Life in space is not easy going. I mean life of astronauts in space is not easy going. Every day astronauts have to face many challenges in routine. Space is zero gravity zone. Due to negligible gravity in space, every substance fly even astronauts. You all know that we are stable on earth due to gravity but space is zero gravity zone.
How does one feel about it when in space?
How is life in space?
I am not an astronaut but I am an aeronautical engineer, so I can share my learning and studies with you.
I followed some renowned astronauts of NASA like Chris Hadfield , Scott Kelly and Sunita Williams on Twitter and YouTube. They have some recorded videos and interviews of their space mission on You Tube. After long hours research I am going to share the untold truth of life in space.
Astronauts are trained for several months before going to any space missions. NASA selects very few astronauts for space missions. Space missions are of limited time periods. Sometime it goes longer.
Now starting from the beginning of space mission, Astronauts wear space suits which are a bright orange color suit. They wear white color space suit during the space walk which reflects the sun rays.
Astronauts Wear Space Suits Due to Following Reasons:-
- To make astronauts sustain in extreme space temperatures. (i.e. colder minus 250 degree Fahrenheit to hotter 250 degree Fahrenheit ).
- It provides continuous oxygen supply to astronaut in space.
- It protects astronaut body from space dust injuries.
- It keeps astronaut body cool during space walk.
- It provides special designed visors which protect astronaut’s eyes from bright sunlight.
The Components of Astronaut Space Suit which Provides all Comforts during Space Walk are:-
- It contains hard upper torso which covers the astronaut’s chest.
- Arm assembly covers the arms and connects to the gloves.
- The helmet and extravehicular visor assembly are designed to protect the astronaut’s legs and feet’s.
- Underneath the spacesuit, astronauts wear a liquid cooling and ventilation garment.
- Water flows through these tubes to keep the astronaut cool during the space walk.
- On the back of the space suit is a back pack called the primary life support subsystem.
- This back pack contains the oxygen that astronauts breathe during a spacewalk. It also removes carbon dioxide and astronauts exhale. The primary life support subsystem also provides the electricity for the suit. A fan circulates oxygen through the spacesuit and life support systems.
SAFER is attached to back pack contain several small thruster jets. If an astronaut became separated from the space station, he or she could use SAFER to fly back.
Astronauts wear 2 (two) watches on their hands. One watch show the Mission Elapsed Time while another one shows the Greenwich Mean Time. Mission elapsed time watch show the timing from when they left from earth. Greenwich Mean Time is the world time which is used by astronauts to compare their sleep cycle in space and to know their timing of their house town.
Related: Space Vehicles and its types
Astronaut Regular Routine in Space
Astronaut use one meter by one meter large toilet. Both male and female use the same toilet. Toilet consists of western style seat which has vacuum cleaner type machine which sucks the waste and make it dried packets. They have to fasten themselves to toilet seats so that they won’t float away. This western style toilet setup creates lots of noise during running. This noise cope up under the other noises of air conditioners, motors and fans.
Astronauts use wet towel to clean their body and waterless shampoo to wash their hairs. In space where gravity is zero so they don’t have sink to do wash body parts. They use foam less shampoos to wash their hairs because foamy shampoos can create spatters inside the space shuttle.
They use wet towel to clean their body parts which has formulation of liquid soap. They can also use alcohol to wash their body with wet towel.
Astronaut eats in the same way they do on earth. Earlier they have to use toothpaste type tubes to eat food. These tubes contain the food ingredients in colloidal form. Now astronaut use to eat vitamin capsules, fruits, nuts and bread. They also drink liquids in the specialized packets with straw.
Astronauts wear the same cloths inside the space shuttle. Internal pressure of space shuttle set to 1 atmospheric pressure which is same as earth atmosphere. Humidity and temperature also under controlled to make internal atmosphere comfortable for the astronauts. Astronauts wear cotton clothes. They cannot use laundry in space shuttle, so they keep number of under wears for changing regularly. They also bring extra pants and shirts. When they have to go outside the space shuttle then the astronauts have to wear white color space suits which protect them from harmful radiations and pressure changes.
Exercise is most important for the astronauts to make their bones and muscles strong. On earth due to gravity we have loads on our muscles and bones which make them stronger. In space or zero gravity zone body floats that’s why there is no loads on muscles and bones which makes them weaker. Astronauts have treadmills and ergo meters equipments for exercising inside the space shuttle. They exercise regularly 2 to 3 times to make their body strong.
Astronauts use disposable gloves, liquid detergents, vacuum cleaner and multi-purpose towels to clean their space shuttle. They do lots of jobs inside the space shuttle to pass their time and one of it is cleaning. They clean the space shuttle with spraying liquid detergents, picking the waste packets or garbage’s with disposable gloves and cleaning the floor with vacuum cleaner. They collect the disposable gloves and bring it back to earth.
Astronaut’s entertainments elements include reading favorite books, listening to music and watching the earth from their space shuttles. Astronauts spend their leisure time as same they would on earth. Earth , other planets and stars look amazing from space shuttle, so they keep watching them and even they click selfies.
Astronauts have sleeping cycle of 6 to 8 hours and rest of the day they spend in researches and watching earth. They sleep inside the sleeping bags with straps. They loosely strap themselves inside the sleeping bags and compartment. They have eye masks and ear plugs to eradicate the noise and disturbance.
During the mission of space, the astronaut team has one medical officer, who takes care of astronauts. Every astronaut is trained for emergency rescues. They have given special medicines, injections and surgery items to deal with emergencies.
Life in space is not breezy but astronauts are so well trained that they able to complete their space missions. They do their all works under the supervision of NASA. Space shuttle and space suits play pivotal role in space missions. NASA spend billions of dollars on space missions.
This is the untold truth of life of astronauts in space. Majority of people are unaware about the life of astronauts during space missions. That’s why I shared my research here.