Need a bit of space?

Need a bit of space?

Ever get fed up with this old planet? Do you sometimes feel that you’d like to go somewhere else for a while?

 

If it's some space you're looking for…well, how about outer space? Nice and quiet and loads of 'space'!

The first thing you'd need is a space suit: the cheapest one costs about six million pounds.

A few people have taken their own atmosphere with them to space and even managed to 'walk' in space. The first person to do this was Alexei Leonov in 1965.

Leonov_Alexei

One of the many problems Leonov faced was that his spacesuit had no cooling system which would cause him to over heat and lose a lot of body water.

Also, as soon as he left the space craft, the suit would become as stiff as a rugby ball and Leonov couldn't even bend his arms. This was caused by pressure levels inside the suit, but reducing the pressure could lead to suffocation.

Luckily, these problems have been solved and modern space suits have their own cooling, humidity and pressure-control systems. They don't blow up like balloons, and you'd be able to move about freely. A modern space suit is a self contained world which would allow you to live in space, but you'd soon get tired of living in it.

space_suits

You could of course take it off, but without oxygen you'd suffocate in a matter of minutes. The reason why we don't suffocate is because the Earth has a protective atmosphere which is about 100Km thick. Without it, the seas would boil and evaporate into space, and there's a fair chance your blood would boil before you suffocated. This is because the Earth's temperature would swing between a very chilly -180oC and a very warm 100oC. It also protects us from radiation from the sun, cosmic rays from exploding stars, meteors, bits of old comet and all sorts of other potentially catastrophic space junk.

death_valley

So maybe this old planet isn't so bad after all eh? Even living in the remotest of places on our planet like Death Valley or the Antarctica is a piece of cake compared to living in space!

Sign up for the newsletter
Sign Up For The Newsletter
Want to get the latest science news from Planet Science straight to your inbox? Sign up now!