Sunita Williams among 4 astronauts chosen to fly NASA’s first commercial space vehicle [ Current Affairs ]


Indian-American Sunita Williams is among four veteran astronauts who has been chosen by NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) to fly the first commercial space vehicles. Robert Behnken , Eric Boe and Douglas Hurley are three other who will be trained and prepared for commercial space flights of Boeing Company and SpaceX to provide low-Earth orbit transportation services to and from the International Space Station (ISS).

  • They will also be part of NASA’s ambitious plan of human landing on Mars by 2030. It will open up low-Earth orbit transportation to the private sector and help US be once again self-reliant in space travel, as they are currently dependent on Russia.
  • Sunita Williams was born on 19 September 1965. NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) had selected Williams for the astronaut programme in 1998.
  • Earlier, she was a US Navy captain and was a helicopter pilot with more than 3,000 flight hours experience in more than 30 different aircraft.
  • At present, she ranks 6th on the all-time US endurance list and 2nd all-time for a female astronaut and holds the world records for most spacewalk time i.e. 50 hours, 40 minutes by a woman astronaut and most spacewalks by a woman astronaut (seven times).

- Published on: July 14, 2015