That was 22 years ago. In November 1998, a man-made artificial satellite was sent into space by the International Space Station (ISS). This is the first time a black female astronaut is going on a long mission to ISS. Her name is Jessica Watkins.
Jessica, one of the astronauts on the SpaceX Crew-4 mission, will arrive in April next year, NASA said in a statement.
Of course, black women astronauts have set foot in space before. Not for long. May Jamieson, the first American-African woman to fly the space shuttle Endeavor in 1992.
May orbited the Earth 126 times in an Endeavor spacecraft with six companions. Spent 190 hours in space. However, the number of male and female astronauts is very low. Victor Glover Jr. went into space in November 2020. He is the first black man to stay in ISS for a long time.
In 2016, NASA responded to the story of three black women being victims of racism. The film ‘Hidden Figures’ was made about their lives that year.
The picture shows how NASA’s three black mathematicians and engineers Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughn, and Mary Jackson were subjected to gender and racism. Not long ago, in honor of Mary Jackson, NASA’s first female engineer, NASA’s headquarters in Washington DC has renamed Mary in 2020. Two years later, the first black woman to go on a long mission to the space station.
In 2016, Jessica was selected as an astronaut in a NASA test. He has been training since then. Jessica will be joined by NASA’s Jill Lindgren and Robert Hines, and the European Space Agency’s Samantha Christophoretti.
The Crew Dragon spacecraft from Elon Musk’s private space research company SpaceX will take them to the space station. With this, the vehicle will reach the passengers in space four times in phases. The four will fly from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida on a Falcon 9 rocket to a SpaceX capsule. Space will be their address for six months.
Jessica graduated from Stanford University in California with a degree in Geological and Environmental Science. He then went on to earn a master’s degree in geology from the University of California. His contact with NASA is long-standing. He has worked at NASA’s Ames Research Center and Jet Propulsion Lab.
Jessica was also involved in the NASA spacecraft Curiosity mission. The astronaut said that while studying geology, he became interested in researching the structure of the planet Vine. Especially with Mars.
Colleagues congratulated Jessica on the announcement of the names of the astronauts in space travel in 2022. NASA scientist Kathy Luders also tweeted greetings. Astronaut Johnny Kim said, one more swarm in space! Congratulations to Jessica Watkins. He will do something extraordinary in the SpaceX Crew-4 mission.