It’s been 58 years since the first ever human trip to outer space performed by Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin. While that was definitely a historical event, it was only the beginning of the space exploration era that is now reaching its peak. Around 500 people have been to space during the last few decades, and only 10% of them were women.
The Space industry has come a long way since then and now you can see much more women in NASA in general and on the International Space Station (ISS) in particular. It was only a matter of time when an all-female crew will gather up for a historical event – and so they did!
Meet Kristina Koch, a U. S. astronaut who spent most of her youth studying to get a Bachelor degree in science and a Master’s degree in Electrical Engineering. She also went on a challenging trip to Arctic and Antartic to prepare herself both physical and mentally for the hardships of outer space. It was her fourth spacewalk, nevertheless, she wanted to prepare and do her best.
Jessica Meir, an astronaut of Swedish, American, and Israeli origin, has never been to outer space, which made her even more eager to prepare for a walk in space. As a kid she was heavily inspired by the Space Shuttle missions, or maybe it was the starry night of Maine that got her interested in becoming an astronaut. She’s been on ISS since September, 25, waiting for the perfect timing that would allow her to go on an all-female spacewalk.
The spacewalk was scheduled for spring, but had to be postponed due to space suite issues. But this time everything went perfectly fine and on October, 18, both Kristina Koch and Jessica Meir went to space to replace a charge/discharge battery unit which is responsible for regulating the charge that goes to batteries from solar power.
Why is this news so important, you might wonder? Well for starters only 12 women have been to outer space during the last 35 years, performing an impressive amount of 40 spacewalks. Now there’s more of them and we’re simply proud to witness this moment! Koch and Meir have joined the group of incredibly talented women that helped (and are doing it still) shape NASA and turn it into the powerful organization we know today.