How to become an Astronaut in India | 2022 (Full details)14 min read

How to become an Astronaut in India: As children, we all had fantasies about flying to the moon or glimpsing the stars. As children, we were delighted to learn about spacecraft arriving on other planets and the universe.

To learn more about the universe, astronauts perform the difficult and dangerous work of traveling to and from the edge of the solar system.

In the beginning, astronauts were viewed as mere observers and recorders of events in space. These heavenly bodies have to be investigated.

This article explains everything you need to know about becoming an Astronaut in India.

Types of Astronauts in India:

To ensure a mission’s success, each astronaut has a specific role. Here are a few examples of the numerous types of astronauts:

Pilot: The term “pilot” is the greatest distinction an astronaut may receive. Piloting the spacecraft, including takeoff and landing, is up to the pilot. The mission briefing specifies the pilot’s duties.

Commander: A Commander’s principal duty is to ensure a mission’s success from launch to safe return to Earth’s surface. Commanders are ultimately accountable for the safety of their crew, the ship, and its equipment.

Flight Engineer: The Flight Engineer is a vital crew member. He is in charge of making sure the spacecraft’s systems work properly and fixing any issues that emerge.

Mission Specialist: A Mission Specialist is dispatched to undertake research in space. He collects and analyzes all data. The Mission Specialists are the world’s greatest in geology, biology, chemistry, and other fields of science.

Eligibility Requirements for being an Astronaut in India:

In today’s world, not only do you have to meet specific eligibility standards, but you also have to meet certain physical and medical requirements.

An astronaut’s medical and physical qualifications are critical because the work is extremely dangerous and requires a lot of safeguards to be taken. The major requirements include:

  • Indian Citizenship
  • Must be a pilot in the Indian Air Force.
  • A doctorate/Master’s in Aeronautical Engineering aerospace engineering.
  • Must have a Bachelor’s degree from a reputable Institute in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics).
  • A school of 65% or 6.84 GPA on a scale of 10 is required.

Cognitive Requirements for being an Astronaut in India:

  • Good Communication Skills
  • Good coordination skills.
  • Multi-tasking in case of emergency.
  • Good leadership qualities
  • Trustworthiness
  • Must be a Teamplayer.

Special Requirements for NASA, ISRO and SpaceX:

NASA:

Candidates will undergo a rigorous training program that includes military water survival, scuba diving, swimming, and atmospheric pressure tests as part of the selection process.

ISRO:

If you’re healthy, you should have no serious medical issues, normal blood pressure, and normal vision. His mental capabilities, substance misuse, and other psychological issues should not be publicly known.

SpaceX:

A complete medical and physical history is required. Alcohol, ganja, cigarettes, and other substances should not have been used in the past. Physical fitness is essential for everyone. Other requirements for SpaceX includes:

  • Free of any mental health issues
  • Both eyes must have 20/20 visual acuity
  • In a seated position, one’s blood pressure should not exceed 140/90.

Educational Requirements to Become an Astronaut in India:

Only in high school should you begin your preparation and focus on becoming an astronaut. When it comes to physics, you should have an interest in the subject, not merely in memorizing facts.

Choosing physics, chemistry, and mathematics as your 12th-grade core subject will help you in a variety of ways.

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Bachelor’s degree:

The bachelor’s degree is next. From top institutions, you can study any subject of interest, from computer engineering to biology to mathematics to aeronautical engineering.

It is essential that you have a thorough understanding of the subjects you studied throughout your undergraduate years in order to pursue a doctoral or post-graduate degree in that field.

There are a number of tests you can take after completing your degrees in order to land the career you’ve always wanted. If you’re interested in working for NASA, you can sign up for one of their various admission exams.

Joint admission test:

You must pass the “Joint admission test” administered by IIT in order to work for ISRO. In order to be a specialist on a mission, you must have at least three years of experience.

Academic disciplines for a career in space travel:

Electrical engineering:

Electrical engineers develop, understand, and repair electronics. It’s a good idea to get an electrical engineering degree because the equipment utilized in the space shuttles is advanced.

For good reason, most astronauts are engineers. Engineers tackle problems, design, and innovate. They developed problem-solving skills. And you’ll need a handful of these to circle the sun at 17,500 mph.

Astronauts are vital in the testing, evaluating, and updating of systems. While you’ll study a lot in college, it won’t be enough to become an astronaut. A Ph.D. boosts your chances of going to the moon.

Aeronautics:

Many astronauts began their careers as pilots. Being a fighter pilot used to be a requirement for becoming an astronaut. In any event, knowing the basics of flight is an excellent start to becoming an astronaut.

Fundamentals of aviation science include aerodynamics, propulsion, materials, and structures. They’ll next design, build, and test future aircraft.

Students will need basic physics, arithmetic, and computer skills.

Students must be willing to put forth effort. Aerospace and aviation attract the most talented graduates.

Geology:

Geology investigates the earth’s structure and how it was formed.

The MEP relies on geologists to describe the differences and similarities between Mars and Earth. Vulcanology is the study of volcanoes and massive storms that have shaped the Earth’s crust.

A Mars colony plan was announced in 2016. Astronauts will visit Mars by 2030. It’s hard to say who will arrive first, but geologists are almost certain.

NASA only accepted 12 people out of 18,353 applicants in 2017, a 0.065% acceptance rate. What else do you need to be an astronaut except for academics?

To be successful, you’ll need to stand out from the crowd of smart, ambitious candidates. To be able to make good decisions under duress is a NASA value.

Astrophysics:

Aspiring astronauts should study astrophysics. In Astrophysics, all four disciplines are combined. NASA defines astrophysics as the study of “how the universe operates and evolved.”

Astrophysics is a tough subject. Top students should comprehend quantum physics, field theory, and vector calculus. They were mathematical concepts, but only human imagination could fathom them.

Again, most astrophysicists begin with a BA. Then graduate school, which can take up to eight years.

Biochemistry:

Biochemistry investigates chemical reactions in living things. Research in the lab seeks to better understand cell communication and development. Thus, biochemistry is an important subject for future astronauts.

Nutrition is a critical part of astronauts’ health. Weightlessness affects absorption, metabolism, and elimination.

NASA uses less iron in space. Toxic iron causes headaches, weight loss, nausea, and respiratory difficulties. This is one-way biochemists regularly analyze and modify physiological changes.

In this thrilling new era of space exploration, Future astronauts have already paid nearly $80 million in deposits.

More individuals will soon be going into orbit thanks to competitors like SpaceX and Blue Origin.

Exam Requirements to become an Astronaut in India:

Once a person has earned a bachelor’s degree in the relevant fields, he or she is eligible to sit for the NASA entrance exam and be hired as a scientist, astronaut, or other NASA-related position.

Candidates must pass the Joint admission exam administered by the IITs in order to join ISRO. As a condition of joining, all candidates must be at least 21 years of age.

Screening Test:

First, a screening test must be passed by the applicant. The application form is to be completed online and sent in by email.

Tests for psychological and professional aptitude assessment, including logical and behavioral abilities will next be administered.

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Medical Exam:

A medical examination will determine if the individual is physically fit and capable of dealing with crises after passing this test. Those that make it to the final round face a series of questions from other members before being voted on.

The chances of being chosen are quite minimal. There are just a few people who make it to the last round of selection, and only two to three of them get the position.

So, if you want to be an astronaut, you’ll have to pass one of the most difficult exams of your life.

Major steps on how to become an Astronaut in India:

Good decision-making skills:

Being adventurous, psychologically, and physically strong is required to become an astronaut because the selection procedure is extremely competitive. 

Choice of College:

This is very important; students must make a decision on the college where they wish to complete their studies in the STEM fields.

A college with industry connections and partnerships is a good place to look for internship and work experience while you are in school.

Preparation for the Entrance Exam:

After graduating from the 12th grade, you must select a Bachelor’s Degree program in an appropriate field of study. Aerospace, Aeronautical, and Science & Technology degrees are available.

Admission to these courses is based on academic merit or a national or university-level admission exam.

How much does an Astronaut earn in India:

At NASA and ISRO, for example, there are a variety of designations available, and your salary will be determined by which of those you possess.

Indian astronauts receive their paycheck through a commission-based system. A year’s salary for ISRO scientists, physicists, and engineers ranges from 42 lakh to 92 lakh.

Higher-ranking employees might expect monthly salaries of between Rs. 2 and Rs. 3 lakhs. In most cases, the remuneration is based on the person’s abilities, experience, and accomplishments. 

Benefits of Becoming An Astronaut in India:

  • From afar, you can observe the Earth’s surface and take in the sights of the many cosmic activities taking place.
  • You will become familiar with different worlds and learn more about them.
  • You’ll be able to collaborate with some of the nation’s top scientists and creatives.
  • You can go to space, employ high-tech gadgets, and even land spacecraft and missiles on your own territory.

Problems of Becoming An Astronaut:

  • It’s a dangerous job, and you run the risk of being disoriented in outer space.
  • Stress and loneliness can become too much to bear while you’re on the road for a long time.
  • It is possible to lose muscle mass and suffer from various health problems.
  • Have to spend a significant amount of time away from loved ones.

How to Become an Astronaut in India after 12th:

Selected 10+2 students may pursue a Bachelor’s/Engineering degree in Aeronautical, Astrophysics, Aerospace and Science & Technology.

In addition, individuals can work part-time or intern while earning a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree. Postgraduate degree programs in STEM fields require a Bachelor’s degree, whereas doctoral degree courses require a Master’s degree.

Undergraduate Preparation:

Admission to UG programs for astronauts is based on 12th-grade grades or entrance examinations like JEE Mains or JEE Advanced.

Entrance exams such as GATE, IIT JAM, etc. are used to choose students for postgraduate programs.

Students can pursue a Ph.D. after completing PG courses. Most doctoral programs need a personal interview in addition to the previous exam scores.

Best Universities in India to study to become an Astronaut:

IIST (Indian Institute of Space science and research):

The Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology (IIST), located at Valiamala, Nedumangad, Thiruvananthapuram is a government-funded institute and a deemed university in the field of space science and technology.

It is Asia’s first space-related research and education institute. Undergraduate (BTech), graduate (MTech), and doctoral (Ph.D.) programs in space science and technology are available at IIST.

Basic science doctorate and postdoctoral programs are also available. Until the 2013 batch, there were three independent BTech programs: Aerospace, Avionics, and Physical Sciences.

Engineers can now earn a B.Tech. and either a Master’s or a Doctorate in Engineering Physics, replacing the former Physical Sciences section, which was discontinued in 2014.

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IISc (Indian Institute of Science):

The Indian Institute of Science (IISc) is a public, recognized research university dedicated to science, engineering, design, and management instruction and research. Bengaluru is the capital of the Indian state of Karnataka.

The Tata Institute was founded in 1909 with the active backing of Jamsetji Tata, and is known locally as the “Tata Institute.”

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It is one of India’s most prestigious academic institutions and has the highest number of citations per faculty of any university on the planet.

In 1958, it was designated as a presumed university, and in 2018, it was designated as an Institute of Eminence. It is one of India’s oldest and greatest centers of its kind, as well as having a high international academic reputation.

Academic independence, a concentration on research excellence, and a high-quality faculty and student body distinguish IISc.

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Indian Institute of Technology:

Indian Institute of Technology’s mission is to provide high-quality, inexpensive education to students who want to pursue careers in the fields of aeronautical engineering, aerospace engineering, and avionics engineering.

They want to give students a solid foundation in the fundamentals of the discipline while also exposing them to advanced applications.

They give specialized training in electronics and computer systems for the aviation sector/industry, as well as the design and development of launch vehicles, aircraft, and spacecraft. They are one of India’s first aviation engineering institutions.

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Birla Institute of Technology and Science, Pilani (BITS Pilani):

The Birla Institute of Technology & Science, BITS Pilani is an all-Indian higher education institute. In order to produce and implement new ideas, methods, procedures, and information, BITS “trains young men and women”.

Since its inception in the early 1900s, the University of Delhi has grown to become a distinctive Indian University of International status. Many call this university Birla Institute of Technology and Science, Pilani (BITS Pilani).

BITS has provided quality technical education to students from all over India who were admitted on merit. Its graduates work in all fields of engineering, science, and commerce.

For the private sector, BITS represents the maturation of Indian technological talent and a “can-do” entrepreneurial attitude. BITS is in the Vidya Vihar campus near Pilani, Rajasthan.

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Amity university:

The Amity Institute of Aerospace Engineering (AIAE) was founded in 2007 under the auspices of Amity University Uttar Pradesh with the goal of providing high-quality education while preserving Indian culture and ethos.

The Institute’s principal goal and philosophy are to promote in-depth undergraduate education and conduct research in emerging areas of aerospace engineering that will benefit the country and the world.

The created curriculum is thorough and meets international standards.

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Conclusion:

As children, we all had fantasies about flying to the moon or glimpsing the stars. Who would have thought we could do so much in such a short period of time?

It was a joy to learn about spacecraft landing on planets and the universe as a child. To learn more about the universe, astronauts perform the difficult and dangerous work of traveling to and from the edge of the solar system.

FAQs: How to Become an Astronaut: 

How many years does it take to become an astronaut?

To be an astronaut, you’ll need to put in at least 10 years of hard work, including 6 years of formal education, 2 years of work experience, and 2 years of rigorous training.

Is becoming an astronaut a difficult process?

Yes, it is difficult to become an astronaut since the competition is really severe and grueling.

Along with a high school diploma or equivalent, applicants must also complete a rigorous training program that includes classroom instruction, hands-on training in the field, and regular competency checks.

What physical characteristics are necessary to pursue a career as an astronaut?

To become an astronaut, one must have perfect vision, normal blood pressure, a decent medical history, an average height, and good shape and physique in accordance with one’s gender and age.

In order to become an astronaut, what need I do after the 12th?

As a prerequisite for a job as an astronaut, you must complete a STEM-related degree after graduating from high school. Scuba diving, swimming, and other water-related skills are also beneficial for aspiring astronauts.

What is the most challenging part of becoming an astronaut?

To become an astronaut, you must first successfully complete the grueling training program. Basic training and advanced mission training are included in this two-year program.

Candidates must go through extensive training, including survival skills, language proficiency, technical skills, scuba diving, spacewalking, robotics, flight training, and instruction on how to use the International Space Station, among other things.