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NASA's new astronaut candidates

July 27, 2000 — NASA announced Wednesday, July 26 the names of 17 new astronaut candidates. The 14 men and three women are scheduled to arrive at the Johnson Space Center in August to begin training.

Selected to fill seven pilot and 10 mission specialist positions, the 2000 class marks the 18th time NASA has opened its ranks to new applicants since the "Original 7" were announced in 1959. If, after one year of training, the 17 are confirmed as astronauts they will join 164 others listed as on active duty on NASA's website.

The Class of 2000 Astronaut Candidates:

Lt. Dominic A. Antonelli (USN):
Antonelli was born in Detroit, Michigan on August 23, 1967. The Project Officer/Weapons Test Pilot for the F/A-18 Advanced Weapons Laboratory in China Lake, Antonelli is working towards his Masters in Aeronautics & Astronautics through the University of Washington.
Dr. Michael R. Barratt:
Barratt, the capsule communicator for astronaut Norm Thagard's 1995 Mir Space Station mission, the first long-duration joint US/Russian expedition to the spacecraft, is currently the International Space Station Medical Operations Lead at NASA Johnson Space Center. Born April 16, 1959, in Vancouver, WA, he received his M.D. at Northwestern University in 1985 and his M.S. in Aerospace Medicine from Wright State University in 1991.
Capt. Robert L. Behnken (USAF):
Behnken was selected in 1998 to attend the U.S. Air Force Test Pilot school at Edwards Air Force Base, CA, where he is currently stationed as an Operations Engineer for the F-22 Combined Test Force. Behnken has a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the California Institute of Technology.
Maj. Eric A. Boe (USAF):
Boe is the Deputy Chief of the Air-to-Air Missile Test Division at Eglin Air Force Base where he has helped test the AIM-9X Sidewinder short-range heat-seeking missile. Born October 1, 1964, in Miami, Florida, Boe earned his M.S. in Electrical Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology.
Lt. Cmdr. Stephen G. Bowen (USN):
Bowen was born in Cohasset, MA, on February 13, 1964. After receiving his Degree of Ocean Engineer at Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1993, he now resides in Yorktown, VA, reporting as Executive Officer of the USS Virginia.
Maj. B. Alvin Drew (USAF):
Drew is Commander of Detachment 1 of the 46th Operations Group at Eglin Air Force Base where he is responsible for planning, executing, and managing developmental and qualification flight tests of Air Force Special Operations Command (AFSOC) fixed wing aircraft and all USAF helicopters.
Andrew J. Feustel, Ph.D.:
Feustel earned his M.S. in Geophysics at Purdue University in 1991 and his Ph.D. in Seismology from Queen's University, Canada in 1995. Born August 25, 1965, in Lancaster, PA, Feustel is currently the Senior Petroleum Geophysicist for the Exxon Exploration Company in Houston, TX.
Lt. Col. Kevin A. Ford (USAF):
Ford currently resides in Lancaster, CA where he serves as the Director of Plans and Programs for the U.S. Air Force Test Pilot School at Edwards Air Force Base. Growing up in Portland, IN, he has two Masters in International Relations and Aerospace Engineering and a Ph.D.in Astronautical Engineering.
Maj. Ronald J. Garan, Jr. (USAF):
Garan is Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile Test Director for the 39th Flight Test Squadron at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida. On September 13, 1988, he was forced to eject from an F-16 when one of its engines exploded.
Maj. Michael T. Good (USAF):
Good is Operations/F-15 Weapons Test Officer for the 46th Operations Support Squadron at Eglin Air Force Base. Prior to moving to Niceville, Florida, he was raised in Parma, Ohio, and attended the University of Notre Dame where he earned his B.S. and M.S. in Aerospace Engineering.
Maj. Douglas G. Hurley (USMC):
Hurley is currently the F/A-18 Project Officer at Patuxent River Naval Air Station. In January, he was one of four recipients of the Hazelrigg Memorial Award for qualities of professionalism, leadership and team spirit.
Maj. Timothy L. Kopra (USA):
Born in Austin, Texas, Kopra received his M.S. in Aerospace Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology in 1995. He is currently part of the U.S. Army Detachment to NASA Johnson Space Center where he serves as the Vehicle Integration Test Officer.
K. Megan McArthur, Ph.D.:
McArthur is a Graduate Student Research Assistant for the Marine Physical Laboratory at Scripps Institute of Oceanography. On her personal website she says her interests are underwater acoustics and digital signal processing. McArthur expects to earn her Ph.D. in Oceanography later this year.
Karen L. Nyberg, Ph.D.:
While working towards her M.S. in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Texas, Nyberg was a member of the championship team of the Spring 1996 Reverse-Coed Intramural Volleyball Tournament. Completing her Ph.D. in 1998, Nyberg now works at the Johnson Space Center as an Environmental Control Systems Engineer.
Nicole P. Stott:
Stott was born November 19, 1962 in Albany, NY. Earning her masters degree in Engineering Management at the University of Central Florida in 1992, Stott is now a Flight Simulation Engineer at NASA Johnson Space Center.
Capt. Terry W. Virts, Jr. (USAF):
An F-16 pilot with the 22nd Fighter Squadron, Virts is stationed at Edwards Air Force Base in California. Born December 1, 1967, in Baltimore, MD, Virts has his M.A.S. in Aeronautics from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.
Lt. Cmdr. Barry E. Wilmore (USN):
Wilmore is a Test Pilot/Instructor at the U.S. Air Force Test Pilot School at Edwards Air Force Base. Born in Murfreesboro, TN on December 29, 1962, he has masters in both Electrical Engineering and Aviation Systems from Tennessee Technological University and University of Tennessee-Knoxville respectively.
The astronaut candidates will undergo a one to two-year training and evaluation period during which time they will participate in basic astronaut training program. They will be required to complete military water survival training to begin their flying syllabus and be scuba qualified to ready them for the spacewalk training.

All candidates will be required to pass a swimming test during their first month of training. They must swim "3 lengths of a 25M pool without stopping, and then swim 3 lengths of the pool in a flightsuit and tennis shoes." They must also tread water continuously form 10 minutes.

Selection as a candidate does not insure selection as a NASA astronaut. Final selection will reply on successful completion of their training.

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