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Things We Saw Today: On This Day Fifty-Five Years Ago, Valentina Tereshkova Became the First Woman in Space

Looking back on the world's first female astronaut.

On June 16, 1963, Soviet Cosmonaut Valentina Tereshkova became the first woman ever to travel into space, piloting the Vostok 6 capsule for 48 orbits and 71 hours before her descent. By the time she got back to Earth, she had spent more time in space than all U.S. astronauts combined up til then.

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NASA’s “Space Poop Challenge” Ends, Possibly Ending Diaper-Wearing Era for Astronauts

"When you gotta go, you gotta go." -Dr. Ian Malcolm

NASA's "Space Poop Challenge" (I kid you not) has just ended, with an inventor developing a brand new way for astronauts to poop while wearing those big ol' spacesuits.

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Things We Saw Today: Former Astronaut and U.S. Senator John Glenn Has Died

In grand 2016 fashion, another legend has died.

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Space Selfies Are the Best Selfies

No space duckface, sadly.

Just because you exit the stratosphere doesn't mean you can escape the pull of the selfie.

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Identical Twin Astronauts Will Test the Effects of Space on Humans

Man, the Winklevoss twins must be so jealous.

Despite the Winklevoss twins' plans to use Bitcoin to go to outer space, two NASA astronauts are getting the jump on their whole "twins in space" bit. Identical twin astronauts Scott and Mark Kelly are going to help NASA better understand how weightlessness affects the human body.

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Astronaut Does Laundry Because of Chris Hadfield’s Book [VIDEO]

Basically astronauts look ridiculous doing anything except being in space.

Former International Space Station Commander and Canadian Legend Chris Hadfield is releasing a book called An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth on October 29th - and to promote it, Book Lounge is making a series of videos featuring astronauts just trying to do every-day stuff. They're predictably hilarious.

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Chris Hadfield As David Bowie Is Out-Of-This-World Awesome

Ground control to Commander Hadfield: You are way too cool for this planet.

If you thought Commander Chris Hadfield couldn't get any more awesome - first, don't ever underestimate Hadfield, come on. Second, you have to check out the cover of Canadian magazine Maclean's, because they've got Hadfield on their cover done up like David Bowie, and it's perfection.

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Twins in Spaaace! NASA Will Perform Tests on Astronaut Using Identical Twin As Control

If one twin ages 10 milliseconds less than his brother, does anyone actually care?

As totally and unbelievably awesome as it would be to have "Space Explorer" as your job title, astronauts lives are not quite as simple as ours here on Earth -- extended time in space contributes to a whole host of health problems. But now NASA has a fairly inexpensive way to test propensity for such issues: identical twins.

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Talking Robot to Fly to Space With Japanese Astronaut

Because of course it's going up with a Japanese astronaut.

A 13.4 inch-tall humanoid robot named Kirobo will be launched into space in August. Kirobo, which has the capability to speak and carry out conversations, will join Japanese astronaut Koichi Wakada aboard the International Space Station as a conversation partner. Great news, so long as Kirobo will not be given control of the pod bay doors.

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Get Ready to Cry Some Space-Tears: Chris Hadfield Announces His Retirement

We love astronaut Chris Hadfield, which is why it's so hard to hear he's retiring. We just hope he uses his free time to write more tweets.

We've published dozens of articles about astronaut Chris Hadfield here on Geekosystem. His work on the International Space Station was impressive, but so was his own social media presence covering it. We're sad to say Hadfield is retiring from public service effective July 3rd.

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Probably the Most Wigged-Out Pictures Ever Taken Aboard the International Space Station

NASA astronaut Don Pettit, in addition to being flight engineer on Expedition 31, is also something of a gifted photographer. Aboard the International Space Station, Pettit began a series of long-exposure photographs from various locations on the orbiting outpost. Perhaps it's telling that the team chose a Starry Night-inspired background for their group photo because the resulting images are stunning.

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NASA Receives Highest Number of Astronaut Applicants in Over 30 Years

In case you had forgotten, NASA has extended its search for new astronauts online in recent years, giving anyone the chance to apply for what is probably the coolest job on the planet. Hopefully you didn't forget to turn in your application, because the NASA won't be taking anymore for a while. However, the space agency repots that it was a banner year, boasting the most applications since 1978. So if you did remember to apply, you're going to have a lot of competition.

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NASA Accepting Applications to Become an Astronaut

You knew it was coming, so you've had plenty of time to brush up your résumé and apply for a job as an astronaut. Sure, it's not the most glamorous job. You'll only make between $67k-$141K, and to qualify you'll have to posses over 1,000 hours of jet-flying experience, an advanced degree, and also be between 62 and 75 inches tall. The perks? You fly into space. See the requirements and apply for the job, after the break.

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You (Yes, You!) Can Apply to Be An Astronaut!

If you have ever dreamed of going into space, now is your chance. No, this isn't some weird one-way suicide mission, nor is it yet another (yawn!) opportunity for the ultra-wealthy to spend a few minutes weightless. This is NASA's open enrollment for a job as an astronaut; a real, actual, astronaut. Of course, that's if you make it through the application process. On the subject of qualifications, NASA has this advice to applicants:
A bachelor's degree in engineering, science or math and three years of relevant professional experience are required in order to be considered. Typically, successful applicants have significant qualifications in engineering or science, or extensive experience flying high-performance jet-aircraft.
If you make it through the exhaustive application, you should expect to hear back from NASA sometime in 2013. Training will begin in August of that year.

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The Southern Lights, as Seen From the International Space Station

Astronaut Ron Garan posted this incredible photo of aurora australis or Southern Lights taken from aboard the International Space Station (ISS). The picture, posted to Google+ last night, were among the last Garan took while in orbit before leaving the station and returning to Earth. Hopefully the next Soyuz spacecraft will launch without a hitch so we can be assured a steady stream of these amazing images. (Ron Garan via BoingBoing)

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Report: NASA Needs More Astronauts

Though NASA has big plans despite the retirement of their flagship Space Shuttles, a new report from the National Research Council says that the agency has to do more to retain a robust astronaut corps. At the heart of the report is the surprising statistic that since 2000, the number of astronauts has shrunk dramatically from 150 to a mere 61 as of writing. According to the report, NASA has allowed the number of astronauts to shrink while the agency transitioned from building to operating the International Space Station. The loss of the Space Shuttle also meant that less astronaut training would be needed, since piloting roles would be greatly reduced. However, the report maintains that if NASA is going to operate the ISS, it will need more highly trained personnel to do it.

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Burning Astronaut

If you look at this photo by Jack Crossing of GRAPHICS DESIGNED and think, "whoa, that would make an awesome album cover," you're not alone. Crossing explains how this burning astronaut found his way to Radio City Music Hall: "This was a concept for a band in the states, they decided not to go with it. Instead My brothers label is going to use it."

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