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Astronaut selection: stage one complete

on 19 January 2022

The next stage of ESA’s astronaut selection is underway, with 1391 applicants invited to a full day of testing at a facility in Europe.

These candidates were selected from over 23.000 Europeans who put themselves forward for the astronaut and astronaut (with a physical disability) positions when ESA issued the call in March 2021. Due to a high volume and caliber of applications, it has taken some time to review and respond to all applicants and ESA would once again like to express its gratitude to all those who applied.

For the first time in 11 years, the European Space Agency (ESA) launched a new call for new astronauts. 199 men and 56 women from Romania applied for ESA’s campaign, out of a total 22589 applicants. For this recruiting campaign, ESA also decided to accept a number of applicants with a certain degree of physical disability. Ten Romanians, namely eight men and two women, applied for the vacancy for this category.

The stages of the application are::

  • Screening: several screening rounds will be conducted on the basis of all documents submitted with the application form as well as the screening questionnaire completed as part of the application. In addition, applications for the selection of candidates with physical disabilities will undergo a medical screening on the basis of the eligible impairments. [completed]

  • Test Phase 1: cognitive, technical, motor coordination and personality testing.

  • Test Phase 2: psychometric testing, group and individual exercises and practical tests.

  • Test Phase 3: applicants’ physical and mental abilities are measured against international medical standards for spaceflight missions.

  • Interview Round 1: panel interview in which applicants are tested on technical and behavioural competencies (educational qualifications are verified and criminal record checks are carried out).

  • Interview Round 2: final stage of the selection process. Applicants who make it through to this stage can expect an interview with the ESA Director General, after which a final decision will be made.

More details here.

Image credit:ESA