Moscow, Russia – On Wednesday, the first all-female Russian space crew will embark on a simulated eight-day moon mission. Women will now start to enter the four-decade aeronautics world that has been dominated by males up to this point. A group of six women, all aged from 22 to 34 will be responsible for about 30 scientific experiments during this simulated trip to the moon in the Institute of Biomedical Problems in Moscow.

The six women who will spend eight days in a Moon mission simulation. Credit: Institute of Biomedical Problems

Sergei Ponomaryov, the experiment’s supervisor, said, “There’s never been an all-female crew on the ISS. We consider the future of space belongs equally to men and women and, unfortunately, we need to catch up a bit after a period when, unfortunately, there haven’t been too many women in space,” as reported by the Agence France-Presse.

Researchers believe this is a huge development in the world of space missions. These women, who all have careers in medicine or biophysics, will have to endure stressful situations while several psychologists and doctors analyze their behavior. They believe that this team will act differently than an all-male team and want to evaluate how they complete different types of tasks. Women astronauts are still working toward a more active leadership role.

Russia has encouraged women astronauts before. In 1963, Valentina Tereshkova, the first woman in space, was sent on a mission by the Soviet’s. Nevertheless, since that time, they have only sent three more female cosmonauts into space.

Even though these women are all trained doctors or scientists, people are feeling skeptical about the trial mission. Doctors will be looking for signs of trouble that have already come up in previous experiments. Even the institute’s director, Igor Ushakov alleged during a press conference that the group of females will have a hard time avoiding conflicts and discussions. Furthermore, doctors can’t tell if they’ll do better, worse, or the same as all-male crews.

Team leader Yelena Luchnitskaya added, “I’m sure we all have the education, personal qualities, and the upbringing, at the end of the day. So far I can’t imagine what would rattle us.”

Even though neither the trip nor the ship are ready, Russia wants to define a crew to undergo further training. The ship will be ready in 2021 and 8 years later, in 2029 the trip will be piloted.

Source: TASS Russian News Agency