NASA, the US Space agency, announced on 17 June 2013 that it had selected eight new NASA astronaut candidates, out of which 4 are women. It is important to note that this is the highest percentage of female astronauts chosen by NASA for any class in its history.
All these eight new astronauts were publically named, just a day before the 30th anniversary of Sally Ride's first flight aboard Challenger which had launched her as first American woman to fly in space.
The eight astronauts were chosen from among a total of 6000 applications which were received by NASA in 2012. This was the second highest number of applications received by NASA. The new astronauts will report in August 2013 at the Johnson Space Centre in Houston for their duty. These eight new astronauts will join 49 other astronauts who are at present deployed at the agency.
These eight new astronauts are:
• Josh Cassada
• Victor Glover
• Tyler Hague
• Christina Hammock
• Nicole Aunapu Mann
• Anne McClain
• Jessica Meir
• Andrew Morgan