NASA is breaking new floor for astronauts. ace Indian Country Today reports, the company just lately confirmed that Marine Corps Col. Nicole Aunapu Mann will be the first Native American woman to journey to space. The Wailacki tribe member will function the mission commander for the SpaceX-powered Crew-5 mission heading to the International Space Station as quickly as September twenty ninth. When she arrives, Mann will be ISS Expedition 68’s flight engineer throughout a six-month keep.
The Crew-5 mission will additionally ferry NASA’s Josh Cassada, Japan’s Koichi Wakata and Russia’s Anna Kikina to the ISS. Chickasaw Nation member John Herrington was the first Native American of any gender to visit space, flying aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavor in 2002.
Mann has a background well-suited to spaceflight. She began her profession as a Navy aviator and has flown the F/A-18 Hornet whereas supporting missions operations in Afghanistan and Iraq. She additionally earned her grasp’s diploma in mechanical engineering from Stanford. NASA selected Mann as certainly one of eight astronaut candidates in 2013. That group has since turn out to be influential, producing influential figures like Anne McClain, Jessica Meir and Crew Dragon pilot Victor Glover. Some of them, together with Mann, have made NASA’s shortlist for the first crewed Artemis missions to the Moon.
For Mann, this first spaceflight is not simply historic. In her interview with ICT, she noticed the journey as smashing “barriers” for Native American kids who did not assume they may turn out to be astronauts. It will not be stunning if extra observe her earlier than lengthy.
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