NASA has put up a job opening on the US Government’s website that sounds straight out of an alien Sci-Fi movie. NASA is searching for a ‘Planetary Protection Officer’ whose job role requires the person to safeguard the Earth from alien Life, lest there be any. The role offered by NASA involves several-fold objectives, including maintaining the natural states of the other worlds that humans explore and preventing any such explored environment from getting contaminated by Earthly microbes. Even more ‘galactic-superhero’ type responsibility is to protect the Earth’s biosphere from alien life if it exists anywhere.
The entire role of the Planetary Protection Officer is to promote responsible exploration of the Universe by humans. To achieve this, the NASA Officer needs to consider various aspects of a mission like ensuring a sterile spacecraft used for space exploration, developing plans to protect Earth and other planetary bodies from extra-terrestrial samples. The Planetary Protection Officer can also form norms for space plans to ensure these goals are met.
The initial appointment for the job will be for a tenure of 3 years, with a possibility of a 2-years extension. NASA is offering a salary of up to $187,000 for the job to the eligible candidates. Job requirements mention frequent travelling and a possible one-year probation period. Selected candidates must also present a complete financial disclosure statement.
NASA has given a ‘Secret’ level security clearance to the job role. The position is being offered to the US citizens holding a degree in physical science, engineering or mathematics. Though the job was first published on the website on July 13, it recently gained Internet attention when NASA posted it on its Twitter profile.
NASA has also tweeted in reply to the latest buzz surrounding the job, posting a video mentioning the job profile and its key responsibilities.
Lots of buzz today about our Planetary Protection Officer position, check out what our office actually does! https://t.co/fp5KUe7UpT pic.twitter.com/Tf8fEYZqpc— NASA People (@NASApeople) August 2, 2017
No matter who gets the job, one thing is for certain, the person filling in the job opening will be one of the firsts to know of alien life if humans ever come across one.