How much does a NASA astronaut earn per year? -
October 2, 2022
How much does a NASA astronaut earn per year?

How much does a NASA astronaut earn per year?

How much does a NASA astronaut earn per year?

How much does a NASA astronaut earn per year? The salary of an astronaut is determined by the GS salary scale which can reach 115,000 euros per year

It may be that in the not-so-distant future, visiting space will become an everyday thing, since there are companies that are specializing in trips to the stratosphere, such as SpaceX, owned by billionaire Elon Musk. Without a doubt, a very novel fact, but one that many astronauts have already carried out for a high salary that many want to know about.

It is a very exciting and demanding job that is also very well paid. Traveling to space is an idea that each year captivates 6,000 hopefuls around the world who apply to NASA.

How much does a NASA astronaut earn?

According to data from the year 2020, a NASA astronaut could earn between 66,167 and 161,141 dollars gross per year, which in euros is between 55,400 and 134,930 euros per year. 

Likewise, this trade is registered as a public official GS-12 and GS-13, so they can also charge based on their skills and seniority in the profession.

However, for those curious who want to know the exact data of how much a NASA astronaut receives monthly, basically, what you have to do is divide the previous amounts between the twelve months of the year, and the salary corresponds to 4,616 euros per month and 11,244 euros per month for astronauts with more experience.

But this is not all. An astronaut who rises to a higher position, a category called GS-15, can receive a salary of $142,000 a year (118,930 euros/year), although the amount will depend on the person’s responsibility and position. 

What do you have to do to be a NASA astronaut? 

If after knowing the high salaries that astronauts earn, there is someone who wonders what exactly it takes to enter NASA and follow in the footsteps of Neil Armstrong, they should know that it is not an easy job in any respect.

The selection process is very demanding, since, as Business Insider indicates, it can be much more difficult than entering Harvard University.

In addition, only eleven every two years does NASA choose a new crew of astronauts: in 2019, out of a total of 18,000 applicants, only 11 obtained a position in this space agency.

Among the basic requirements to be part of NASA, the following stand out, although it should be noted that others can be requested for more specific areas:

  • Possess American nationality.
  • Be graduated in a scientific, technological or mathematics career.
  • Have three years of experience in your field or failing that with a Doctorate.
  • At least 1,000 hours as a jet pilot.
  • Be between 1.57 and 1.90 centimeters tall due to the space inside the flight devices and the complex manufacturing process of spacesuits.
  • Knowledge of robotics and the Russian language will be valued.

The selection process for NASA 

Being able to enter NASA as an astronaut means overcoming a long and hard selection process that can last at least 2 years. These are the steps that applicants must follow:

  1. Once the applicants meet the basic requirements to be a NASA astronaut, they must submit their application, which will receive and make the first screening of candidates that fit the requested profile.
  2. The outstanding and selected profiles of that first screening will be sent to the Johnson Space Center Astronaut office located in Houston, Texas. Already here, the candidates are analyzed very carefully, going into a process of different tests that will take around 2 years of time.

What tests must be passed to be an astronaut?

The tests that candidates must pass to be NASA astronaut are divided into the medical exam, physical exam, and technical exam.

  • The medical exam will assess your vision and blood pressure.
  • The technical exam will consist of knowing the systems that are used in the International Space Station, space vehicles, and some space programs. On the other hand, as indicated above, knowledge of the Russian language and robotics will be highly valued in this part of the process.
  • Physical exam, is usually the most feared by the candidates and it is not for less, it will be necessary to demonstrate having perfect military training designed to survive in extreme situations. To do this, you will have to satisfactorily overcome these hard exercises:
    1. Paddling in the water for 10 minutes of time with the astronaut suit on.
    2. Pass tests inside special chambers that change atmospheric pressure.
    3. The time difference between performing the test of swimming 75 meters without stopping and then swimming those 75 meters again but with the suit on will be measured.
    4. Successfully withstand the microgravity of space flight, which will be measured by a jet specially designed for this test.

For the most ambitious, it is important to note that NASA is currently working on the Artemis Program, which seeks to send a woman to the Moon for the first time.​

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