For Rubio, the flight engineer on this mission, this will be his first space trip. A trained family physician, he also has experience as a flight surgeon. That means he has the chops to handle any medical issues that may arise while traveling.
A native of Florida, Rubio joined NASA in 2017. Prior to his acceptance into the Astronaut Corps, he graduated from the United States Military Academy and received a Doctor of Medicine degree in Health Sciences from Uniform Service College. He has over 600 hours of combat experience in countries such as Bosnia, Afghanistan and Iraq. Rubio was born in California and his mother lives in El Salvador, but he considers Miami his hometown, according to NASA.
When Rubio and the Russian astronauts arrive at the space station, they are teamed up with astronauts from the United States, Russia, and Europe. The space station, which has been continually occupied by people since 2000, has been designed to maintain the space station hardware and to maintain sufficient astronauts in orbiting laboratories at all times to keep a long log of space. , holds a crew rotation base. Base experiment is working.
The fact that Rubio is going into space on a Russian Soyuz capsule is worth noting.
The history of human migration to the International Space Station began with Russia and the United States each having their own rockets to transport citizens to the ISS, which became a symbol of post-Cold War cooperation in the late 20th century. rice field. Early 2000s. But after NASA retired the space shuttle program in 2011, Russia’s Soyuz her capsule became the only option for US astronauts. NASA is paying up to $90 million for seats on Soyuz spacecraft.
But after years of sharing vehicles in Russia’s Soyuz spacecraft before SpaceX came along, one of the big questions that has surfaced is whether the US and Russia will continue to have astronauts on ISS missions side by side. was.
Rubio traveled to Russia to train with Russian cosmonauts prior to this mission, as many US astronauts had done before him.
CNN’s Christine Fisher contributed to this story.