Personally, I thought that astronauts could do a lot of things in the great outer space. However, contrary to that belief, there are a lot of things that astronauts can’t do in outer space. The lack of gravity plays a big role in this. I’ve seen a lot of astronauts’ vlogs on how they live their daily lives and I must say, I wouldn’t be able to live in such circumstances. Astronauts are amazing for being able to live the way they do under those circumstances. What I’m saying is, astronauts deserve our respect. They sacrifice a lot of the normal things people do on a daily basis to journey into the unknown.
This brings a lot of people to wonder, what is it like being able to live in outer space. Is it life-threatening or is it just like a walk in the park? Well for one, Scott Kelly, a NASA astronaut, says the lack of gravity kind of makes your body feel weird. Sometimes in a good way.
For instance, high blood pressure would not be a thing since there’s no gravity to fight against. Kelly proceeds by stating that his muscles and joints feel better as well like you’re in a constant state of rest. Other times, it’s just weird like the fact that your arms would not be by your side at all times and Kelly states that it’s a little awkward to have them just float. Overall, the astronaut says that it’s not as easy as it looks, to be on a space mission for months or years on end.
Thus, let’s get into some of the daily things people do that can’t really be done in outer space:
Crying Is Not Easy
Yes, people cry in outer space. Sometimes it is because of how they miss their families and home and other times it’s just a result of laughing too much. Canadian astronaut, Chris Hadfield says that it is a little difficult to be crying in space. Due to the lack of gravity, your tears would just be stuck to your eyeballs and sometimes it’s just uncomfortable to have them stuck there. Basically, you wouldn’t be shedding your tears. So, unless you wipe it off, it’d be stuck there until it eventually breaks off and you can see your tear floating around. I’d imagine that it would be a bit uncomfortable for your vision to be blurred by a tear that won’t come out.
No Bread For Them
It’s not just bread we’re talking about here. Anything that can produce crumbs can’t be consumed in outer space. This is because those crumbs could damage the equipment or machines in the spaceship as well as be inhaled since it’s just floating around. Thus, that is why there are foods that are specially packed for astronauts. Plus, as a replacement for the bread, they use tortillas since they are easier to handle and can be stored longer. Plus, condiments like salt and pepper are also not allowed since they will float away and possibly be inhaled by the astronauts. Thus, NASA has developed liquid versions of those condiments so they can be used.
Bonus fact: Astronauts’ taste buds get messed up in outer space. This is also because of the lack of gravity and how fluids in our body flow differently. As a result, when they get back to Earth, a lot of astronauts say that food tastes stronger.
Smoking Is Not Encouraged
Of course, there would be astronauts who smoke, it’s a normal thing. However, when they’re going on a space mission, it is advisable to bring nicotine patches. Moreover, cigarettes need oxygen to burn and there is no oxygen in space except for the oxygen in their suits and spaceships or space stations. Thus, in an area with less or no oxygen, it’d be hard to even light a cigarette. The burning would go out pretty fast. Even when they opt to vape or use a disposable vape pod, it is possible but the vapours would linger in the air longer and mess up the air filters as well. So if you plan to be an astronaut, you could either quit smoking or stock up on nicotine patches.
The reasoning behind this one is more of an etiquette thing rather than a science thing. It’s just not appropriate to be drinking while you’re in space doing your job. It was banned after the public sort of got mad at the fact that astronauts were consuming alcohol in space. Nonetheless, it’s interesting to note that Buzz Aldrin, the second person to set foot on the moon, drank communion wine on the moon. Although, that never got broadcasted.
Being an astronaut is not an easy job to keep up with. Aside from the things you can’t do, you’d also have to be away from your families for long periods of time and maybe experience discomfort or difficulties in doing your tasks. Nonetheless, the astronauts we have now are doing a bang-up job.
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