20 Jan 2024

Nisha Shankar: How to train an astronaut

From The Weekend , 10:07 am on 20 January 2024

Nisha Shankar: How to train an astronaut

Nisha Shankar is chief training officer at NASA's Johnson Space Centre. She takes astronauts who are fresh out of basic training and teaches them the skills they need to thrive on the International Space Station.

During the two-year course Nisha teaches the prospective crew a range of skills from docking a cargo vehicle through to how to wash their hair in zero gravity. Interpersonal skills also play a huge part in her training. Once an astronaut is in space there is no escape from their fellow crew members, so they'd better get on!

Nisha joins Susana Lei'ataua on The Weekend to share exactly how to train an astronaut.

A large spacecraft with "wings" of solar panels above the surface of the Earth.

The International Space Station. Photo: NASA Johnson CC BY-NC-ND 2.0