For the first time in over a decade, ESA is looking for new European astronauts to join humankind’s greatest adventure, a journey of discovery for the benefit of our planet. 

In addition to the vacancy notice to recruit new members of ESA’s astronaut corps, the agency is opening a vacancy in the frame of the “Parastronaut” feasibility study to select an astronaut with a certain degree of physical disability. Furthermore, ESA is working with the international and commercial spaceflight partners to assess the possibility to fly the selected candidate(s) to the International space station on a safe and useful ESA mission. In the meantime, the selected candidate will remain part of ESA’s reserve pool of astronaut candidates.

Our new web site for potential applicants,, is now online and gives an insight into the role of an ESA astronaut, the selection requirements, astronaut training and what ESA does. A comprehensive media kit for journalists is now also available. 

Both astronaut and parastronaut vacancies run from 31 March to 28 May 2021. ESA will only consider applications submitted to the ESA Careers website within those eight weeks. After that, the six-stage selection process will start. This is expected to be completed in October 2022.

“Becoming an astronaut has been a dream come true. It brings together many of my passions: science and technology, complex machines, demanding operational environments, international teams, physical fitness, public outreach. And of course, occasionally you get to ride a rocket to work!” says Samantha Cristoforetti, current ESA astronaut, on the possibilities that lie ahead.


If you have further questions or interview requests, please contact

Further information

Upcoming events are posted on the launch calendar and events calendar at


Website for potential candidates: 

More information about ESA: