The Russian space agency’s latest open call for astronauts for Russia’s first moon mission has been met enthusiastically, with nearly 400 applications filed for the expedition.
Though low by comparison with NASA’s applications rates of over 15,000 in 2016/17’s recruitment drive, the applications for Russia’s first moon mission surpassed the 300 hopefuls who applied for an earlier open call in 2012.
In an interview with Izvestia, the head of the Yuri Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Centre Yuri Lonchakov said that the country’s space team currently consists of 31 trained astronauts, but that they are looking to add several young members for future missions. He also noticed that the requirements this year have been significantly stricter than ever before: only people younger than 35 with a university degree and over three years of work experience can apply. Initially the open call advertised that the six to eight selected candidates will be in line to work on the International Space Station and participate in Russia’s first moon mission before 2040.
Lonchakov also noted that so far three women have already passed the first stage of selection.
For those still hoping to take part in the mission to the moon, there’s time to apply. The deadline has been moved to December to allow for more young talent to mail in their CVs. Check out the very specific requirements here to see if you qualify.