Print page

Your way to space!

For the first time since 2008, ESA is seeking new astronauts to join a journey of discovery for the benefit of Earth.

This collection of infographics gives a small insight into the role of an ESA astronaut,
selection requirements, astronaut training, what ESA does and – most importantly – how you can apply!

Are you ready? Read on for your way to space.


There are many paths to becoming an astronaut… ESA is seeking candidates with a Master’s degree
(or higher) and a minimum of three years’ experience in:

Applications from all qualified candidates, irrespective of gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, beliefs, age, or other characteristics, are welcome.

ESA is also issuing a special call for candidates with physical disabilities to apply to its astronaut
reserve. Discover this new opportunity on the ESA astronaut selection website.


As part of ESA’s commitment to enhance inclusiveness and fair representation, the Agency is launching the parastronaut feasibility project to assess the conditions for including astronauts
with disabilities to work in space.

This project is a new endeavour for Europe and a global first. The selected candidate(s) will work with ESA to assess and optimise the conditions allowing people with physical disabilities to work and live in space.

The feasibility project aims at offering professional spaceflight opportunities to a wider pool of
talents. Starting with selected disabilities to have a thorough understanding of the potential challenges in terms of safety and operations in space, the scope of disabilities may then be extended aiming at broader inclusion.

The educational and psychological requirements for these candidates are the same as for the ESA astronaut selection. However, with respect to physical requirements, this feasibility project will allow the inclusion of candidates with the following disabilities:• a lower limb deficiency, as follows:

  • Single or double foot deficiency through ankle
  • Single or double leg deficiency below the knee
    • a pronounced leg length difference
    • a short stature (<130 cm)


Established in 1975, ESA now has 22 Member States and cooperates with many others. These countries are home to more than 500 million European citizens. If you’re one of them, then we’re working for you.

Our mission is the peaceful exploration and use of space for the benefit of everyone. We watch over Earth, develop and launch inspiring and unique space projects, fly astronauts and push the boundaries of science and technology, seeking answers to the big questions about the Universe.

We are a family of scientists, engineers and business professionals from all over Europe, working together in a diverse and multinational environment


Human and robotic spaceflight contributes to a circular economy. Our research and technology developments improve energy efficiency, automation, robotics and artificial intelligence, as well as habitation, recycling, waste management and additive manufacturing processes and technology.

Click on the benefits here for more information about each subject and how it is helping people on Earth.

Aerostories #Pilots #Engineering #Operations

BACKGROUND I’m retired from a major U.S air line, the United States Air Force Reserve and NASA. At my airline I flew the Boeing...

Background My love of aviation started when I had my first flight in a glider age 10. I spent my weekends and school holidays on...

Introduction: Felicien Izaturwanaho is my name and I am a graduate in psychology from the University of Rwanda (UR). I want to...

Matt Ross – Background After finishing my A-Levels in 2015 I decided not to go to university and instead applied for an...

View all stories