RIGHT STUFF, WRONG SKILLS
NASA'S SCIENTIST ASTRONAUTS

Early selections for astronauts (and cosmonauts) focused upon piloting skills rather than a scientific background.  The reasoning behind those selections was sound enough, no one had ventured above the atmosphere and it was wisely thought that military jet and test pilots would be best suited to pioneer the exploration of a new frontier.  By the mid-1960's however, there was a growing call for scientifically trained crew members to be included in later missions.  In 1965 and again in 1967, teams of scientist-astronauts were chosen by NASA, but their hope of early flight assignment was soon dashed.  In this revealing lecture, Dave explains the, at times frustrating story of these selections as well as their achievements and disappointments.  The presentation also asks the question are mission specialists today scientist-astronauts and were there ever any Soviet scientist-cosmonauts?  This lecture is based upon Dave's 2008 book NASA's Scientist Astronauts with Colin Burgess.
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Right Stuff, Wrong Skills