10 disgusting facts about space travel

10 disgusting facts about space travel


The idea of traveling in space seems attractive. Many of us dreamed of becoming astronauts or even the first people on Mars, someone in his childhood, and someone still. Who wouldn’t want to reach for the stars? And there are a few facts that may force us to reconsider, or at least to think about. It turns out that space is not only difficult and uncomfortable, it’s unpleasant. Before you ten disgusting facts about space travel that you may have well prepared.

NASA doesn’t know what to do with the astronauts who died in space

NASA has no clear plans on what to do with the bodies of astronauts who die in space. In fact, NASA generally does not expect that the astronauts might die in space, so does not specify how to act in case of death of colleagues. But what happens if an astronaut dies in space? It’s quite possible, especially in the case of long missions, e.g. to Mars.

One option is to send the body into space. But this is not an option, because the United Nations prohibits the dumping of debris (including bodies) in space due to concerns that he may face a spacecraft or contaminate other planets. Another option is to keep the body inside a space ship and burn for return to Earth. Again, this is not an option: it can endanger the lives of other astronauts. Last option: if humans ever colonize Mars, the body can be used as fertilizer. However, the question remains whether people can be good fertilizer.

NASA is currently working with a funeral company Promesse, which develops Body Back. The corpse will be sealed in air-tight sleeping bag and secured to the outside of the spacecraft, where he was exposed to the cold of space. The body will freeze, subjected to vibration and will break into many small particles as the movement of the apparatus through space. By the time I returned to Earth from an astronaut’s body will be only a tiny speck of dust.

Astronauts drink recycled urine

Access to fresh drinking water in space could be problematic. American astronauts on the International space station get most of the water by recycling and recovery in the system presented in 2009. As the name implies, the recovery system water allows astronauts to recover most of the fluid they lose in sweat and urine, while shaving or making coffee.

American astronauts didn’t simply recycle their own urine. They also disposed of the urine of the astronauts, because the Russians refused to drink this water. According to lane Carter, Manager of the water subsystem for the ISS, the recycled water tastes no different from bottled.

Astronauts lose muscle and bone mass and age prematurely

The conditions of microgravity in space astronauts lead to premature aging. The skin ages faster and becomes thinner and drier, begins’t complain. Bones and muscles also weaken. Astronauts lose 1% of muscle mass and 2% of bone mass each month spent in space. For four to six months on the International space station the loss is about 11% of the mass of the femur.

Even the arteries suffer. They become stiffer, which threatens heart attacks and strokes in astronauts. Canadian Robert Thirsk has suffered from weak, fragile bones and problems with balance, after spending six months in space. He said that on his return to Earth felt like a man. Premature aging is now considered as one of the side effects of space travel. And never be away from him, although the astronauts can reduce the effect by exercising for several hours a day.

Space travel can make a barren

There are suggestions that long-term space missions make astronauts infertile. In one experiment, male rats were suspended above the floor for six weeks, simulating the weightlessness of outer space, resulting in their testes decreased as the number of sperm, effectively dictating infertility. Female rats suffered similar or even worse fate when they were sent into space. The ovaries of the rats had stopped working after 15 days. By the time I returned to the Land of the gene responsible for production of estrogen, work wear, and the cells that produce eggs, have died.

Space travel is also associated with loss of libido. In one experiment, two males and five females of mice that were sent into space, and refused to mate. However, some scientists insist that space is not related to libido or infertility. Eggs of fish and frogs, sent into space, was able to fertilize, although the offspring of frogs remained in the phase of tadpoles. Male astronauts have also conceived children with his wives after a few days upon return to Earth.

With women a similar situation. They also became pregnant shortly after returning from space missions, although they had a higher chance of miscarriage. The impact of space travel on reproduction remains controversial and, for obvious reasons studied very hard. NASA has abandoned attempts to count the number of sperm in astronauts returning from space, for privacy reasons.

Most astronauts get sick in space

Despite the achievements in space exploration, “space sickness” remains a headache for NASA. More than half of all astronauts sent into space, collide with nausea, headache, vomiting and General discomfort. All this causes space sickness, also called space adaptation syndrome. Of the famous astronauts, faced with the disease space, it is possible to call Jake Garnier, who felt the symptoms before departure from Earth. When he returned he could barely walk.

Space sickness Garnier was leaking so hard that his name became the informal scale measuring the extent of the disease. Astronauts appreciate the gravity of their suffering phrases like “single ADJ”, “two Garnier”, “three Garnier” and so on. While NASA is looking for a solution to the issue of space sickness, the forces of the engineers of the Agency was created early warning device, if the astronauts get sick in space.

All astronauts wear diapers

NASA missed something in the design of the first suit. It turned out, the scientists forgot that the astronauts may have to go to the toilet in the suit. This omission has led to the fact that Alan Shepard, first American in space, went directly under him while in the suit. And it happened only after the permission, as NASA scientists feared that the urine may lead to a short circuit of electrical components of the suit.

To prevent such scenarios in future missions, NASA invented a device according to the type of condom that astronauts wore fully in the suit. For obvious reasons, when in the space left by American women in the 1970-ies, they were having problems, so the Agency had to develop a system for the distribution of urine and feces called DACT. DACT has used people of both sexes, but did it especially for women.

In 1988, NASA had replaced the DACT on the MAG — in fact, diapers for adults similar to shorts. Each astronaut is issued three such MAG per mission. One worn during a spacewalk, one return, and the third just in case.

The space will have to masturbate

Astronauts are always at risk of inflammation of the urinary tract and other diseases while in space. Men are likely to end up with prostatitis and women will get a urinary tract infection. From 1981 to 1998, 23 of 508 NASA astronaut sent into space, faced problems with urination. Although this statistic suggests that urogenital diseases affect only a small percentage of astronauts to close their eyes to these problems will not work, because they can lead to the termination of the space flight.

The Soviet Union found that out in the strongest terms, when in 1985 cosmonaut Vladimir Vashutino had to return to Earth after only two months of the planned six. Vladimir was tormented by severe prostatitis, which cause fever, nausea and severe pain when urinating.

Marjorie Jenkins, medical Advisor to NASA, clarified that prostatitis can be one of the consequences of reduction of ejaculation. When men do not eyakulyat often enough, bacteria can accumulate in the prostate gland and cause an infection.

Unknown, do astronauts masturbate in space flight, but that doesn’t mean they didn’t do it. A Russian astronaut once said that “sex with hand” while in space. In 2012, astronaut Ron Garan said on Reddit that the astronauts do get a bit of free time on the International space station. When he was asked to explain, he said, “I can only speak for myself, but we’re professionals.”

Emergency in space doesn’t exist.

NASA has no sophisticated medical equipment on Board the spacecraft, or even the ISS. All I have is drugs and basic equipment first aid. Astronauts do not cure anything, except a patch of plantain with an analgesic. What to do if the astronaut will become very ill or even need surgery?

When that happens, NASA requires that astronauts sent back to Earth. NASA has an agreement with the Russian space Agency, which for the salvation of the sick astronauts from the ISS are launched an emergency “Unions”. In addition to the sick astronauts, the rocket will return with two astronauts since the crew of three. This trip will cost hundreds of millions of dollars, and a seriously ill astronaut may not even survive the journey.

If NASA goes through all this only in order to pick up a sick astronaut with the “nearest” ISS, what will happen when the need to help the astronaut on the way to Mars? National space biomedical research Institute (NSBRI) is funding several agencies brings unique medical equipment that can cope with serious illnesses like heart attacks and appendicitis in space.

Drugs in space are less effective

We mentioned that medical care, available to astronauts in space, qualifies as first aid. But even with all this, most of the available drugs are not as effective as on Earth. In one study, scientists completed the first eight kits 35 different drugs, including sleeping pills and antibiotics. Four kits were sent to the International space station, and the other four were stored in a special chamber in the Space center. Johnson in Houston.

After 28 months of preparations, sent to ISS, was less effective than those that were stored at the space center. Six of the drugs, as it turned out, also melted or discolored. Scientists believe that the loss effectively connected with excess vibration and radiation, which drugs are faced in outer space. Now NASA has reduced the seriousness of this problem, delivering fresh medication to the ISS every six months. In the future, astronauts will be given all the necessary ingredients for the production of drugs in space.

Poisoning with carbon dioxide can be a problem

The concentration of carbon dioxide in the ISS increased. On Earth СО2составляет concentration of about 0.3 mm Hg. article, but can reach 6 mm Hg. article on the ISS. Adverse side effects, such as headaches, irritation and sleep problems, which has become the norm among astronauts, are just a few of the consequences of increased concentration of carbon dioxide. In fact, most of the astronauts complain of headaches at the beginning of their missions.

Unlike Earth, where carbon dioxide is leaving the body, dissipated in the air exhaled by the astronauts, the gas forms a cloud above their heads. On Board the ISS have special fans that blow these clouds dissipate and the object. But the gas concentration is still above the recommended. Hopefully, by the time of sending humans to Mars, the solution will be found.