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/u/JeffHoffman on I am Jeff Hoffman, MIT Professor of Aerospace Engineering and former NASA Astronaut. Ask Me Anything!

19 Feb 2015, 19:30 UTC
/u/JeffHoffman on I am Jeff Hoffman, MIT Professor of Aerospace Engineering and former NASA Astronaut. Ask Me Anything!
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Every astronaut needs to handle the risk of what he/she is about to do when climbing on top of a few million tons of high explosive! You will find some astronauts who don't like launches because of the risk. For me, I know how much time we have spent training for all the problems that can occur during launch, and I have full confidence that if something happens that we can deal with, I have full confidence that we can deal with it. Of course, there are many things that can happen that are beyond our control. My attitude has always been, "If I can't do anything about it, then why worry about it?" Riding a rocket is exciting, and I don't want to waste emotional energy worrying about things over which I have no control. But, of course, this is a rational answer, and fear is not rational. So I would say you need the right personality. If riding a rocket causes you excessive emotional stress, perhaps you are in the wrong line of work!

Every astronaut needs to handle the risk of what he/she is about to do when climbing on top of a few million tons of ...

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