This Dec. 18, 2009 picture made available by NASA shows Mark T. Vande Hei. NASA's mighty astronaut corps has become a shadow of what it once was. And it's only going to get smaller. It's down to 60 ... more 
This Dec. 18, 2009 picture made available by NASA shows Mark T. Vande Hei. NASA's mighty astronaut corps has become a shadow of what it once was. And it's only going to get smaller. It's down to 60 from an all-time high of 149 just a decade ago, with more departures coming once Atlantis returns this week from the very last space shuttle voyage. Vande Hei anticipates flying to the space station in the middle of this decade, and he'd jump at the chance to fly to an asteroid in 2025. That's the favored destination of the Obama administration, to be followed up with a trip to Mars in the 2030s. (AP Photo/NASA, Bill Stafford) less 
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Associated Press | Photo By NASA, Bill Stafford
Sun, Jul 17, 2011 1:49 PM EDT