Astronaut Jessica Watkins, a candidate to go to the moon … and to Mars

If you could decide, what would you prefer? an actTogo a The the moon also a Mars?

This question is purely theoretical. for Most people take another meaning for Jessica WatkinsAnd the astronaut from NASA.

He answers: “Whichever comes first!” a AFP laughs during a special interview in Zero Gravity from the International Space Station (ISS).

a She is 34 years old, with a full career ahead of her s She could be one of the first women to step on the moon in the next years. missions for Mars It seems more distant, but since the astronauts a They often work in their fifties, maybe Watkins You still have a chance.

Faced with this default choice, he refuses to pronounce s She asserts that she will be “very pleased” because her fate “is the moon also Mars“.

Meanwhile, her first spaceflight made history: she was the first black woman to perform a long-term mission to the International Space Station, where she had already spent more than three months. s It will last for three more.

The Apollo missions carried only white men. a The the moon. NASA is trying to change that image of a Little with a landing not only for the first woman, but for the first black person.

“It will be an important step for Agency, for country and even for the scientist ” Watkins. “Acting is important. It’s hard to become what you don’t see.”

“I am so grateful to those who came before me, women s The black astronauts who opened the way for Let me be here today.” for Mine”.

– Soul of a geologist –

Watkins He was born in Gaithersburg, a suburb of Washington, and raised in Colorado s He studied geology in California. As part of a postdoctoral fellowship, work for NASA is on the Curiosity rover mission, which has just completed 10 years in Mars.

This is how the planet entered his heart. The American has already published a scientific study on Mars While in orbit, on the International Space Station.

geologist, scientist, astronautIt is the order in which it is described.

Remember the moment your passion started for Planetary geology, the science that studies formation s Star formation.

One of his first geological chapters was about planetary accretion, when solid bodies fuse with each other for Forming bigger bodies sIn the end the planets.

There, “I realized this is what I wanted to do for the rest of my life, s What I wanted to study.”

This is why he considers the “enormous” fact of “being part of an effort that truly seeks to do work on another planetary body.”

After the Apollo program, the Artemis program seeks to gradually establish a permanent human presence on Earth. the moonwhich you can use as a basis for travels to Mars. The first unmanned mission must be launched a end of the month around the moon.

Jessica Watkins He is part of the 18 astronauts appointed a Artemis.

Officially, all “active” astronauts (there are currently 42) have an equal chance of being selected. for for travel a The the moon.

– “he crossed his boundaries” –

Although NASA has the privilege a a astronaut more experienced for The first manned mission, the scientific profile of Watkins I have to play a your favor a future.

for Astronauts, good manners s Team spirit is also important, with crew members spending a lot of time confined to small spaces. Watkins He asserts that his relatives say he is “easy to carry”, s Who learned the value of teamwork by playing rugby.

who determines for She works astronaut?

“All of us have this sense of exploration s Desire to keep pushing the limits of what humans can do. I think it’s something that unites us.”

Since his childhood, he dreamed of traveling to space s He always kept that hope in his head, without thinking that it could happen one day.

“Don’t be afraid to dream big,” he says. “You never know when your dreams will come true.”

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