The U.S. space agency is currently hiring a planetary protection officer and is offering a salary between $124,406 and $187,000 per year.
The job involves preventing alien microbes from contaminating the Earth, as well as making sure human explorers do not harm other planets and moons they are trying to explore.
“Planetary protection is concerned with the avoidance of organic-constituent and biological contamination in human and robotic space exploration,” NASA wrote in the job posting.
“NASA maintains policies for planetary protection applicable to all space flight missions that may intentionally or unintentionally carry Earth organisms and organic constituents to the planets or other solar system bodies, and any mission employing spacecraft, which are intended to return to Earth and its biosphere with samples from extraterrestrial targets of exploration.”
According to Business Insider, the planetary protection position was created after the U.S. ratified the Outer Space Treaty of 1967. Part of the international agreement is that any space mission must have a less than 1-in-10,000 chance of contaminating an alien world.
If you’re hoping to apply for this job, there is a daunting qualifications list.
- Advanced knowledge of planetary protection.
- At least one year of experience as a top-level civilian government employee.
- Advanced degree in physical science, engineering or mathematics.
The job also comes with a secret security clearance.
Catharine Conley currently holds the position as NASA’s planetary protection officer.
Applications are open until Aug. 14, 2017. The post is for an initial period of three years, though may be extended for an additional two.