Facts About Astronauts That’ll Surprise You

Outer space is still a mystery to everyone and we always want to discover more about its nature and related aspects. As technology advances, humans are step-by-step closer to the secret of space. Astronauts are the people who are responsible for outer space tasks. There are so many facts about them that we have not known yet. Let’s find out some truths about their work.

Astronauts spend most of their career time for training

To get a job at the space station, astronauts have to go through an extremely rigorous selection and training process. After passing the selection, the candidates are still not considered as official astronauts. They must continue to participate in a training course for 2 years, which will test them from the basic to the advanced.

After graduating from this course, those who are assigned with outer space missions will become full-time astronauts, the others will be substituted ones. As for the astronauts selected to carry on missions, they will have to join in other training sessions for some more years to be able to officially “fly” into space.   

Astronauts spend most of their career time for training
Astronauts spend most of their career time for training

Besides having to undergo many years of training, the conditions for being selected as an astronaut are also very high. Candidates must have at least a master’s degree in one of the fields such as science, technology, mathematics, etc. They also need to have certificates in medicine, piloting, aviation management and geographic studies.

Astronauts will be taller in space

The zero-gravity environment will cause everything, including the astronauts, to float like balloons in the compartments of a spacecraft. Not only that, the spine will expand because the discs of the spine are not compressed as in a gravity environment. This inadvertently makes the astronauts 5 to 7 cm taller.

Astronauts will be taller in space
Astronauts will be taller in space

Scientists at NASA once did a study based on tracking the height of a male astronaut working in space with his twin brother working on Earth. The results were truly surprising. After returning from his space mission, this male astronaut is 5 cm taller than his brother, although both have gone through the process of growing in height.

The first creature flying into space was a dog

It sounds very strange, but it’s actually true. The first creature to experience the sensation of flying into space was not a human. It is a Russian dog named Laika.

Laika - the first “astronauts”
Laika – the first “astronauts”

Laika was a dog without an owner and lived on the streets of Moscow. It was raised by scientists and trained for a short time before being sent to space orbit. This dog later became a monument of sacrifice for science. The Russians have erected a memorial near a military research station on Petrovsko – Razumovsky Boulevard in Moscow, where Laika’s flight was prepared, in memory of this lovely dog.

Although Laika died just a few hours after being launched into space, humans have proven that living things can completely survive in zero gravity. This opened the way for the development of astronomy and space science.