Chinais getting ready to launch a manned rocket to dock with their unmanned space station in orbit. Not only is that a major accomplishment, but they might have a female in the 3-person crew. I’m a little confused on why the female taikonaut is going to be chosen last minute though. That doesn’t make a lot of sense to me. I know, from my internships at JSC, that astronauts go through at least 1 if not 2 years of training, for one mission. If the astronauts have a space walk, they spend 10 hours in the Neutral Buoyancy Laboratory (NBL) for every hour of the space walk. Everything is rigorously planned and rehearsed and practiced, well in advance, so why would someone pick the crew last minute? Perhaps everyone has already been training together and it’s a matter of which person will fill that third slot, or maybe that’s just how the Chinese have chosen to do things. I’m not in the minds of the decision makers, so I can’t say what they’re thinking of, but I can say that to me, it makes no sense.
However, that one of the crew may be female is wonderful news. I hope it remains true, and thatChinasends a female taikonaut up on this ground-breaking mission. What do you think? Do you have an opinion on why the decision may be so last minute? Or perhaps you have something to say aboutChina’s space program. Let us discuss!