A4H's very own Bruce Davis was among the select few invited to attend the Presidential Space Summit held at the NASA Kennedy Space Center on April 15, 2010. At the event, President Obama outlined his new strategy for human spaceflight, which includes the expanded support for commercial space transportation systems - the same systems that will also enable the nascent suborbital and eventually orbital science research community.
Bruce, who is pictured here with Norm Augustine, shared his impressions and photos from the event on his website spacedavis.com.
A4H co-founder Veronica Ann Zabala-Aliberto was on The Space Show yesterday. During the third segment of the show, she and David Livingston talked about Astronauts4Hire. The callers asked some very good questions that have prompted us to start working on a FAQ page for our website. Stay tuned for that addition in the near future.
Astronauts4Hire Launches, Selects Initial Candidates for Commercial Scientist Astronauts
Astronauts4Hire, a new collaborative effort to support and develop a pool of qualified, commercial scientist astronauts announces today the launch of its website (www.astronauts4hire.org) and selection of 11 initial astronaut candidates. The candidates, selected from industry and academia, bring with them a wide variety of experience and expertise, representing a diverse set of disciplines. Pooling their collective resources and talents, and leveraging their common passion and commitment for space exploration, the candidates have created Astronauts4Hire to support the emerging suborbital research industry. On a day that marks the anniversaries of the first human to orbit the Earth and the maiden flight of the Space Shuttle, this announcement marks a push towards a new era of more accessible commercial space research and exploration.
Astronauts4Hire is soliciting sponsors and donors to enable the candidates to undergo spaceflight training and obtain other pertinent experience that will increase their competitiveness as astronauts-for-hire by those private firms conducting scientific research on suborbital platforms. The initial target is to obtain $40,000 USD, which will be used to allow the initial astronaut candidates to take part in the three-day Suborbital Scientist Training Program at the NASTAR Center in Pennsylvania. The course includes medical screening, classroom preparation, centrifuge and hypobaric chamber training.
Additional astronaut candidates and training course targets will be identified as the effort moves forward. Astronauts4Hire intends to become the one-stop shop for those seeking qualified, experienced professionals to conduct microgravity and other research on suborbital, and later orbital platforms. The website will eventually evolve to allow anyone who has the dream of becoming a commercial astronaut to create an online profile listing their experience and training, allowing them to see how they rank against other prospective astronauts. The site will become an interactive tool, providing a forum for discussion and collaboration.
The Astronauts4Hire website is now live. Please stay tuned for exciting updates as we progress towards becoming some of the first scientist-astronauts ready to fly as commercial payload specialists on suborbital flights. Learn more about our plans on the About A4H page. If you like what you see, consider donating to become a sponsor!
Bigelow Aerospace has already become the first company to advertise for private astronauts, and Blue Origin has already announced the first scientific payloads for its suborbital vehicle. By the time the new breed of private space vehicles are ready, we plan to be qualified to handle jobs like these.
We'll leave you with a recent NPR story that mentions the rising demand for "Astronauts for Hire" like us. To learn more, listen to yesterday's extended Space Show interview with Dr. Alan Stern: