JERUSALEM (JTA) – Ten years after the death of Ilan Ramon on the space shuttle Columbia, Israel says it’s ready to train a new astronaut.
Israel Space Agency chairman Yitzhak Ben Israel said Wednesday that the agency is in talks with international space agencies to place an Israeli astronaut on the International Space Agency in coming years. It could take several years to select and train an Israeli astronaut.
Ben Israel made the announcement at the eighth annual International Space Conference, being held this week in Herzliya.
Ramon, Israel’s first astronaut, died in February 2003, when Columbia exploded over Texas as it reentered the Earth’s atmosphere for landing.