NASA confirmed astronaut Kayla Barron's selection for SpaceX's Crew-3 flight. The US Navy's lieutenant commander meets Raja Chari and Tom Marshburn of the US agency and Matthias Maurer of the European Space Agency (ESA) to the International Space Station (ISS).

Kayla Barron
(Photo: NASA)

The commercial mission will launch on October 23 and will stay in space for six months. Along with German Matthias Maurer, Kayla Barron will be the next mission specialist. Marshburn, who is on his third flight, will act as a pilot, while Chari will serve as the spacecraft's commander. The space agency selected all three in December 2020.

The astronaut shared the mission sign and the names of the four crew members on one of her social media accounts.

"I am very honored and excited to join Raja Chari, Tom Marshburn and Matthias Maurer for NASA's upcoming Crew-3 SpaceX mission to the International Space Station, scheduled for release in late October. I couldn't ask for a better team or a more amazing adventure," Kayla wrote on her Instagram account.

NASA said Chari and Maurer will be making their first trip into space. Marshburn has also worked as a crew member on the space shuttle STS-127 launch in 2009 and Expedition 34/35 onboard the International Space Station, which ended in 2013.

Barron, Chari, Marshburn, and Maurer will become expedition crew members for the remainder of their six-month science mission as they arrive at the orbital laboratory. The crew will share some time with the Crew-2 astronauts, who are scheduled to arrive on April 24. This will be the second time on the station that commercial crew missions will overlap.

The Crew-1 astronauts were on board the station with the Crew-2 astronauts for a seven-day direct crew handover. As Science Times previously reported, their trip concluded earlier this month with a splashdown off the coast of Panama City, Florida. The organization will increase the number of scientific experiments performed in the special microgravity environment by increasing the cumulative number of astronauts onboard the station.

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SpaceX, the company founded by billionaire Elon Musk, will launch Crew-3 on its third mission rotation. The quartet will spend time with the Crew-2 astronauts, who launched into space on April 24, when they arrive at the orbiting station.

Who Is Kayla Barron?

This will be the 33-year-old lieutenant commander's first spaceflight since completing two years of training to become a NASA astronaut in January 2020. Born in Idaho, she graduated from the US Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, with a degree in systems engineering.

SciTechDaily said Kayla Barron also has a master's degree in nuclear engineering from Cambridge University in England. Kayla Barron is a submarine warfare officer who was one of the first batches of women to be commissioned in the submarine service.

Barron is a member of NASA's Artemis Team, a small group of astronauts tasked with overseeing the construction and preparation of early Artemis flights.

NASA and a group of international collaborators will return to the Moon as part of the Artemis initiative and learn how to survive on other planets for the good of everyone. NASA's Artemis projects will bring the first woman and next man to the Moon in 2024, and then only once a year after that.

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