After previously declaring that the “old continent” was looking for a few good astronauts, it looks as if the ESA has sifted the 10,000 individuals who applied to be astronauts, and after many trials have reduced that number to a mere 192.
(ESA) Following a first stage of psychological testing, there are now only 192 highly talented individuals still in with a chance of becoming the new astronauts in ESA’s European Astronaut Corps.
This first stage of computer-based psychological testing finished at the end of August and consisted of tests to evaluate the cognitive capabilities of the candidates, such as tests of memory, psycho-motor test, multitasking, linguistic skills, and various forms of visualisation-based tasks. […]
Almost 10 000 people originally registered as astronaut candidates through the ESA website prior to the closing date of applications on 18 June 2008, of which 8413 fulfilled the initial application criteria. From these individuals 918 were chosen to take part in the first stage of psychological testing.
Despite the “small” number, the ESA plans on reducing the ranks again after a second round, with several more after to reduce the group of 192 to just four astronauts!
Hopefully the ESA will consider keeping the resume’s of the 192 (or at least 100 of them), as they are going to need more people if they are serious about conquering both the Moon and Mars.