John Herrington the astronaut talks to us about space!

Sign in to queue

Description

To me being a pilot is one of those really impressive jobs. But being an astronaut is well, the coolest thing ever. I had a chance to speak to astronaut John Herrington who has traveled to space and spent time in the international space station. He will be flying the winner of the vanishing point game to space. We talked about life in space and a little anti-gravity.  Here's what he has to say.

Embed

Download

Download this episode

The Discussion

  • User profile image
    Matthew Mushall

    Great segment, Tina.  Your interviews are second to none.

    Aerospace is huge passion of mine.  It's always a treat to hear what astronauts have to say about space flight or "controlled orbit and decent" based our perspective of it.

    John had a lot of interesting things to say, but I'm surprised he didn't elaborate on 2 things to help viewers understand better.  The first was the rocket plane and going from positive 2 - 4 gravity to weightlessness.  It's very similar to riding a rollercoaster.  Gravity and minor acceleration on the incline holds you back against your seat until you reach the top, then you descend at near (the same on the X-Plane) force of gravity on the way down.  Gravity cancels out and for a few minutes (about 2 minutes I think) you're weightless and free to float about the cabin.  Very cool...but it can feel weird and make you sick because human balance centers (in the inner ear) are dependant on gravity.  No gravity - no balance.

    The second issue he kind of skipped over was technology.  He was very close in saying that the technology we have works very well...but there isn't much research in improving it quickly.  There simply isn't much consumer money to be made in space at present...so there isn't enough R&D.  People love to throw around the term "space age technology."  Space age technology is at least 30 years old!  It's the independent companies that are really developing cutting-edge aerospace technology...and only a fraction of it ever becomes commercially available.

    The Apollo missions simply baffle me!  To think of what those scientists did with slide rulers and chalk board mathematics is absolutely incredulous.  All of that was government funded too.  It's a shame the current administration and public sentiment is not focused more on scientific discovery and less on protecting vested interests in foreign oil.

  • User profile image
    Matthew Mushall

    Great segment, Tina.  Your interviews are second to none.

    Aerospace is huge passion of mine.  It's always a treat to hear what astronauts have to say about space flight or "controlled orbit and decent" based our perspective of it.

    John had a lot of interesting things to say, but I'm surprised he didn't elaborate on 2 things to help viewers understand better.  The first was the rocket plane and going from positive 2 - 4 gravity to weightlessness.  It's very similar to riding a rollercoaster.  Gravity and minor acceleration on the incline holds you back against your seat until you reach the top, then you descend at near (the same on the X-Plane) force of gravity on the way down.  Gravity cancels out and for a few minutes (about 2 minutes I think) you're weightless and free to float about the cabin.  Very cool...but it can feel weird and make you sick because human balance centers (in the inner ear) are dependant on gravity.  No gravity - no balance.

    The second issue he kind of skipped over was technology.  He was very close in saying that the technology we have works very well...but there isn't much research in improving it quickly.  There simply isn't much consumer money to be made in space at present...so there isn't enough R&D.  People love to throw around the term "space age technology."  Space age technology is at least 30 years old!  It's the independent companies that are really developing cutting-edge aerospace technology...and only a fraction of it ever becomes commercially available.

    The Apollo missions simply baffle me!  To think of what those scientists did with slide rulers and chalk board mathematics is absolutely incredulous.  All of that was government funded too.  It's a shame the current administration and public sentiment is not focused more on scientific discovery and less on protecting vested interests in foreign oil.

Add Your 2 Cents