Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Day 3: Astronaut training – huh?

There will be fourteen of us. The guys are all great, half the team are french and half italian, they and I all communicate in English of varying degrees of fluency.

We will be 1000Km from the nearest human habitation, 3,200metres above sea level in temperatures that range from -30 in the summer to -85 in the winter.

The base has a temperature inside of 20 degrees C, and that means a differential of just over 100 degrees C in the depths of winter.
Planes can't land; they would freeze. Vehicles can't reach us through such hostile conditions.

So we will be more cut off than the crew of the international space station. We will be more isolated than pretty much any other human beings on the earth, except a few right at the south pole.

All of which means we really, really have to be able to get along. Because whatever happens to us out there, we're going to have to be able to fix alone.

So we're getting a condensed form of communication, conflict and teamworking training from the staff that train the european space agengy's astronauts.  

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