(ORDO NEWS) — Astronauts often face serious dangers or even death. But what happens if an astronaut dies in space?
There are several different approaches that the crew can take in the event of the death of a member.
One of the most obvious solutions is to send the astronaut’s body back to Earth. However, this is only possible on the ISS, which is securely connected to the planet.
On a spacecraft during an expedition, crew members must ensure proper preservation of the body and prevent contamination.
According to Aerospace Engineering , the crew must place the body in an airtight bag and leave it in a space suit, while keeping it in the coldest part of the spacecraft.
According to Business Insider, NASA and eco-burial company Promessa are collaborating to develop a “body back” technique in which a body is placed in an airtight bag outside a spacecraft. The corpse is then exposed to the low temperatures of outer space (-270°C) until it is completely frozen.
About an hour later, a robotic arm brings the bag back on board and then vibrates it to break the frozen body into pieces and reduce it to “dust”.
In this state, the dehydrated frozen “ashes” of a person weigh about 20 kilograms and can be stored on board for many years before being returned to Earth.
But you can just throw the body into space?
According to the UN agreement , the release of any debris (including human remains) into outer space is prohibited. The fact is that the ejected body can potentially collide with satellites or other spacecraft.
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