As much as a teacher needs to study how to become a teacher, the same applies for instructors who teach astronauts to prepare for their mission. This May, we were part of a significant change at the European Astronaut Centre (EAC/ESA) in Cologne: a new instructor training course (ITC) was launched.
The ITC is one of the pre-requisites for any instructor working at EAC as part of the International Space Station (ISS) programme. For years, EAC has been using an adapted version of the NASA ITC, with an American guest instructor coming to Cologne, running it in conjunction with ESA. However, as times change, ESA required a stand-alone course during which future instructors design and develop their teaching practice lessons.
The result of a dedicated workshop revealed that there was a need to introduce some significant changes to the timeframe of the training. In addition, the responsibility to run the ITC lies now with EAC instructors.
We are proud to say that our staff, working as instructors at the EAC, not only supported the development of this new ITC, but also were in charge of administering and delivering it for the first time. Six students – and thus future astronaut instructors – participated in this first new ITC and successfully completed it.
Small insight into our proud team at EAC, training the future astronaut trainers.
Telespazio VEGA Deutschland has been supporting the European Human Space Flight Programme for 20 years: our involvement started with an experiment we flew in cooperation with the German Space Agency (DLR) on the Mir space station in 1997. Since then, we have developed a long-term relationship with the European Astronaut Centre, ESTEC and DLR on the Columbus programme.
Theoretically, I could be an astronaut - An interview
Telespazio VEGA Deutschland in Cologne