Get Ready! The 2020 Out Astronaut Phase-1 Contest will be announced shortly!

Eligibility:

The Out Astronaut Contest is a three-phase competition that is open to those who are part of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer (LGBTQ) community and are involved in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) fields. We are looking for individuals who openly embrace their role in the LGBTQ community, want to serve as role models to LGBTQ youth, and become representatives of their community as pioneers of astronautical science. Contestants shall also meet the following requirements:

 

  • Age at time of application: 18-39 years
  • Residency: US, Canada, Mexico, Caribbean, or Central America
  • Bachelors Degree or currently enrolled in an accredited degree program
  • Ability to obtain an FAA Class III Flight Physical (or equivalent)

 

Read more on applicant and contestant rights at the Applicant Bill of Rights

Phase One:

GOAL: Hold annual competitions to encourage LGBTQ-identified individuals in the STEM fields to share their stories publicly and in doing so create visibility and representation.

Project PoSSUM has committed a full scholarship for one individual’s tuition to attend the Advanced PoSSUM Academy this September 2020, including lodging and round-trip flight and other travel costs for winning candidate. APPLY BY 15 AUGUST 2020

ContestBegin DateDeadline
Application Period12 April 20201 September 2020
Voting Period1 August 20201 September 2020
Finalist Down-select Process1 September 20208 September 2020
Award Announcement8 September 2020
PoSSUM Astrodynamics and Space Flight Operations Training
PoSSUM Astrodynamics and Space Flight Operations Training
PoSSUM Suborbital Simulation Configured for Noctilucent Cloud Tomography Missions
PoSSUM Suborbital Simulation Configured for Noctilucent Cloud Tomography Missions
PoSSUM Basic Space Suit Training
PoSSUM Basic Space Suit Training

Phase One Evaluation Criteria:

Determining the Contest Winners: the Out Astronaut Project Executive Team and LGBTQ Advisory Committee will decide the winning contestant based a popular contest and an assessment of the contestant’s 1) Personal interview, 2) merit of the design of their experiment, 4) assessment of candidates ability to be a LGBTQ role model and astronautics professional, and 4) video submission. The award winner will receive an all-expense paid trip to attend the October 2019 Advanced PoSSUM Academy Program at Florida Tech in Melbourne, Florida.

 

Phase One Award Breakdown: 1) All finalists will receive an Out Astronaut Project T-Shirt and a Project PoSSUM Scientist-Astronaut Manual. 2) The award winner selected from this group will receive an all-expense paid trip to attend the September 2020 Advanced PoSSUM Academy Program at Florida Tech in Melbourne, Florida.

Are you Ready to Apply?

Are you Ready to Vote?

Phase Two:

GOAL: Educate Out Astronaut ‘scientist-astronaut candidates’ that have won initial competitions to a level of credibility in scientific fields related to astronautics through the International Institute of Astroanutical Sciences, parent organization of Project PoSSUM. It is essential that our candidates are respected as scientists and/or science enablers rather than as passengers or tourists.

The Out Astronaut Project is currently seeking donations and sponsorship to support Phase Two of the project. This phase will fund four individuals, including the Phase One winner, to attend the year-long IIAS Applied Astronautics Program. In addition to tuition, the winning candidates will receive round-trip airfare, lodging, and other travel expenses. We need to raise $75K to make this happen.

ContestBegin DateDeadline
Application Period15 November 201931 January 2020
Finalists Selected1 February 2020
Award Announcement5 February 2020
ContestBegin DateDeadline
Spaceflight Physiology, Celestial Navigation, and Aerospace Environment Training5 February 202015 April 2020
Introduction to Applied Astronautics (Advanced PoSSUM Academy at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University)1 April 202015 April 2020
Spacecraft Egress and Post-landing Training and Operational Research (In Groton, CT)15 April 202030 April 2020
Airborne High-Altitude Noctilucent Cloud Research and Data Analysis (in High Level, AB)15 June 20201 August 2020
Life Support Systems and Research Methods Training1 August 202030 September 2020
Microgravity Space Suit Evaluation (with the National Research Council of Canada)1 October 202015 November 2020
Award Announcement for Suborbital Flight Opportunity15 December 2020

If less than the $75K is raised by the deadline to start the training program for 2020, then funding will first be given to the Phase One winner to complete their training. The other three winning candidates will be trained in 2020 as funding permits or deferred to 2021.

BIO 103: Microgravity space suit evaluation
BIO 103: Microgravity space suit evaluation
AER 103: Airborne Noctilucent Cloud Imagery
AER 103: Airborne Noctilucent Cloud Imagery
BIO 104: Space SuIt Post-landing Evaluation
BIO 104: Space SuIt Post-landing Evaluation

Want to Help?

Phase Three:

GOAL: Fly one qualied OUT Scientist-Astronaut Candidate to space on a commercial suborbital spacecraft (e.g. Blue Origin, Virgin Galactic) to conduct experiments and see the investigations through to publication.

In Phase Three, the Out Astronaut Project will seek sponsorship to support one LGBTQ scientist-astronaut candidate to fly to space and do meaningful research of global importance. We need to raise $250K additional to make this happen.