Speed Reads

Gender-inclusive moonwalk

NASA launches first women-led spacewalk

Women are heading to space and this time, they're doing it on their own.

In NASA's first women-led spacewalk, astronauts Anne McClain and Christina Koch will join Expedition 59 for a barrier-breaking trip later this month.

"As currently scheduled, the March 29 spacewalk will be the first with only women," NASA spokeswoman Stephanie Schierholz told CNN. "In addition to the two female spacewalkers, the Lead Flight Director is Mary Lawrence, and Jackie Kagey (also a woman), is the lead EVA (spacewalk) flight controller."

Canadian Space Agency flight controller Kristen Facciol will offer support on the ground from NASA's headquarters in Houston, Texas, CNN reported. According to NASA, the spacewalk will last about seven hours. Facciol first tweeted news of the all-woman crew, which NASA confirmed on Wednesday.

Both McClain and Koch were space trainees for NASA's 2013 Astronaut Class, which reportedly had the second largest pool of applicants. Half of the highly-selective class were women.