Artifacts, personal and pop cultural totems, and even the dead have begun the journey from our planet to the outer regions of the sky. We covered some strange items that went into space before. Here are 16 more unusual things that have taken a trip to the cosmos.
1. Human remains
Thanks to Celestis, a company that specializes in booking “memorial space flights”, and an agreement with the private rocket company SpaceX, the remains of several deceased were brought to the afterlife (at least for a few hours). Star Trek The remains of creator Gene Roddenberry were on the first Celestis flight in 1997. His remains flew again in 201
2. A toy dinosaur
In 2020, astronauts packed an unusual travel companion on board SpaceX’s first missions: a plush dinosaur. During the historic flight, Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley were accompanied by “Tremor”, a sparkling Apatosaurus. The crew’s sons chose the toy that acted as a zero-g indicator.
3. Actual dinosaurs
In 1985 the astronaut Loren Acton brought small pieces of bone and eggshell from the dinosaur with a duckbill Maiasaura peeblesorum together on a mission in SpaceLab 2. Thirteen years later the skull of a carnivorous Coelophysis from the Carnegie Museum of Natural History was a passenger on a trip to the Mir space station.
4. A car
In 2018 Elon Musk took the road to a whole new level. SpaceX launched a red Tesla Roadster during the test flight of the Falcon Heavy rocket. “Starman”, a mannequin in a space suit, sits in the driver’s seat of the car. Here you can follow Starman’s cosmic journey.
Many strange things have been launched in the name of science – including salmonella. Two shuttle flights to the International Space Station (ISS) included salmonella samples to determine how the bacteria would respond to low gravity, and the results were scary. When the Salmonella returned to Earth after 12 days in the Space Shuttle Atlantisthe bacteria became even more virulent. In the first study, which examined the effects of space travel on the virulence of a pathogen, bacteria that had taken up space travel killed the laboratory mice three times as often as the Salmonella, which were kept on Earth in similar conditions as possible.
Tardigraden, a.k.a. Water bears were the first animals to survive exposure to space. The eight-legged creatures usually spend their days on a damp piece of moss or like to eat bacteria or plants at the bottom of a lake, but they survived being frozen on their journey at -328 ° F or being heated to over 300 degrees in space. The water bears, which usually do not grow longer than 1 millimeter, were dehydrated by a group of European researchers for 10 days and then released into space. Back on Earth and rehydrated, 68 percent of the Tardigrades that were protected from the radiation survived. A handful without radiation protection not only came back to life, but later produced viable offspring. An “amateur Tardigrade enthusiast” theorized excitedly that the water bears would have to be of extraterrestrial origin if they could deal with such conditions, but this claim was made by the Swedish and German scientists who compensated for this by naming their experiment “Tardigrades in” “boringly denied space” or TARDIS.
Without gravity, animal sperm samples will not work as they should. By introducing bull sperm into orbit, the tiny cells moved faster than usual. In sea urchin sperm flown on NASA missions, the phosphorylation process came to a standstill when the enzyme known as protein phosphatase failed to perform its task. In 1979, two female rats that went into space became pregnant but did not give birth to the fetus and the testicles of the males shrank along with their sperm count. Fortunately (or unfortunately) a creature could breed far away from our planet: the cockroach.
8. Clear fish (medaka)
Since the organs of the medaka are clearly visible due to its transparent skin, this fish species was the obvious choice for scientists to test the effects of microgravity on marine life – and to determine why astronauts in orbit suffer from a decrease in bone density. Bones are broken down and rebuilt naturally, and osteoclasts help break down bones while they are under construction. The process becomes shaky in space, which is why astronauts go through two-hour training routines with high intensity and take vitamin D supplements. With the help of the Medaka, scientists discovered that time-consuming space exercises can be avoided. If the mechanism in bone metabolism is determined, this can lead to the development of osteoporosis treatment.
9. Soft drinks
In 1984, Coca Cola decided to put the first carbonated drink on a space shuttle. The company spent $ 250,000 on developing a can that works without gravity, the drink bubbles and doesn’t spill everywhere – and even changes part of its formula. After NASA agreed, Pepsi replied that she felt excluded. NASA then announced that any soft drink maker could participate if it created a functional container. In 1985 there were four cans of Pepsi and four cans of Coke on board the challenger;; The day sliders drank Coke, and the night owls consumed the Pepsi. They didn’t like any of the sodas.
Pizza Hut wasn’t happy with being the first company to advertise on a rocket in 2000. A year later, it paid the Russian space agency about $ 1 million to be the first company to deliver pizza to someone in space. The pizza that was delivered to cosmonaut Yuri Usachov contained a crispy crust, pizza sauce, cheese, and salami (because peppers get moldy for a period of time). Additional salt and spices were also added to compensate for the attenuation of the taste buds from space travel, and it was released in a vacuum seal. Usachov gave the pizza a thumbs up.
11. A cheese wheel
In 2010, SpaceX placed a Le Brouere cheese wheel on an unscrewed spaceship to honor the classic Monty Pythons Flying Circus Cheese business sketch. To complement the celebration of pop culture, SpaceX sealed the cheese wheel in a metal cylinder with the picture of the movie poster from the 1984 Val Kilmer film Top secret!. It was claimed that the first cheese was launched into orbit on a commercial spacecraft.
12. A corned beef sandwich
Astronaut John Young smuggled a corned beef sandwich aboard the Twins 3 in 1965. The following exchanges were recorded:
Gus Grissom: What is it?
Young: Corn beef sandwich
Grissom: Where does it come from?
Young: I brought it with me. Let’s see how it tastes. Smells, doesn’t it?
The entire incident lasted 30 seconds, with the sandwich only being eaten for 10 seconds before being put back in Young’s flight suit.
While legend has it that Yuri Gagarin was accompanied by a homemade salami sandwich in 1961, the Russians had a special vacuum kit so they could tidy up after eating to avoid clogging the shuttle equipment. The Americans should only consume tube-based foods, so Young took a certain risk on the five-hour mission. The astronaut got a strict conversation; he later landed on the moon during the Apollo 16 Mission.
In contrast to astronauts, Soviet cosmonauts went into space locked and loaded and carried a triple barrel TP-82 that could fire 40-gauge shotguns. The heavy weapon was considered necessary after 1965, when cosmonauts landed on the earth and were stranded in the Urals. The isolated cosmonauts feared that the local wolves and bears would attack them. In 2006 the TP-82 was replaced by a standard semi-automatic.
14. Buzz Lightyear
A Buzz Lightyear toy spent 467 days in space orbiting Earth on the ISS before honoring a ticker tape parade in Disney World’s Magic Kingdom. The toy’s namesake, Buzz Aldrin, was a special guest.
15. Amelia Earhart’s watch
Amelia Earhart was the first president of an international organization of licensed female pilots called The Ninety-Nines. A member of this group is the astronaut Shannon Walker, who was presented in October 2009 with a watch from current group director Joan Kerwin, which Earhart wore during her two transatlantic flights to bring the ISS on board. Of course, Earhart was the first transatlantic passenger in 1928 and flew from Newfoundland to Northern Ireland on May 20, 1932 alone. She gave her watch to H. Gordon Selfridge Jr., who passed it on to Ninety-Nines founding member Fay Gillis Wells. Kerwin bought the watch at auction.
16. A treadmill named after Stephen Colbert
Stephen Colbert, as he is used to, managed to crash an online competition. He received enough enrollment votes and technically won the right to name a room on the space station. Although NASA has reserved the right to ignore votes cast, the agency has compromised by naming its second treadmill model after it and calling it the Combined Treadmill with External Resistance (COLBERT). The manufacturer of the treadmill nickel-plated the parts and, unlike a standard treadmill, there are elastic straps that fit around a runner’s shoulders and waist so that they don’t race over the space station. The announcement was made by astronaut Sunita Williams in a series of The Colbert report;; Williams ran a marathon on the previous treadmill when he lived on the space station in 2007, and jogged while running the Boston Marathon.
17. An edition of playboy magazine
Some members of the backup crew of Apollo 12 included some playboy spread out on the crew’s checklists, which were attached to Pete Conrad and Alan L. Bean’s wrists as they explored the lunar landscape. The astronaut Richard Gordon, who remained in orbit around the moon during the mission, also found a topless DeDe Lind calendar that was hidden in a locker and was labeled “Map of a Celestial Body”.