NASA astronaut explains the ‘honor’ and ‘task’ of ballot in area

NASA astronaut Kate Rubins, the only American not on the world, stated the experience of ballot in area is unique.

” It’s an honor for us,” she stated in action to a concern from Fox News throughout an interview from the International Spaceport Station on Friday.

Rubins, who cast her vote from the ISS on Oct. 22, explained voting as a responsibility. “We feel extremely fortunate to vote from area,” she included.


” It’s in fact quite comparable to the procedure of ballot by absentee tally from house,” the astronaut described. She kept in mind that the Federal Postcard Application (FPCA) that astronauts utilize is the exact same that military workers and their households utilize when they are overseas. “I do not understand that I am technically overseas,” she quipped. “The tally is secured to us – we send it pull back.”

The astronaut utilized her little team quarters on the orbiting area laboratory as a ballot cubicle, total with a makeshift indication.

NASA astronaut Kate Rubins outside the voting booth on the International Space Station.

NASA astronaut Kate Rubins outside the ballot cubicle on the International Spaceport Station.

NASA has a slogan of “vote while you float” for astronauts.

” Like other kinds of absentee ballot, voting from area begins with a Federal Postcard Application, or FPCA,” NASA states on its website “It’s the exact same kind military members and their households complete while serving beyond the U.S. By finishing it ahead of their launch, spaceport station team members indicate their intent to take part in an election from area.”

Once the FCPA is authorized, the county clerk who handles elections in the astronaut’s house county sends out a test tally to a group at NASA’s Johnson Area Center. A spaceport station test computer system is then utilized to check whether it can be submitted and returned to the county clerk.


” After an effective test, a safe and secure electronic tally produced by the clerk’s workplace of Harris County and surrounding counties in Texas, is uplinked by Johnson’s Objective Control Center to the ballot team member,” NASA states. “An e-mail with team member-specific qualifications is sent out from the county clerk to the astronaut. These qualifications enable the team member to access the safe and secure tally.”

” The astronaut will then cast their vote, and the safe and secure, finished tally is downlinked and provided back to the County Clerk’s Workplace by e-mail to be formally taped,” NASA includes. “The clerk has their own password to guarantee they are the only one who can open the tally. It’s a fast procedure, and the astronaut needs to make sure to send it by 7 p.m. regional time on Election Day if ballot as a Texas citizen.”

In 2016, NASA astronaut Shane Kimbrough, who at the time was the only American not on the world, voted in the governmental election from the ISS.

The system was very first utilized in 1997 for previous astronaut David Wolf when he was flying a long-duration objective on the old Russian spaceport station Mir. Due to the fact that Wolf’s objective covered Election Day, the procedure was established to allow him to enact area, NASA explained


Rubins likewise enacted area 4 years earlier throughout a 115-day stint on the drifting area lab, casting a tally prior to her return to Earth on Oct. 30, 2016.

The astronaut’s newest stint on the spaceport station began on Oct. 14, when she reached the orbiting area laboratory after a “fast-track” journey on a Russian Soyuz spacecraft. Her newest objective on the ISS is set up to last 6 months.

The astronaut and her fellow spaceport station crewmembers, Russian cosmonauts Sergey Ryzhikov and Sergey Kud-Sverchkov, utilized Friday’s interview to go over the upcoming 20th anniversary of the orbiting area laboratory. Nov. 2 marks the 20th anniversary of people living and working constantly on the International Spaceport Station.


” For me, the work within here, it feels fantastic,” stated Rubins. “It resembles I was back here in 2016.”

The Associated Press added to this post. Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers

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