A team of astronauts is specially trained to solve an unprecedented disaster in space. It sounds like the plot of Armageddon or any number of other generic Hollywood blockbusters but, in the Russian space adventure Salyut-7, it actually happened. Unfortunately, somehow that doesn't make the movie any more exciting.
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So you may have heard the Federal Government's announcement that Australia will finally be getting a space agency. It's a move that could see the space industry be worth $8 billion per year to the Australian economy.
But more than that: it means we can dream of being astronauts once again.
Video: Some time between your marine biologist and professional ninja phases, you probably dreamed of being an astronaut as a kid. But have you seen all the work that goes into actually becoming one? Save yourself years of G-force training and wearing onesies and just shortcut your way onto the International Space Station, which became available for tour through Google Maps' Street View today.
Astronauts are golden retrievers of human beings. The rest of us have to live vicariously through their resplendent existences while we sit back and watch hours of cats reacting to fidget spinners. Now, Reebok has decided to make our astronaut envy even worse -- it's finally revealed the space boots for Boeing Starliner astronauts and goddamn are they fly.
NASA's astronauts are American heroes and proxies for our hopes and dreams. The best part of each new astronaut class is that we get an entirely fresh crop of people we can live vicariously through, and this year is no exception. Today, NASA announced its 22nd space squad. Although over 18,000 applied, the space agency decided that just 12 had the right stuff.
In 59 years, NASA has flown more than 50 women into space. That might seem like a reasonable number, but when you consider the space agency has flown hundreds of men over the same time period, it's a tad unsettling. If we ever want to actually colonise a planet like Mars, we're going to have bring hundreds of women, or thousands.
As journalists, it's our obligation -- nay, our duty -- to ask the hard questions. So when presented with the opportunity to ask a living former astronaut and American hero Mike Massimino about his two trips to the final frontier to fix the Hubble Space Telescope, without any real impetus or news peg, we knew what to do. We bombarded him with the dumbest questions we could think of.
Although it sounds like The Hunger Games in space, Germany's "Die Astronautin" competition - which means "the astronaut" - seeks to put the first German woman into space. In March 2016, 400 women entered the competition, and yesterday, aerospace recruitment agency HE Space announced it had selected its final six candidates. If the private mission succeeds in securing funding, one of these badass ladies will head up to the International Space Station (ISS) for 10 days in 2020.
Shane Kimbrough is an American hero. Not only is he risking his life breathing recycled air and eating tasteless, shrink-wrapped meals in a radiation-blasted tin can 400km above Earth, the man just took time out of his busy schedule to participate in the grotesque bloodsport that is the 2016 US presidential election.