Does my breath smell bad in this? (credit: NASA)
By Michael Banks
Astronauts are used to undergoing rigorous training for the physical and mental challenges that travelling to space brings.
Yet Chinese astronauts hoping to be part of China’s next space crew will now have to comply with an arduous 100 item health checklist that will act to quickly whittle down the number of people capable of being a “taikonaut”.
Along with having no family history of serious illnesses, aspiring Chinese taikonauts must also not suffer from drug allergies or have any tooth cavities.
Would-be taikonauts must also not have a runny nose, body odour, bad breath or have any scars that could burst open in space.
Shi Bing Bing, an official at one of the six astronaut health screening hospitals, told Reuters that the reason for the checklist is that the bad smells from the astronauts “would affect their fellow colleagues in a narrow space”.
And, finally, if a 100 item health checklist is not demanding enough, taikonauts will get nowhere unless they have permission from their spouse.