ESA title
Science & Exploration

FAQs: Others

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ESA / Science & Exploration / Human and Robotic Exploration / European Astronaut Selection

 Please note: Information on this page relates to ESA's astronaut selection criteria for 2008 only. Future selection criteria may differ.

Are there psychological and intellectual requirements?

General characteristics expected of applicants include but are not limited to: good reasoning capability, the ability to work under stress, memory and concentration skills, aptitude for spatial orientation, psychomotor coordination and manual dexterity. An applicant’s personality should be characterised by high motivation, flexibility, gregariousness, empathy with fellow workers, low level of aggression, and emotional stability.

What is the ideal age to apply?

The preferred age range is 27 to 37.

Is there a quota of astronauts for each ESA Member State?

No, there is no quota of astronauts. An effort is made to achieve, in the long run, a corps with astronauts from all ESA Member States.

What if I am not selected, are there other opportunities to work for ESA?

ESA is always looking for highly qualified and motivated people. Find out about other opportunities on ESA's careers website: