When we think of space technology or space science, the first thing that strikes us are astronauts. While they shine like stars in the field, there are numerous other employment opportunities in this field.
Every country that has a space exploration program has a limited number of career opportunities for astronauts. Individuals who want to pursue careers as astronauts must undergo rigorous training and meet stringent physical fitness criteria. Competition for these positions is fierce, and only the most outstanding candidates are accepted into their country’s astronaut training program.
Astronauts must have a degree and formal education in a field related to science or mathematics. Graduate degrees are preferred, and many astronauts have earned Master’s or Doctoral degrees. Additionally, individuals interested in becoming astronauts must be experienced pilots and must possess nearly perfect visual acuity. There are also height and weight requirements for acceptance into an astronaut training program.
- Specifics about NASA’s astronaut selection and training program are available on the NASA website.
Engineers are the ones who make space exploration travel possible. In addition to designing spacecrafts, space vehicles and space stations, engineers also create space satellites that help us better understand the weather and climate conditions that impact our daily lives. These are the opportunities for many different types of engineers in the field of space science:
- Aerospace or Aeronautical Engineers
- Avionics & Instrumentation Engineers
- Computer Engineers
- Materials Engineers
- Mechanical Engineers
- Robotics Engineers
- Spacecraft Engineers
- Telecommunications Engineers
Many scientists choose to pursue research and development careers in space science. For example, many pharmacology researchers are investigating ways to develop new medications from substances discovered during space exploration trips.
There are opportunities in space science for scientists who specialize in a wide variety of fields such as:
- Medical Doctors
Technologist and Technician Positions
In addition to engineers who design space science technology and the scientists who specialize in making sense of what is discovered in outer space, technologists and technicians play an important role in the field of space science. They work closely with the engineers and scientists to build, test, and perfect various types of space technology and innovations.
There are numerous space career opportunities for skilled technologists and technicians in the following fields:
- Communications Technicians
- Computer Aided Design (CAD) Operators
- Laser Technicians
- Quality Assurance Specialists
- Radar Technicians
- Robotic Technicians
- Satellite Technologists
Where can you find job opportunities in Space Science?
- NASA Jobs: Visit the NASA Jobs website to search open positions within the U.S. National Aeronautic and Space Administration (NASA) and to find out how to apply for federal jobs with the agency.
- ISRO Careers: Indian Space Research Organisation lists all the jobs and notification for exams at ISRO, DRDO and other related organisations. You can apply at the agency.
- Space Careers Job Board: The SpaceCareers.com job board has a wealth of information beneficial to individuals seeking space science career opportunities. All postings on this board are for positions working directly in space science, or performing services for companies that specialize in providing goods and services for the aerospace industry. Qualified professionals can register and post their resumes to this site and search through the listings of open positions. Employers may search resumes and post their job announcements.
- Space Individuals: This job board provides listings of available jobs with space companies throughout the world. To review job openings, you will need to select the country you are interested in working in, and from there you can scroll through available positions. You can also register with the site to receive free emails twice per month that contain information about new job listings, employers in the space industry, articles of interest to those who are pursuing career opportunities in the industry.
Courses to make a career in Space Science:
- B.E Space Technology
- B.Tech Avionics Engineering
- B.Tech Space Technology
- M.Tech Cryogenic Engineering
- Diploma in Space Technology
Best Colleges in India for Space Science and Technology
- Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology, Kerala (This will also allow you to get into ISRO)
- Aryabhatta Knowledge Institute of Science and Technology, Bihar
- Birla Institute of Technology, Jharkhand
- Sri Venkateswara University, Andhra Pradesh
- Admission into Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology (IIST) is made on the basis of ranks obtained in the Joint entrance Examination conducted by IITs. All the candidates who are placed in the extended list of IIT JEE are eligible to apply in the first phase.
- The candidates who are qualified with an IIT JEE Rank will be eligible to apply in the second phase (after the completion of IIT seat counseling), provided they have not selected an IIT seat. A combined merit list, using the above, will be generated for counseling for admission.
- The minimum education qualification for joining bachelor programs in Space Science at IIST is 10+2 Science with Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics.
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