Mexican scientist to fly in first-ever Latin American space mission

The UNAM scientist will participate in a suborbital space flight

Mexican scientist to fly in first-ever Latin American space mission
ESAA-01 EX SOMINUS AD ASTRA will be the first space travel manned by a group of Latin American astronauts - Photo: Taken from UNAM DGCS's website
English 23/09/2020 11:06 Newsroom Mexico City Actualizada 11:06

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José Alberto Ramírez Aguilar, a scientist from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), was chosen to represent Mexico during the “ESAA-01 EX SOMINUS AD ASTRA,” the first space travel manned by a group of Latin American astronauts.

“I’m willing to perform a worthy role. My whole education and knowledge are focused on helping the mission, in the part of onboard experiments, communications, and logistics involved,” said the member of the UNAM’s School of Engineering (FI).
 

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The objective of this suborbital spaceflight, under the LATCOSMOS-C program, is to train the experts in addition to showing the capacity and effectiveness of the evolution of space technology in Latin America, as said the chief of the Aerospace Engineering Department of the FI’s High Technology Unit (UAT)

The doctor in Technical Sciences by the Moscow Aviation Institute explained that a suborbital mission is launched toward the Kármán line, that is, the limit of the atmosphere and outer space to, then, go back down almost immediately, only after 10 minutes in which the crew will be in charge of experimenting with microgravity.

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ESAA-01 will travel at 80km high, with the detachment of the rocket and the capsule where the astronauts will travel. The latter will keep flying up to 105 km to then descend and return to the atmosphere at hypersonic speed; later on, the astronauts will deploy the parachutes to land.

If the microgravity experiments work as expected, said the Electronic Engineer by the School of Higher Studies Cuautitlán, they will be proposed to the astronauts’ countries of origin, for which there would be calls to the corresponding scientific communities, as informed by the UNAM in a statement.

After the mission concludes, the UNAM scientist will man, along with three other astronauts, another suborbital mission that will travel over 100km high on board of the New Shepard rocket, based on the first U.S. manned mission in 1961 by astronaut Alan Shepard, who performed a vertical take-off and landing.
 

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For his part, Ecuadorian commander Nader Bello declared that Ramírez Aguilar was the first expert to be selected to partake in the mission: “He is a natural and he has the whole academic, technical, and scientific profile required to be part of the crew.” In addition, he added that his role as a UNAM professor grants him credibility since it is “a renowned university beyond our region.”

Waiting to take off, the crew must get physically ready and cover the requirements, such as a highly developed academic profile, having good health, being less than 1.95 m and 95 kg.

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