So, let's say you're one month into a year-long mission on the International Space Station, and you're feeling a little bored. You decide to pop in a movie. What film do you choose?
If you're Scott Kelly, it's Gravity. The astronaut tweeted a photo of "movie night" aboard ISS, and, sure enough, you can make out Sandra Bullock floating around the space station. Pretty meta, eh? It also seems like a pretty unusual choice, since, you know, it's a space station disaster movie. And he's stuck on the space station.
It's a bit like watching airplane disaster documentaries on a trans-Atlantic flight. Or Titanic on your next cruise. Or, perhaps, The Thing while you're posted at an Antarctic research station for the winter. It definitely doesn't calm the nerves.
#Movie night in micro #Gravity aboard #ISS on our new HD projector which we use for conferences, tech software, etc.. pic.twitter.com/Mhb03U3alz— Scott Kelly (@StationCDRKelly) April 25, 2015
Scott Kelly blasted off with Cosmonaut Mikhail Kornienko last month to embark on the One Year mission. As the name suggests, the two will spend a year at ISS, setting a new record for the space station and coming just short of the longest single stays in space, which were set by cosmonauts in the 1980s and 1990s.
NASA is analyzing the effects of microgravity on the human body — and the psychological tolls of such a mission — in preparation for any future Mars missions. Whenever that day comes, maybe NASA will be wise enough not to pack Red Planet for the trip.