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Astronaut selection groups
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Astronauts, cosmonauts, and taikonauts are trained in groups, recruited at intervals as a nation's needs change. Here are all the selection groups, with links to their members and flights.


More at: Astronaut selection groups.

Subtopics

X-15-1 astronaut group, 1957 Null

Man-In-Space-Soonest Group - 1958 To provide pilots for the USAF Project 7969 MISS "Man-In-Space-Soonest" manned spacecraft. On 25 June 1958 the Air Force completed a preliminary astronaut selection for the project. The list was prioritized according to the weight of the pilot due to the low payload available. The 150-175 pound group consisted of test pilots Bob or Robert Walker, Scott Crossfield, Neil Armstrong, and Robert Rushworth. In the 175 to 200 pound group were William Bridgeman, Alvin White, Iven Kincheloe, Robert White, and Jack McKay. It was the first astronaut selection in history.

X-15-2 astronaut group, 1958 Null

NASA-1 astronaut group, 1959 Requirement: six pilots for the single-crew Mercury manned spacecraft. Originally a wide pool of candidates was going to be considered, but in December 1958 President Eisenhower ruled that military test pilots would form the candidate pool. Nickname: The Original Seven

TsPK-1 astronaut group, 1960 Requirement: pilot astronauts for the Vostok program.

Mercury 13 astronaut group, 1961 Group of 13 female pilots who passed astronaut physical testing in 1961 to prove that women were also qualified for spaceflight. NASA never considered them, maintaining that astronauts had to be qualified test pilots (all of whom were white males). Nickname: The Mercury Thirteen

NASA-2 astronaut group, 1962 Requirement: pilots for the Gemini program and early Apollo missions. Nickname: The Next Nine

Women (VVS) astronaut group, 1962 Requirement: female astronauts for Vostok and Voskhod flights, primarily for propaganda purposes.

X-20 astronaut group, 1962 Requirement: supplemental pilot for X-20A Dynasoar spaceplane flights to replace Armstrong and Dana.

NASA-3 astronaut group, 1963 Requirement: crew members for planned Apollo missions (then planned as 4 Saturn I missions in 1965, 2-4 Saturn IB missions in 1966, 6 Saturn V missions from 1967). Nickname: The Fourteen.

TsPK-2 astronaut group, 1963 Requirement: astronauts for the Soyuz manned spaceflight program.

X-15-3 astronaut group, 1963 Null

Voskhod-1 astronaut group, 1964 Payload specialists and physicians for Voskhod spaceflights.

Korolyov astronaut group, 1965 Null

MOL-1 astronaut group, 1965 Requirement: crews for flights of the Manned Orbiting Laboratory, a classified military manned space station.

NASA-4 astronaut group, 1965 Requirement: scientist-astronauts for Apollo lunar landing and Apollo applications earth-orbit space station missions. Nickname: The Scientists.

TsPK-3 astronaut group, 1965 Requirement: pilots for planned Soyuz, Soyuz VI, Spiral, and Almaz flights. In 1968-1975 the VVS expected no fewer than 20 Almaz space stations, 50 military 7K-VI missions, 200 Soyuz training spacecraft flights and 400 Soyuz space transport flights.

X-15-4 astronaut group, 1965 Null

Mishin astronaut group, 1966 Null

MOL-2 astronaut group, 1966 Requirement: crews for flights of the Manned Orbiting Laboratory, a classified military manned space station.

NASA-5 astronaut group, 1966 Requirement: pilot-astronauts for the Apollo Applications Program (then planned as 10 lunar landings after Apollo 11 and 30 Apollo flights to earth-orbit space stations). Nickname: The Original Nineteen

X-15-5 astronaut group, 1966 Null

AN-1 astronaut group, 1967 Requirement: scientists for lunar landing missions.

MOL-3 astronaut group, 1967 Requirement: crews for flights of the Manned Orbiting Laboratory, a classified military manned space station.

NASA-6 astronaut group, 1967 Requirement: additional scientist-astronauts for Apollo lunar landing and earth-orbit space station missions. Nickname: The Excess Eleven.

TsPK-4 astronaut group, 1967 Requirement: engineers for planned Soyuz and Almaz flights. In 1968-1975 the VVS expected no fewer than 20 Almaz space stations, 50 military 7K-VI missions, 200 Soyuz training spacecraft flights and 400 Soyuz space transport flights.

TsKBEM-1 astronaut group, 1968 Requirement: engineers for planned Soyuz and Almaz flights. In 1968-1975 the VVS expected no fewer than 20 Almaz space stations, 50 military 7K-VI missions, 200 Soyuz training spacecraft flights and 400 Soyuz space transport flights.

NASA-7 astronaut group, 1969 NASA was forced to take on seven pilot-astronauts from the cancelled USAF MOL military space station program. All of these men would have to wait to the shuttle era for space missions, but they all would eventually fly.

Shuguang Group - 1970 Requirement: pilot astronauts for the Shuguang program.

TsPK-5 astronaut group, 1970 Requirement: test pilots for the Spiral spaceplane.

IMBP-1 astronaut group, 1972 Requirement: physicians for Salyut space station missions.

TsKBEM-2 astronaut group, 1972 Requirement: engineers for lunar landing missions.

TsKBM-1 astronaut group, 1972 Requirement: engineer for Almaz military space station missions.

TsKBEM-3 astronaut group, 1973 Requirement: engineers for Apollo-Soyuz international space docking mission.

TsKBM-2 astronaut group, 1973 Requirement: engineer for Almaz military space station missions.

Interkosmos-1 astronaut group, 1976 Requirement: pilots from friendly socialist countries to visit Salyut space stations for propaganda purposes on Soyuz ferry-exchange missions.

TsPK-6 astronaut group, 1976 Requirement: test pilots for the Buran program.

LII-1 astronaut group, 1977 Requirement: test pilot for the Buran program.

ESA-1 astronaut group, 1978 Null

IMBP-2 astronaut group, 1978 Requirement: physicians for Mir space station missions.

Interkosmos-2 astronaut group, 1978 Requirement: pilots from friendly socialist countries to visit Salyut space stations for propaganda purposes on Soyuz ferry-exchange missions.

NASA-8 astronaut group, 1978 Requirement: pilot, engineer, and scientist astronauts for space shuttle flights. Recruit women and minorities to introduce diversity into the astronaut corps. Nickname: TFNG - Thirty-Five New Guys, also an obscene military phrase.

NPOE-4 astronaut group, 1978 Requirement: engineers for Apollo-Soyuz and Soyuz 7K-S missions.

Spacelab-1 astronaut group, 1978 Null

Spacelab-2 astronaut group, 1978 Null

TsKBM-3 astronaut group, 1978 Requirement: engineers for Almaz military space station missions.

TsPK-7 astronaut group, 1978 Requirement: pilots for the Buran and Mir programs.

GKNII-1 astronaut group, 1979 Requirement: test pilots for the Buran program.

Interkosmos-3 astronaut group, 1979 Requirement: pilots from friendly socialist countries to visit Salyut space stations for propaganda purposes on Soyuz ferry-exchange missions.

MSE-1 astronaut group, 1979 Requirement: shuttle manned spaceflight engineers to operate military payloads.

AN-2 astronaut group, 1980 Requirement: female scientist cosmonauts to visit Salyut and Mir space stations, primarily for propaganda purposes, to upstage American female astronaut flights aboard the shuttle.

CNES-1 astronaut group, 1980 Requirement: French pilot astronaut to visit Salyut space station for propaganda purposes on Soyuz ferry-exchange missions.

IMBP-3 astronaut group, 1980 Requirement: female physicians to visit Salyut and Mir space stations, primarily for propaganda purposes, to upstage American female astronaut flights aboard the shuttle.

MAP astronaut group, 1980 Requirement: test pilots for Buran spaceplane

NASA-9 astronaut group, 1980 Requirement: pilot, engineer, and scientist astronauts for space shuttle flights. Nickname: 19+80 - The two European astronauts in the group were not considered by the Americans to be part of the 'official' group. This led to a scene at graduation.

NPOE-5 astronaut group, 1980 Requirement: female engineer cosmonauts to visit Salyut and Mir space stations, primarily for propaganda purposes, to upstage American female astronaut flights aboard the shuttle.

DLR-1 astronaut group, 1982 Null

India astronaut group, 1982 Requirement: pilots from India to visit Salyut space station for propaganda purposes on Soyuz ferry-exchange mission.

MSE-2 astronaut group, 1982 Requirement: shuttle manned spaceflight engineers to operate military payloads.

AMN astronaut group, 1983 Requirement: physician for Salyut space station missions.

CSA-1 astronaut group, 1983 Requirement: engineer, and scientist astronauts for space shuttle flight billets provided in exchange for Canadian development of the shuttle's remote manipulator arm.

LII-2 astronaut group, 1983 Requirement: test pilots for Buran spaceplane

McDonnell Douglas astronaut group, 1983 Null

Spacelab-3 astronaut group, 1983 Null

ASI-1 astronaut group, 1984 Null

ASTRO-1 astronaut group, 1984 Null

Congress Observer astronaut group, 1984 Null

EOM astronaut group, 1984 Null

Hughes astronaut group, 1984 Null

India astronaut group, 1984 Null

LII-3 astronaut group, 1984 Requirement: test pilots for Buran spaceplane

NASA-10 astronaut group, 1984 Requirement: pilot, engineer, and scientist astronauts for space shuttle flights. Nickname: The Maggots. Named by Bill Shepherd, who dubbed them in their earliest group training in aircraft survival school, a term familiar to graduates of USMC boot camp.

NPOE-6 astronaut group, 1984 Requirement: engineers for Mir missions.

Spacelab-4 astronaut group, 1984 Null

United Kingdom(PSP) astronaut group, 1984 Null

USN-Observer astronaut group, 1984 Null

AmSat astronaut group, 1985 Null

ATLAS-1 astronaut group, 1985 Null

CNES-2 astronaut group, 1985 Null

DoD-Observer astronaut group, 1985 Null

EOM astronaut group, 1985 Null

Indonesia astronaut group, 1985 Null

LII-4 astronaut group, 1985 Requirement: test pilots for Buran spaceplane

McDonnell Douglas astronaut group, 1985 Null

Mexico astronaut group, 1985 Null

MSE-3 astronaut group, 1985 Requirement: shuttle manned spaceflight engineers to operate military payloads.

NASA-11 astronaut group, 1985 Requirement: pilot, engineer, and scientist astronauts for space shuttle flights.

NASDA-1 astronaut group, 1985 Requirement: Japanese astronauts for flights aboard Shuttle, ISS.

NPOE-7 astronaut group, 1985 Requirement: engineers for Mir missions.

RCA astronaut group, 1985 Null

Saudi-Arabia astronaut group, 1985 Null

Sunlab astronaut group, 1985 Null

Syria astronaut group, 1985 Requirement: pilots from Syria to visit Salyut space station for propaganda purposes on Soyuz ferry-exchange mission.

Teacher in Space astronaut group, 1985 Null

WOSE-1 astronaut group, 1985 Null

AN-3 astronaut group, 1986 Null

Bulgaria astronaut group, 1987 Requirement: pilot from Bulgaria to visit Mir space station for propaganda purposes on Soyuz ferry-exchange mission. This was compensation mission due to failure to deliver Bulgarian cosmonaut on earlier mission to Salyut.

DLR-2 astronaut group, 1987 Requirement: German astronauts for flights to the Mir space station and aboard the shuttle.

NASA-12 astronaut group, 1987 Requirement: pilot, engineer, and scientist astronauts for space shuttle flights. Nickname: The Gaffers (acronym for 'George Abbey Final Fifteen' - the last group selected with George Abbey as Director of Flight Crew Operations). The class motto: 'What's the rush?' since there was expected to be along wait for flights after the Challenger disaster.

NPOE-8 astronaut group, 1987 Requirement: engineers for Mir missions.

StarLab astronaut group, 1987 Null

TsPK-8 astronaut group, 1987 Requirement: pilots for the Buran and Mir programs.

Afghanistan astronaut group, 1988 Requirement: pilots from Afghanistan to visit Salyut space station for propaganda purposes on Soyuz ferry-exchange mission.

Terra Scout astronaut group, 1988 Null

TsPK-9 astronaut group, 1988 Requirement: test pilots for Buran spaceplane

WOSE-2 astronaut group, 1988 Null

AN-4 astronaut group, 1989 Null

ASI-2 astronaut group, 1989 Requirement: Italian astronauts for missions aboard Hermes, Mir, and Shuttle.

ATLAS astronaut group, 1989 Null

Austria astronaut group, 1989 Requirement: Austrian cosmonaut for commercially funded mission to Mir station.

GKNII-3 astronaut group, 1989 Requirement: test pilots for Buran spaceplane

IMBP-5 astronaut group, 1989 Requirement: physicians for Mir space station missions.

IML-1 astronaut group, 1989 Null

Japan TBS astronaut group, 1989 Requirement: Japanese astronauts for commercial mission to Mir.

NPOE-9 astronaut group, 1989 Requirement: engineers for missions to the Mir space station.

OKPKI-5 astronaut group, 1989 Requirement: test pilots for Buran spaceplane

SLS-1 astronaut group, 1989 Null

Spacelab-J astronaut group, 1989 Null

TsPK-10 astronaut group, 1989 Requirement: pilot cosmonauts for Mir missions.

United Kingdom(Soyuz) astronaut group, 1989 Requirement: British cosmonaut for commercially funded mission to Mir station.

CNES-3 astronaut group, 1990 Requirement: French astronauts for spaceflights aboard Hermes spaceplane and to Mir and US space stations.

DLR-3 astronaut group, 1990 Requirement: German astronauts for missions aboard Mir, Shuttle, Hermes spaceplane, and ISS.

GKNII-4 astronaut group, 1990 Requirement: test pilots for Buran spaceplane

KKSZh astronaut group, 1990 Requirement: journalists to visit Mir space station.

MGA / MAP astronaut group, 1990 Requirement: pilot cosmonaut for Mir missions.

NASA-13 astronaut group, 1990 Requirement: pilot, engineer, and scientist astronauts for space shuttle flights. Nickname: The Hairballs. As the 13th astronaut group, the 'unlucky' theme was discussed in designing an emblem for the group. A black cat was used on an early patch design rejected by NASA. This reminded some of hairballs and the group members adopted this as a nickname.

Terra Geode astronaut group, 1990 Null

TsPK-11 astronaut group, 1990 Requirement: pilot cosmonauts for Mir missions.

USML-1 astronaut group, 1990 Null

Kazakhstan astronaut group, 1991 Requirement: pilots from Kazakhstan to visit Mir space station.

SLS-2 astronaut group, 1991 Null

CSA-2 astronaut group, 1992 Requirement: engineer, and scientist astronauts for space shuttle flight billets provided in exchange for Canadian development of the shuttle's remote manipulator arm.

ESA-2 astronaut group, 1992 Requirement: ESA astronauts for Mir, Shuttle, and ISS missions.

NASA-14 astronaut group, 1992 Requirement: pilot, engineer, and scientist astronauts for space shuttle flights. Nickname: The Hogs.

NASDA-2 astronaut group, 1992 Requirement: Japanese astronauts for flights aboard Shuttle, ISS.

ASTRO-2 astronaut group, 1993 Null

NPOE-11 astronaut group, 1994 Requirement: engineers for missions to the ISS space station.

USML-2 astronaut group, 1994 Null

ASI-3 astronaut group, 1995 Null

NASA-15 astronaut group, 1995 Requirement: pilot, engineer, and scientist astronauts for space shuttle flights. Nickname: The Flying Escargot. Originally dubbed the 'snails' by the Hogs, because they were supposed to be the class of 1994, but the announcement was delayed a year;. They renamed themselves with the better-sounding French equivalent.

RAN-6 astronaut group, 1995 Requirement: physicians for Mir space station missions.

China instructor astronaut group, 1996 Requirement: two trainees to receive intense cosmonaut training in Russia and become instructors for China's astronaut training for the Shenzhou program.

MKS astronaut group, 1996 Null

MSL-1 astronaut group, 1996 Null

NASA-16 astronaut group, 1996 Requirement: pilot, engineer, and scientist astronauts for space shuttle flights. Nickname: The Sardines (named because that's how packed they were; at 44 this was the largest ASCAN class of all time)

NASDA-3 astronaut group, 1996 Requirement: Japanese astronauts for flights aboard Shuttle, ISS.

Neurolab astronaut group, 1996 Null

RKKE-12 astronaut group, 1996 Requirement: engineers for missions to the ISS space station.

Ukraine astronaut group, 1996 Requirement: pilots from Ukraine to visit Mir space station for propaganda purposes on Soyuz ferry-exchange mission.

Israel astronaut group, 1997 Null

Movie Actor astronaut group, 1997 Requirement: engineers for missions to the ISS space station.

Politican-1 astronaut group, 1997 Requirement: flight of representative of Russian President's office on Mir and ISS missions.

RKKE-13 astronaut group, 1997 Requirement: engineers for missions to the ISS space station.

TsPK-12 astronaut group, 1997 Requirement: pilot cosmonauts for ISS missions.

Brazil astronaut group, 1998 Null

China-1 astronaut group, 1998 Requirement: pilot astronauts for the Shenzhou program.

EAC astronaut group, 1998 Null

NASA-17 astronaut group, 1998 Requirement: pilot, engineer, and scientist astronauts for space shuttle flights. Nickname: The Penguins. Originally called the Dodos by the Sardines, after an extinct flightless bird; they renamed themselves after a flightless bird that eats fish...

Slovakia astronaut group, 1998 Requirement: pilots from Slovakia to visit Mir space station for propaganda purposes on Soyuz ferry-exchange mission.

US-Senate astronaut group, 1998 Null

NASA-18 astronaut group, 2000 Requirement: pilot, engineer, and scientist astronauts for space shuttle flights. Nickname: The Bugs.

Space Tourist 1 astronaut group, 2000 Null

IMBP-6 astronaut group, 2003 Requirement: physicians for ISS space station missions.

Kazakstan-1 astronaut group, 2003 Requirement: pilots from Kazakhstan to visit ISS space station.

RKKE-15 astronaut group, 2003 Requirement: engineers for missions to the ISS space station.

TsPK-13 astronaut group, 2003 Requirement: pilot cosmonauts for ISS missions.

NASA-19 astronaut group, 2004 Requirement: pilot and mission specialists for post-ISS spaceflights to the moon and beyond

Space Tourist 3 astronaut group, 2005 Null

Malaysia astronaut group, 2006 Null

RKKE-16 astronaut group, 2006 Requirement: engineer-cosmonauts for ISS missions.

South Korea astronaut group, 2006 Null

Space Tourist 4 astronaut group, 2006 Null

Space Tourist 5 astronaut group, 2006 Null

TsPK-14 astronaut group, 2006 Requirement: pilot cosmonauts for ISS missions.

Space Tourist 6 astronaut group, 2007 Null

Space Tourist 7 astronaut group, 2008 Null

CSA-3 astronaut group, 2009 Null

ESA-3 astronaut group, 2009 Astronaut training group.

JAXA-5 astronaut group, 2009 Null

NASA-20 astronaut group, 2009 Requirement: pilot and mission specialists for post-ISS spaceflights to the moon and beyond. Nickname: The Chumps (unexplained; originally the Chimps, but perhaps the Chumps based on the unlikelihood they will ever fly in space).

Space Tourist 8 astronaut group, 2009 Null

China-2 astronaut group, 2010 Requirement: pilot astronauts for the Shenzhou program. Included first female astronauts for the Chines space program.

RKKE-17 astronaut group, 2010 Requirement: engineers for missions to the ISS space station.

RKKE-18 astronaut group, 2010 Requirement: engineers for missions to the ISS space station.

TsPK-15 astronaut group, 2010 Requirement: pilot cosmonauts for ISS missions.

Selection 2012 astronaut group, 2012 Null

NASA-21 astronaut group, 2013 Null



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