:

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ESA Busy Reviewing 23,000 Applications for Astronaut Jobs

Credit: ESA

PARIS (ESA PR) — Astronaut hopefuls are being asked for their patience as ESA processes over 23 000 applications to its Astronaut and Astronaut (with a disability) vacancies. This number far exceeds the Agency’s most optimistic forecasts.

Head of space medicine at ESA’s European Astronaut Centre (EAC) Guillaume Weerts is part of the team leading the astronaut selection. He says the number of applications is a positive indication of the level of interest in space activities in Europe, but it will take some time to work through.

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CNES to Provide Training, Equipment for India’s Gaganyaan Human Spaceflight Program

Capsule descending under parachute (Credit: ISRO)

BANGALORE, India (CNES PR) — On Thursday April 15, 2020, as part of the trip to India of Jean-Yves Le Drian, Minister of Europe and Foreign Affairs, CNES and ISRO, the Indian space agency, announced in Bangalore, at the human spaceflight center, a new space cooperation agreement. France will participate in the Indian Gaganyaan manned space flight program.

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Samantha Cristoforetti will Fly to the International Space Station in 2022

European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti working on the T-Cell Activation in Aging experiment in the Columbus Module. (Credits: NASA)

ESA astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti has been assigned a second space mission and will fly to the International Space Station in spring 2022.

PARIS (ESA PR) — In a press briefing today, Samantha Cristoforetti, ESA Director General Josef Aschbacher, ESA Director of Human and Robotic Exploration David Parker and President of the Italian space agency ASI Giorgio Saccoccia announced Samantha will travel to the Station in spring 2022, following ESA astronaut Matthias Maurer.

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ESA Astronaut Matthias Mauer Assigned to SpaceX Crew-3 Mission

ESA astronaut Matthias Maurer (Credit: ESA)

PARIS (ESA PR) — ESA astronaut Matthias Maurer has been assigned to his first flight to the International Space Station during a meeting of representatives from the US, Russian, Japanese, Canadian and European space agencies at the beginning of December.

Matthias’ mission is expected to begin in autumn 2021. He will be the second ESA astronaut to fly under NASA’s Commercial Crew Programme and is expected to be launched from the agency’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, USA, as part of SpaceX Crew-3, along with NASA astronauts Raja Chari and Thomas H. Marshburn.

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Ready, Set, Go for COVID-conscious Astronaut Training

ESA astronaut Matthias Maurer trains Space Station robotic operations with ESA-developed virtual reality teaching system JIVE at the European Astronaut Centre (EAC) in Cologne, Germany. To ensure a COVID-19-conscious astronaut training, Matthias donned personal protective equipment. (Credit: ESA)

COLOGNE, Germany (ESA PR) — After nearly two months of confinement, it is not only school students who are progressively returning to class. ESA astronaut Matthias Maurer also returned to training at ESA’s European Astronaut Centre (EAC), starting with a slightly unusual robotics refresher.

At the end of April, Matthias donned personal protective equipment and maintained 2 m distance from instructors to participate in a training module that prepares astronauts to operate robotic devices like the Canadarm2 on the International Space Station.

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3D Printing Helps Essential Workers Face COVID-19

3D printed parts on a 3D printer at ESA’s European Astronaut Centre (EAC) in Cologne, Germany. (Credit: ESA, CC BY-SA 3.0 IGO)

COLOGNE, Germany (ESA PR) — Knowledge and 3D printers at ESA’s European Astronaut Centre (EAC) in Cologne, Germany are being put to work in the fight against COVID-19 as part of a joint initiative to keep essential workers safe.

Usually used to print special items for astronaut training and test ideas for future spaceflight as part of Spaceship EAC, two open-source 3D printers are proving an ideal tool for producing components for face shields as part of a local MakerVsVirus initiative. Under this initiative, EAC contributes its parts to those supplied by a wider hub of makers. The completed face shields are then delivered to hospitals in need.

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Building a Toolkit for the Moon Underwater

Testing ESA prototypes for geological sampling tools underwater. (Credit ESA/NASA-H.Stevenin)

COLOGNE, Germany (ESA PR) — As the world celebrates 50 years since the first lunar landing, the team at ESA’s astronaut centre is looking to the future of lunar exploration. This includes developing prototypes for rock and soil sampling equipment to be used on the Moon.

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Canadian Astronauts Train in Europe

CSA astronauts Jeremy Hansen and David Saint-Jacques in the Columbus simulator with ESA instructor Frank Lautenschlaeger, on January 18, 2016. (Credit: ESA/Sabine Grothues)
CSA astronauts Jeremy Hansen and David Saint-Jacques in the Columbus simulator with ESA instructor Frank Lautenschlaeger, on January 18, 2016. (Credit: ESA/Sabine Grothues)

COLOGNE, Germany (CSA PR) — The International Space Station (ISS) is a busy laboratory for an assortment of science experiments and technology demonstrations. At any one time, the Station’s rotating crew of six astronauts are responsible for the success of an ever-changing lineup of 200 experiments, whose investigators hail from more than 30 countries.

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