NASA is accepting applications for mission specialist and pilot astronaut candidates to join the 2004 Astronaut Candidate Class.

To obtain an application package, call the Astronaut Selection Office in Houston at: 281/483-5907; or write to the Johnson Space Center, Astronaut Selection Office, Mail Code AHX, Houston, Texas 77058-3696. Application forms and additional information about the Astronaut Candidate Program are available electronically through the Astronaut Selection Office Web site at:

Typically, successful applicants for the mission specialist astronaut positions have significant qualifications in engineering or science, while pilot candidates must have extensive experience flying high-performance jet aircraft.

Following an intensive six-month period of evaluation and interviews, the final selections will be announced in early 2004. Astronaut candidates will report to the Johnson Space Center during the summer of 2004 to begin the basic training program to prepare them for future spaceflight assignments.

The application deadline is July 1, 2003. Applications received after July 1 will not be considered for the 2004 class but will remain on file for subsequent selection cycles.

The Astronaut Candidate Class of 2004 also will include educator astronauts, teachers who will join NASA’s astronaut corps and encourage students to pursue studies in math and science. The Educator Astronaut Program (EAP) was announced in January, and applications closed April 30. More than 1,100 EAP applications have been processed.

Information about the Educator Astronaut Program is available on the Internet at: