Astronauts

NASA has 42 current astronauts to select from for a possible mission to the moon.

How NASA Is Selecting the Next Astronauts to Walk on the Moon

The space agency has said that it will send the first woman and the first person of color to the lunar surface

A camera mounted on the Orion spacecraft captured the moon just in frame on December 4, 2022. NASA plans to use Orion as part of a mission to return astronauts to the lunar surface.

How Space Radiation Threatens Lunar Exploration

Scientists are studying the possible impacts of the hazard on astronauts who will travel to the moon

A photo of the International Space Station taken by a crewmember aboard the space shuttle orbiter Discovery in 2001. 

Space Station Astronauts to Receive New Spacecraft After Coolant Leak

The original vehicle was deemed too dangerous for a regular trip home and will only be used in an emergency

Innovators may want to create soft robots that more accurately replicate the dynamics of an elephant’s trunk.

Seven Scientific Discoveries From 2022 That May Lead to New Inventions

Nature is a breeding ground for innovative solutions to everything from aging to plastic pollution

The Orion spacecraft after landing in the Pacific Ocean.

NASA Sets Sights on Crewed Moon Missions After Orion Capsule's Return to Earth

Next, the space agency wants to send astronauts to orbit—and land on—the moon

In this image from December 4, Orion gets closer to the moon in advance of its December 5 flyby. 

Orion Spacecraft Completes Final Moon Flyby

The capsule is scheduled to return to Earth on December 11

The rocket carrying the spacecraft with the three Chinese astronauts lifts off from Earth. 

China Launches Three Astronauts to Its Space Station

The crew will spend six months in orbit and conduct a number of science experiments

Great Britain's John McFall (left) won a bronze medal at the 2008 Paralympic Games in Beijing.

The First Astronaut With a Disability Is a Paralympic Bronze Medalist

The European Space Agency selected John McFall, along with 16 others, as part of its latest class of astronaut candidates

One reader wonders: Have any Native American nations been governed by women? 

Have Women Ever Run a Native American Nation? And More Questions From Our Readers

You've got questions. We've got experts

The Apollo 11 Command Module Columbia, the only part of the spacecraft from the first moon-landing expedition to return to Earth, is on view with the space suit that Neil Armstrong wore when he walked on the moon in July 1969.

A New Look for the National Air and Space Museum

The Incredible Technology That Made Humanity's Moon Dreams a Reality

A new, completely reimagined exhibition goes beyond the Cold War narrative to explore the full story of lunar landings

European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut Matthias Maurer on a spacewalk outside the International Space Station

Art Meets Science

Tom Cruise Might Become the First Civilian to Spacewalk at the ISS

Universal is game to send Cruise into space for a proposed action film, but plans aren't official yet

Nicole Mann poses for a portrait in a T-38 trainer jet at Ellington Field in Houston, Texas, in 2018.

Nicole Mann Becomes the First Native American Woman in Space

She is the mission commander of NASA’s SpaceX Crew-5 mission that will spend five months on the International Space Station

Members of NASA's Mars 2020 project lower the oxygen-producing instrument, called MOXIE, into the Perseverance Mars Rover in March 2019.

A Lunchbox-Sized Device Is Making Oxygen on Mars

By scaling up the technology, NASA could allow future astronauts to breathe on the Red Planet

An artist’s rendering of astronauts working near NASA’s Artemis base camp, complete with a rover and RV.

The Revolution in Moon Exploration

Four Things We’ve Learned About NASA’s Planned Base Camp on the Moon

Eventually the station will allow astronauts to spend up to two months on the lunar surface

This mosaic depicts the International Space Station as pictured from the SpaceX Crew Dragon Endeavour in November 2021.

Russia Says It Will Leave the International Space Station After 2024

The United States and Russia jointly built and now operate the station

Aldrin's Apollo 11 inflight coverall jacket

These Objects Tell the Story of Buzz Aldrin's Career

The astronaut is auctioning off his moon-landing jacket and other space gear

Karen Nyberg, a retired NASA astronaut, is launching a new fabric line inspired by her time in space. 

Good News

Retired Astronaut Launches a Fabric Line Inspired by Her Views of Earth From Space

Karen Nyberg's two missions to the International Space Station over her 30-year career with NASA fueled her creativity as an artist

Scans of the astronaut's neural networks were taken before they blasted off into space, as soon as they landed safely back home, and some cosmonauts had an additional brain scan seven months after their return to Earth. (Pictured: Astronaut Bruce McCandless II during an untethered spacewalk in 1984)
 

Long-Term Space Travel May 'Rewire' Astronauts' Brains

The changes may help the organ adapt to microgravity, but they seem to persist for several months after returning to Earth

This Bushnell telescope allowed Sally Ride to gaze at her favorite constellation, Orion, and envision her future as an astronaut. 

Women Who Shaped History

How the Smithsonian Is Honoring Remarkable American Women

From a series of coins to a museum in the making, their groundbreaking achievements gain new visibility

The first-ever archaeology experiment in space is being conducted on the International Space Station.

First-Ever Archaeological Project Studies How Astronauts Adapt to Their Environments

Researchers on Earth, partnering with those on the International Space Station, are taking a novel approach to understanding the ways humans live in space

loading icon