Gorilla "Invades" International Space Station; Hijinks Ensue

Gorilla "Invades" International Space Station; Hijinks Ensue

What happens when retired astronaut Mark Kelly sends his twin brother, astronaut Scott Kelly and and ISS commander, a gorilla suit for fun? Let's just call this an episode of Gorilla in the M-ISS-t.

Who said life aboard the International Space Station needs to be boring? Obviously not astronaut twins Mark and Scott Kelly.

Mark Kelly, who is now a retired astronaut, used his connections at NASA to send a care package to his brother - a gorilla suit. Scott Kelly, who is commander of the current ISS mission, decided to oblige and hijinks ensued. Mark was nice enough to tweet the onboard escapades for the world to see.

Scott is scheduled to return home next week after almost a year in space. NASA has had the rare opportunity to study the effects of space on Scott, and then compare the genomic profile changes to Mark.

"The mission will continue even after Scott returns," said John Charles, chief scientist of the NASA Human Research Program. "For the one-year mission research, we will be collecting post-flight medical data three-months and six-months after he is back on Earth. For the twins study research, we will continue to collect data as far out as a year after his return."

Whether further study includes the gorilla suit remains to be seen.

Source: Twitter

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John Keefer:
Mark was nice enough to tweet the onboard escapes for the world to see.

I think you mean escapades?

Given how getting stuff into orbit works, I wonder how many thousands of dollars were spent on rocket fuel to facilitate this.

IMHO this whole send a guy into space for a year was a waste of resources. Now before you freak, I'm For space exploration. Sending Scott Kelly into space for a year is frankly worthless. Valeri Polyakov did 14 Months straight. There are currently 3 other people who have 365 days in space in a row. We have the 1 year data. The entire ISS program at the moment is nothing but a Can to pour money in. Let's get out of Low Earth Orbit, go to the Moon, Dig in, colonize and then do the same on Mars. Enough wasting time doing the same thing over and over.

ccggenius12:
Given how getting stuff into orbit works, I wonder how many thousands of dollars were spent on rocket fuel to facilitate this.

Space X works out to $1698 per Kilo. figure 2 kilos so 3 grand.

WolfSchwarzMond:
IMHO this whole send a guy into space for a year was a waste of resources. Now before you freak, I'm For space exploration. Sending Scott Kelly into space for a year is frankly worthless. Valeri Polyakov did 14 Months straight. There are currently 3 other people who have 365 days in space in a row. We have the 1 year data. The entire ISS program at the moment is nothing but a Can to pour money in. Let's get out of Low Earth Orbit, go to the Moon, Dig in, colonize and then do the same on Mars. Enough wasting time doing the same thing over and over.

The problem is that no government on Earth would ever authorize the funding to send a manned mission back to the Moon (the US won't even fork over the money for universal healthcare, or a comparable level of education to most of Europe), and Mars just isn't there logistically quite yet. We're still a propulsion breakthrough from making it viable, and thus possible to push for politically.

Sending people to the ISS is mostly an attempt to keep manned space travel at least a tiny bit relevant. It's much harder to shut a program down if it's already up and running, and has a set infrastructure. If you stop sending people to the ISS, if you abandoned manned spaceflight even for a moment, it is going to be infinitely harder to get the funding to start it back up again later (especially with idiots like Ted Cruz on the committee that controls NASA's funding). It's more a matter of political and financial inertia than anything else at the moment.

But yeah, I completely agree that the ISS is little more than a showpiece nowadays and that we should be investing heavily into further manned space exploration. There is literally an infinite amount of raw materials just waiting to be harvested out in the asteroid belt. More common and rare metals than we could ever possibly use as a species. We need to get out there and grab them, get space-based industry up, and then funnel that newfound wealth back to Earth. Then we can use that to invest in fun projects, like colonizing Mars (which asteroid mining may make practical as a stopover point), and eventual extrasolar exploration.

rcs619:

WolfSchwarzMond:
Justified quip snip

The problem is that no government on Earth would ever authorize the funding to send a manned mission back to the Moon (the US won't even fork over the money for universal healthcare, or a comparable level of education to most of Europe), and Mars just isn't there logistically quite yet. We're still a propulsion breakthrough from making it viable, and thus possible to push for politically.

Sending people to the ISS is mostly an attempt to keep manned space travel at least a tiny bit relevant. It's much harder to shut a program down if it's already up and running, and has a set infrastructure. If you stop sending people to the ISS, if you abandoned manned spaceflight even for a moment, it is going to be infinitely harder to get the funding to start it back up again later (especially with idiots like Ted Cruz on the committee that controls NASA's funding). It's more a matter of political and financial inertia than anything else at the moment.

But yeah, I completely agree that the ISS is little more than a showpiece nowadays and that we should be investing heavily into further manned space exploration. There is literally an infinite amount of raw materials just waiting to be harvested out in the asteroid belt. More common and rare metals than we could ever possibly use as a species. We need to get out there and grab them, get space-based industry up, and then funnel that newfound wealth back to Earth. Then we can use that to invest in fun projects, like colonizing Mars (which asteroid mining may make practical as a stopover point), and eventual extrasolar exploration.

This has to be the most sober and logical evaluation of the current space industry I've come across. If we don't push for more than LEO soon, funny gorilla videos won't be enough to keep the public invested in space exploration. We need to go back to the moon. I know we've already been there but we need to remind people that we can. If we don't, mining Saturn's atmosphere for starship fuel will be something only Mass Effect player will ever do.

Idlemessiah:

rcs619:

WolfSchwarzMond:
Justified quip snip

The problem is that no government on Earth would ever authorize the funding to send a manned mission back to the Moon (the US won't even fork over the money for universal healthcare, or a comparable level of education to most of Europe), and Mars just isn't there logistically quite yet. We're still a propulsion breakthrough from making it viable, and thus possible to push for politically.

Sending people to the ISS is mostly an attempt to keep manned space travel at least a tiny bit relevant. It's much harder to shut a program down if it's already up and running, and has a set infrastructure. If you stop sending people to the ISS, if you abandoned manned spaceflight even for a moment, it is going to be infinitely harder to get the funding to start it back up again later (especially with idiots like Ted Cruz on the committee that controls NASA's funding). It's more a matter of political and financial inertia than anything else at the moment.

But yeah, I completely agree that the ISS is little more than a showpiece nowadays and that we should be investing heavily into further manned space exploration. There is literally an infinite amount of raw materials just waiting to be harvested out in the asteroid belt. More common and rare metals than we could ever possibly use as a species. We need to get out there and grab them, get space-based industry up, and then funnel that newfound wealth back to Earth. Then we can use that to invest in fun projects, like colonizing Mars (which asteroid mining may make practical as a stopover point), and eventual extrasolar exploration.

This has to be the most sober and logical evaluation of the current space industry I've come across. If we don't push for more than LEO soon, funny gorilla videos won't be enough to keep the public invested in space exploration. We need to go back to the moon. I know we've already been there but we need to remind people that we can. If we don't, mining Saturn's atmosphere for starship fuel will be something only Mass Effect player will ever do.

Wow, those Mass Effect players need to stop hoarding their advanced technology and let the rest of the world in on it.

rcs619:
The problem is that no government on Earth would ever authorize the funding to send a manned mission back to the Moon (the US won't even fork over the money for universal healthcare, or a comparable level of education to most of Europe), and Mars just isn't there logistically quite yet. We're still a propulsion breakthrough from making it viable, and thus possible to push for politically.

IIRC, China is talking about a moon mission, and I'd say that Mars isn't remotely feasible at this time, and won't be for ages.

However, I note that the cost of running an Olympics can be comparable to a space program. I vote we move the Olympics to space...maybe only run them every 10 years, and get rid of a lot of the events.

thaluikhain:

rcs619:
The problem is that no government on Earth would ever authorize the funding to send a manned mission back to the Moon (the US won't even fork over the money for universal healthcare, or a comparable level of education to most of Europe), and Mars just isn't there logistically quite yet. We're still a propulsion breakthrough from making it viable, and thus possible to push for politically.

IIRC, China is talking about a moon mission, and I'd say that Mars isn't remotely feasible at this time, and won't be for ages.

However, I note that the cost of running an Olympics can be comparable to a space program. I vote we move the Olympics to space...maybe only run them every 10 years, and get rid of a lot of the events.

So, what happens if the high jumpers reach escape velocity? Will there be guys with nets waiting in orbit? What about shotput, or any sport involving a ball?

 

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