Greg “Box” Johnson, a former NASA Astronaut, becomes Space Nation’s chief space officer

A former NASA astronaut, Greg Box Johnson is to be appointed as Space Nation’s new chief space officer. The Space Nation is a Finnish startup that offers space training experiences to people all over the world. Johnson was a former NASA astronaut who will now advise the Finland based Space Nation on its astronaut program.

The program is mainly a competition to be held on a global level that guarantees to send the winner into space as well as for experimental research on the ISS (International Space Station). The former space shuttle Endeavour pilot has also visited North East Iceland for a training exercise at Space Nation in May 2018. Various other social media influencers and people with large followings for posts or blogs also took part in mental and physical challenges, which includes driving Astrobotic’s CubeRover. The training exercise will also include conducting a search and rescue exercise.

Johnson also said in a statement that he got to know about the Space Nation around 18 months ago and became very excited when he learned about their approach and objective to democratize space. He also added that joining the astronaut training exercise has taught him a lot about space and watching the earth from the space is itself a life-changing experience. The primary objective of this astronaut program by Space Nation is to mainly share this amazing and fantastic experience with people on Earth no matter at what place they live.

The global astronaut competition by Space Nation starts with a smartphone app, the Space Nation Navigator, which is designed to support people build teamwork as well as the problem-solving skills using mental and physical challenges. All the top participants will be eligible for astronaut training competitions. Anyone with the top leading score will win a ride to space.

Space Nation captain and co-founder Kalle Vähä-Jaakkola, also revealed that Space Nation is planning to buy commercial suborbital rides for the winners and to send victors on commercial orbital flights.

The astronaut training program in the Northeast Iceland organized by Space Nation was a cooperative agreement with an Icelandic space company, ICExTech, which documented field training of NASA in the same region for Apollo astronauts.

“It is a great asset for Space Nation to get an experienced astronaut like Greg on board our management team,” Vähä-Jaakkola said in a statement.