Two first time astronauts Kayla Barron, Raja Chari join SpaceX's Crew-3 mission to visit the ISS

She will join NASA astronauts Raja Chari and Tom Marshburn along with ESA astronaut Matthias Maurer during the mission.

NASA has assigned astronaut Kayla Barron to serve as a mission specialist for the SpaceX Crew-3 mission. She will be launching into space for the first time making this her first visit to the International Space Station (ISS). The Crew-3 mission is most likely to be launched on 23 October this year. She will join NASA astronauts mission commander Raja Chari and pilot Tom Marshburn along with European Space Agency astronaut Matthias Maurer, also a mission specialist, in this SpaceX mission. Barron became an astronaut in January 2020 after completing two years of astronaut training.

SpaceX Crew-3 mission astronauts  Kayla Barron, Raja Chari, Tom Marshburn and Matthias Maurer. Image credit: NASA and ESA

SpaceX Crew-3 mission astronauts Kayla Barron, Raja Chari, Tom Marshburn and Matthias Maurer. Image credit: NASA and ESA

Both Chari and Maurer are also first-time astronauts and this will be their first space flight. Marshburn, on the other hand, has already flown to space two times.

After being postponed by a day due to bad weather, Crew-2 reached the space station on 23 April. The four astronauts of Crew-2 and Crew-3 members will spend some time, working together. The Crew-3 member will be working on the mission for a duration of six months.

Former Lieutenant Commander of the US Navy, Barron was born in Idaho, USA.  She received her Bachelor’s degree in Systems Engineering. A year later, she received a Master’s degree in Nuclear Engineering from the University of Cambridge.

Chari is from Iowa, USA and has graduated from the US Air Force Academy with a bachelor’s degrees in Astronautical Engineering and Engineering Science. He has a master’s degree in Aeronautics and Astronautics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Chari is married to Holly Schaffter has three children.

Dr Marshburn is a native of North Carolina, USA and has a Bachelor of Science in Physics from Davidson College; a Masters in Engineering Physics from the University of Virginia; a Doctorate of Medicine from Wake Forest University; and a Masters in Medical Science from the University of Texas Medical Branch. He has flown on two spaceflights — STS‐127 and Expedition 34/35. He also served as a Flight Surgeon at the Space Shuttle Medical Operations and the joint US/Russian Space Program. He went on to become the Medical Operations Lead for the International Space Station.

Maurer is the sole ESA astronaut part of this mission and only the second astronaut to fly with SpaceX. He was born in Sankt Wendel, Germany. He studied materials science and technology at Saarland University, Germany; University of Leeds, UK; the European School for Materials Technology EEIGM/INPL Nancy, France; and UPC Barcelona, Spain. Matthias served as a paramedic with the Malteser Emergency Service.

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