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What happens to your body when you die in space?

NASA isn’t sure what to do with corpses in space, but they may need to figure it out soon. Of the more than 550 people we’ve sent into the cosmos, just 21 have died—and only 3 actually above the boundary between Earth and space—since humankind first took to strapping ourselves to rockets. When there have…

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NASA isn’t sure what to do with corpses in space, but they may need to figure it out soon.

Of the more than 550 people we’ve sent into the cosmos, just 21 have died—and only 3 actually above the boundary between Earth and space—since humankind first took to strapping ourselves to rockets. When there have been fatalities, the entire crew has been lost, leaving no one to rescue. But as we move closer to a human mission to Mars, there’s a higher likelihood that individuals could be stranded or even perish—whether that’s on the way, while living in harsh environments, or at some other point of the mission.

**Correction: April 15, 2021
The video misstates the distance from Earth to the Moon. It is 250,000 miles, not 250 miles.**

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Popular Science answers your most outlandish, mind-burning questions—from what the universe is made of to why not everyone can touch their toes.

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Assignment: Outer Space (1960), Canadian Space Agency, Destination Earth (1956), European Space Agency, Galaxy Science Fiction, NASA/JPL, Prelinger Archives, Richard Nixon Presidential Library and Museum, U.S. National Archives

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18 Comments

18 Comments

  1. Brendan Hall

    April 13, 2021 at 12:20 pm

    Not quite what happens when you loose air pressure in space. 🤦🏼

    • Bridget Connors

      April 14, 2021 at 10:21 pm

      As opposed to tight air pressure?

  2. Brendan Hall

    April 13, 2021 at 12:20 pm

    Not quite what happens when you l̶o̶o̶s̶e̶ lose air pressure in space. 🤦🏼

    • Brendan Hall

      April 15, 2021 at 2:56 am

      @Bridget Connors Haha thanks. We all make mistakes. Best to acknowledge them, learn and grow from them and keep going. Seeker has some wonderful material but it’s sad to see old myths and misconceptions permeate sci-com

    • Lurklen

      April 17, 2021 at 9:33 am

      Yeah, I thought it sounded a bit off. I remember reading a bunch of articles on how the whole “Filling up like a balloon” thing was an exaggeration (because your skin isn’t that elastic) and that it takes longer for the whole blood boiling thing to occur, though the things outside or exposed would start to do so more quickly (one astronaut reported feeling the saliva on his tongue begin to boil before passing out).

  3. Popular Science

    April 13, 2021 at 1:53 pm

    The article version of this video also includes a part about space cannibalism (obviously)

  4. Oldscool Gaming.

    April 14, 2021 at 11:18 am

    WHAT DO YOU MEAN WHEN! is there something your not telling me…. : o

  5. Sweet Tea

    April 14, 2021 at 11:48 am

    Thanks for sharing

  6. Tracy Webb

    April 14, 2021 at 11:48 am

    Thanks for sharing

  7. Sweet Tea

    April 14, 2021 at 11:48 am

    🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

  8. Tracy Webb

    April 14, 2021 at 11:48 am

    🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

  9. Popular Science

    April 15, 2021 at 4:51 pm

    Correction: April 15, 2021
    The video misstates the distance from Earth to the Moon. It is 250,000 miles, not 250 miles. 🌎 🚀 🌔

    • Emory Draven

      April 27, 2021 at 8:32 am

      a trick : you can watch movies at Flixzone. I’ve been using them for watching lots of of movies these days.

    • Lucian Devin

      April 27, 2021 at 8:43 am

      @Emory Draven Yea, I’ve been using flixzone for since november myself 😀

  10. Alex Aslan

    April 30, 2021 at 6:59 pm

    The Everest analogy was was very appropriate. But organic contamination would appear to be a non-issue: exactly what microorganisms can survive in the environment presented by space or atmosphere-free planet?

  11. Haldos Prime

    May 19, 2021 at 5:15 am

    0:45 Michael Collins too. He gets so little acknowledgment.

    • senororlando2

      May 31, 2021 at 12:07 am

      Collins was in the ship, the other two were on the surface

  12. ERMAN KAZAR

    September 8, 2021 at 6:23 pm

    👍

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