Astronauts Are Now Practicing Drilling an Asteroid Underwater [VIDEO]
May 10, 2014 11:35
Astronauts are training for Armageddon already! On Friday, astronauts Stan Love and Steve Bowen jumped in NASA's 40-foot-deep pool to try out a new suit design and several tools that will be used on the asteroid mission that will start in the 2020s.
NASA uploaded some videos of the training and you can see the astronauts climb in and out of the Orion spacecraft to their thing on the asteroid. NASA explains on its blog:
For instance, one of the primary goals of visiting an asteroid will be to obtain a core sample that shows its layers, intact – such a sample could provide information on the age of the solar system and how it was formed. But the tools geologist use to collect core samples or even chips of rocks aren't a good idea in space – swinging a hammer in front of your face isn't safe when the sheet of glass between you and it is necessary to keep you alive. Instead Love and Bowen tried out a pneumatic hammer to give them a feel for whether a battery-powered version might be useful.
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