Joe Walker was a NACA and NASA test pilot who flew the X-15 aircraft twice above 100 km, which FAI uses their definition of an astronaut. Flight 90 achieved 106.01 km, and flight 91 reached 107.96 km. The speed of both flights at 100 km was only a few hundred meters per second.

Even though he was never in an astronaut training program, does NASA consider Walker to be an astronaut? ("NASA" meaning any facility, website, or publication officially controlled by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and "consider" meaning an official acknowledgement or inclusion in a list of astronauts.)

Joeseph Walker

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    $\begingroup$ According to the Wikipedia entry for him, he is a "USAF/NASA astronaut". $\endgroup$
    – Fred
    Mar 18, 2021 at 0:47
  • $\begingroup$ @RussellBorogove: Thanks, clarification added. $\endgroup$
    – DrSheldon
    Mar 18, 2021 at 3:07
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    $\begingroup$ @DrSheldon related just means related. Sometimes I say "related but different" but in this case no need because the difference is already self-evident. My comment has the following purposes: 1) once the link is present in a comment or pst, it is added to the "Related" column here, and this question is added to the "Related" column at those questions. 2) The linked pages have helpful information and linked sources about space history that may aide answer authors here. $\endgroup$
    – uhoh
    Mar 18, 2021 at 3:50
  • $\begingroup$ Also from the Wikipedia entry for him, "On August 23, 2005, NASA officially conferred on Walker his Astronaut Wings, posthumously." $\endgroup$ Mar 18, 2021 at 16:45


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