Podcasters: Paul Hill, Ralph Wilkins and Dr. Jenifer “Dr. Dust” Millard host   

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is AwesomeAstronomy-150x150.png

Title : Awesome Astronomy: Britain’s First Astronaut

Organization: Awesome Astronomy

Link :


This podcast extra is our (Ralph’s!) full length interview with Dr. Helen Sharman, Britain’s First astronaut and the first woman to visit the Russian Mir Space Station in 1991. 

In this interview we discuss: 

  • ●  Tim Peake 
  • ●  Access to space during a time of no UK funding 
  • ●  The skills needed to be an astronaut 
  • ●  Training for spaceflight at Star City in Russia 
  • ●  The collapse of the Soviet Union just before launch 
  • ●  Speaking with Mikhail Gorbachev from the Mir Space Station 
  • ●  Comparing Mir to a camping trip! 
  • ●  Acclimatizing to spaceflight in the Soyuz capsule 
  • ●  Science conducted by Helen on Mir 
  • ●  The UK’s reticence to fund human spaceflight 
  • ●  NASA’s plans for missions beyond Low Earth 
  • ●  Promoting space 

Bio: Awesome Astronomy explores the frontiers of science, space and our evolving understanding of the universe.

Join Paul & Jeni for informative and fun astronomy programmes dedicated to space and astronomy news and monthly podcast extras covering hot topics and special interviews in the world of science and astronomy.

Today’s sponsor:  Big thanks to our Patreon supporters this month:  Paul M. Sutter, Chris Nealen, Frank Frankovic, Frank Tippin, Jako Danar, Michael Freedman, Nik Whitehead, Rani Bush, Ron Diehl, Steven Emert, Brett Duane, Don Swartwout, Vladimir Bogdanov, Steven Kluth, Steve Nerlich, Phyllis Foster, Michael W, James K Wood, Katrina Ince, Cherry Wood.

Please consider sponsoring a day or two. Just click on the “Donate” button on the lower left side of this webpage, or contact us at

Or please visit our Patreon page:

End of podcast:

365 Days of Astronomy

The 365 Days of Astronomy Podcast is produced by Planetary Science Institute. Audio post-production by Richard Drumm. Bandwidth donated by and wizzard media. You may reproduce and distribute this audio for non-commercial purposes. 

This show is made possible thanks to the generous donations of people like you! Please consider supporting to our show on and get access to bonus content.

After 10 years, the 365 Days of Astronomy podcast is entering its second decade of sharing important milestone in space exploration and astronomy discoveries. Join us and share your story. Until tomorrow! Goodbye!