By Peyton Pitman, Staff Writer
Do the names Christina Koch and Jessica Meir ring a bell? If so, you may have heard about NASA’s new space exploration project. A rocket recently launched into space on October 18 — a rocket that contained two women. These women were Christina and Jessica — the first-ever solo female travelers to conduct a spacewalk.
The walk has been in the planning process for quite a while. But not too long ago, it hit a brick wall. NASA released a statement saying that the trip for the female astronauts was canceled. Both women needed a medium-sized suit for their travels, and because the other outfits were designed to fit a male’s body type, they lacked the correct sizes.
After extensive backlash from the public, NASA designed another suit so both women could have a medium. Soon after, the spacewalk was back in preparation mode.
On October 18, history was made.
The duo launched up to the International Space Station to repair a broken power controller, and Meir had this to say about the excursion:
“The fact that I did it with another woman, and actually with my close friend and colleague Christina, really made it even more special.”
Both women agreed that their trip would leave a substantial impact on the world, especially the futures of other female astronauts. Koch and Meir shared their excitement over the hope that their achievement will inspire others to follow in their footsteps — particularly women.
Mary Robinette Kowal, the author of Lady Astronaut, said the following:
“Of the more than 560 people who have been in space around the world, only 65 have been women.”
NASA is currently working on making their exploration into the beyond a little more gender-inclusive.