Korean-American Astronaut to Head for the Moon

      January 14, 2020 14:03

      Jonny Kim /Courtesy of NASA

      A Korean-American is among NASA's freshest class of astronauts.

      The agency on Saturday announced 11 new astronauts including Jonny Kim, a U.S. Navy lieutenant and Harvard Medical School graduate, who will embark on missions to the Moon and, possibly, Mars as part of a program called "Artemis."

      It aims to land the first woman and another man on the Moon by 2024. Based on the lessons learned until 2028, the agency ultimately plans to send astronauts to Mars in the mid-2030s.

      Born and raised in Los Angeles, California, Kim enlisted in the Navy after graduating high school in 2002. He has completed over 100 combat operations in the Middle East and earned a Silver Star and Bronze Star for valor.

      He graduated in mathematics from the University of San Diego in 2012 and completed his medical degree at Harvard Medical School in 2016.

      The new astronauts, initially selected among some 18,000 applicants in 2017, held a graduation ceremony last week after completing more than two years of required basic training. They will be dispatched to the International Space station for more training before being assigned to the lunar mission.

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