Trying to blog even semi-regularly turns out to be difficult! I didn’t even notice that its been 9 months since my last post! But last month I have been busy setting up my new youtube channel ‘space mog’ as well as other accompanying social media sites (instagram, facebook). Hopefully this will help steer my career back onto the public communication route which has been very lacking since my move to Spain. It turns out that if you don’t speak the language, it’s pretty difficult to teach – who knew?.
Anyway my latest video can be found at the end of this post. The idea is to bring educational science material in short segments to the world wide web. If there’s any topic you’re burning for me to talk about please let me know! Bye for now xoxo
Earlier this week I visited ESA’s European Astronaut Centre (EAC) in Cologne, Germany. I’ve been very fortunate for this to be the 3rd time I have been to facility. The last time was pretty cool – I mean, it’s not every day you get a personal tour by ESA astronaut Andreas Mogensen, especially whilst he’s preparing to go to space!
Well last week, Andreas Mogensen finally made his debut space flight to the international space station. For those of you who don’t know much about Andreas, here’s 5 facts that you really ought to know:
1. He was joined the European Astronaut Corps in 2009 and has been training for 6 years for his 10 day journey aboard the ISS
2. He is the 1st astronaut from Denmark and to celebrate the Danish company LEGO made 20 custom LEGO figurines to keep him company whilst in space. The LEGO toys will be prizes to kids that can come up with the best video of Andreas’ story
3. Originally his trip to the ISS was supposed to take 6 hours but instead it took 2 days to avoid space junk, that’s a long time to be stuck in the Soyuz – It’s a 5th the size of the shuttle orbiter!
4. When Andreas and fellow crew members boarded the ISS, they brought the total number of inhabitants up to 9. The ISS was only built for 6 astronauts!
5. His main task is of course science. These include testing a new water-cleaning system, hands-free goggles similar to google-glass, a tight-fitting suit that mimics the effects of gravity and controlling rovers on Earth to prepare for future missions on Mars.
At EAC, I was given the opportunity to sit in on a conference call with the ISS and space agencies from around the world. It was unbelievable that I was on a LIVE chat to all 9 astronauts in space! Space has never seemed more close than in that moment and it is a memory that I will cherish always. Follow Andreas’ journey on twitter @Astro_Andreas.