by Staff Writers
Beijing (XNA) Aug 11, 2009
No scars, no history of serious illness in the last three generations of your family, and no tooth cavities - China imposes tough standards on its future astronauts.
They must be close to perfection to meet the standards set for the men and women who will lead China into outer space, Monday's China Daily reported.
Officials from the No. 454 Hospital of the People's Liberation Army in Nanjing, capital of Jiangsu province, was quoted by China Daily as saying that over the weekend they had already completed preliminary tests for candidates to carry out the country's future space missions.
The hospital is one of the five medical institutions across the country conducting the second round of tests for its second batch of astronauts.
An employee of the No. 454 Hospital, who refused to be named, said that about 100 hopefuls from the Nanjing Compound, all of whom are well-educated fighter pilots, are vying to become China's future astronauts.
These 100 candidates will also be put through about 100 tests that push them to their mental and physical limits before they can go to the next round.
The stringent requirements help ensure they will be able to deal with the tough, zero-gravity environment of space, said Shi Binbin, director of the department of air logistics at the No. 454 Hospital.
"Scars on the body, for example, might burst and bleed when spaceships are accelerating," he said.
"The candidates who go through all the tests and meet all the requirements can really be called super-human beings," Shi said.
Yang Liwei, the country's first spaceman and now the vice chief of the Beijing-based Aerospace Medical Engineering Institution, told reporters last month that China is planning to send female astronauts to the space too.
Source: Xinhua News Agency
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