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Sochi Olympic Torch Taken On Historic Spacewalk

samzenpus posted about 8 months ago | from the space-relay dept.

Space 80

rtoz writes "Two Russian cosmonauts have taken the torch for the Sochi Winter Olympics on its first historic spacewalk. Oleg Kotov and Sergei Ryazansky took the unlit version of the torch through the hatch of the International Space Station. The Olympic torch has been carried into space twice before – in 1996 and 2000 – but it has never left a spaceship. It was not lit aboard the space station as this would consume oxygen and pose a risk to the crew."

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80 comments

How is this news for nerds? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45384379)

Keep that Olympic crap for...

Wait, did you say a spacewalk?

Re:How is this news for nerds? (2)

jellomizer (103300) | about 8 months ago | (#45384587)

Now the funny thing would be if he accidently dropped it floating in free space. I could see web sites, such as when will the Olympic Torch will be overhead. Or bets that it will loose orbit and crash land in the Olympic fire pits just as the Olympics start. Now that would be worth a gold metal in mathematics.

Re:How is this news for nerds? (1)

Mitchell314 (1576581) | about 8 months ago | (#45384905)

Would it even make it to the ground?

Re:How is this news for nerds? (3, Informative)

Luckyo (1726890) | about 8 months ago | (#45385007)

No, unless you significantly alter its speed. ISS orbit slowly decays, but if it were to ever really hit the atmosphere at the speed it's traveling, it would burn out fast. This is intentional to ensure that most stuff we launch into orbit never makes it back as a kinetic projectile.

Re:How is this news for nerds? (2)

Deadstick (535032) | about 8 months ago | (#45385041)

Ummm, no. You don't get to select both the altitude and speed of a circular orbit: one determines the other. Kepler and all that.

Re:How is this news for nerds? (1)

Luckyo (1726890) | about 8 months ago | (#45385615)

Geosynchronous, and especially geostationary orbit exists. So while you're correct, there's nothing to stop us from putting an object into decaying orbit where atmospheric impact will not cause significant enough friction to burn it out.

We just choose not to.

Re:How is this news for nerds? (1)

ByteSlicer (735276) | about 8 months ago | (#45385897)

Geosynchronous, and especially geostationary orbit exists. So while you're correct, there's nothing to stop us from putting an object into decaying orbit where atmospheric impact will not cause significant enough friction to burn it out.

We just choose not to.

The ISS orbits between 330 km (205 mi) and 435 km (270 mi).
Geostationary orbits are at 35,786 km above sea level. That's about 35,000 km higher, and about 1/11th of the distance to the moon.
We choose not to put stuff there because:
a. Its expensive to put stuff in such a high orbit (more powerful rockets, more fuel)
b. It's pretty far from earth, so not very convenient to get to/from, especially in emergencies.

Furthermore, an object in a decaying geostationary orbit (going at about 3 km/s) would speed up along the orbit the closer it gets to earth (basic orbital mechanics), so eventually it would still have enough speed to incinerate largely in the atmosphere.

Any stable orbit has an associated speed, which is what Deadstick was saying. You seem to imply that we choose that speed so stuff will burn up on reentry, which is nonsense. It is estimated that 25% of a large satellite will reach the ground. At best they control (speed up) the orbital decay, so that debris will splash down in an ocean.

Re:How is this news for nerds? (1)

Luckyo (1726890) | about 8 months ago | (#45386489)

I was talking about orbits in general, not ISS in particular. Hence "most stuff we launch into orbit".

Re:How is this news for nerds? (1)

Deadstick (535032) | about 8 months ago | (#45386881)

No! When a high (like geosynchronous) orbiter decays, the speed goes up. When it gets down to the altitude of a low orbiter, it's going just as fast as that low orbiter. It will still burn in -- it just takes several times as long from launch to burn-in as a low orbiter does.

Re:How is this news for nerds? (1)

Luckyo (1726890) | about 8 months ago | (#45387189)

This is not my day in expressing what I mean.

I was trying to say that it is in fact possible to match a decaying orbit to rotation speed of upper levels of atmosphere so that upon contact the object will not have a significant speed differential and will survive re-entry intact. Such an orbit is quite possible. Such an orbit would have to be near-geostationary at the point of entry, meaning it would have to be slower at higher height.

Re:How is this news for nerds? (1)

FatLittleMonkey (1341387) | about 8 months ago | (#45387553)

No. For an object to be going at 800m/s at reentry (ground/atmosphere rotation speed), then it must be at the top (apogee) of an eccentric orbit with a perigee much lower. And lower is inside the atmosphere, which means it already burnt up. The only other way is if the object is in a suborbital, ballistic path. Think SpaceShipOne or Virgin Galactic. (Or any sounding rocket.) Straight up, straight down. One time only. No orbit.

If you are picturing a satellite in an eccentric orbit that has its apogee at geosync altitudes (34 thousand km) and a perigee at the top of the atmosphere (say, 100km above the surface), then at perigee the satellite will be moving faster than a satellite in a circular low orbit. So it's reentry speed will be higher. (About 2km/s higher, so 30% faster.)

Re:How is this news for nerds? (2)

Zouden (232738) | about 8 months ago | (#45391871)

That's not an orbit, that's hovering on retrorockets.

Re:How is this news for nerds? (1)

FatLittleMonkey (1341387) | about 8 months ago | (#45387411)

Is there enough atmosphere in GEO to cause satellites to slow down (and hence speed up, I love orbital mechanics) enough to significantly reduce altitude?

Tidal effects will cause them to drift, so they won't remain geostationary/geosynchronous, but are they any more likely to degrade than move higher?

Re:How is this news for nerds? (1)

Deadstick (535032) | about 8 months ago | (#45387473)

There's enough to cause decay eventually, but it can be a long time...on the order of decades or more. Tidal forces could be a factor, but I'd expect them to be a decay factor -- as seen from the spacecraft, the tidal bulges would appear to be rotating retrograde.

Re:How is this news for nerds? (1)

FatLittleMonkey (1341387) | about 8 months ago | (#45387567)

the tidal bulges would appear to be rotating retrograde.

Ah, yes, of course. I should have seen that. Thanks.

Re:How is this news for nerds? (1)

Megane (129182) | about 8 months ago | (#45387495)

On the positive side, at least the torch would be lit on the way down!

Re:How is this news for nerds? (2)

Luckyo (1726890) | about 8 months ago | (#45384971)

Consider the symbolism. From Ancient Greece to the orbit, we've come a long way as species.

Re:How is this news for nerds? (1)

Kaenneth (82978) | about 8 months ago | (#45385031)

Next stop, Mars.

Who fucking cares? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45384405)

The Olympics have been hopelessly corrupt for decades now. There'd be more history in taking my fucking toilet plunger into space.

Re:Who fucking cares? (1)

CohibaVancouver (864662) | about 8 months ago | (#45384879)

The Olympics have been hopelessly corrupt for decades now.

We hosted the Olympics Jr. in my city (Vancouver) in 2010. It was a fabulous event.

Please provide several cites explaining how our Olympics were 'hopelessly corrupt."

Thanks.

(And please don't cite the Olympic village. That wasn't 'hopeless corruption' - It was just poor business decisions.)

Re:Who fucking cares? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45385061)

I wouldn't say "corrupt" but hosting the Olympics is like an average couple throwing a huge wedding. The wedding itself will be fun and talked about for years, but the couple has to sacrifice their lifestyle in the year before, saving every penny for the one party, and they end up with a wedding dress, 2 sets of silverware, and 3 bread makers that they'll never use.

The Vancouver Olympics was a lot of fun too, but in the 4 years prior a lot of the smaller cultural events and festivals took a big hit as their regular sponsors focused their attention on the Olympics. And afterwards we ended up with unnecessary infrastructure that still has to be maintained. The winter Olympics isn't that bad, but the city hosting the summer one has to build all kinds of crazy venues that will be underused afterwards and eventually abandoned.

Most cities are much better off hosting annual events on the world championship circuit, track and field, golf, tennis, F1, etc. There's much less infrastructure needed, it gets used and brings income annually, and it puts the city on the map every year instead of once in a lifetime.

Re:Who fucking cares? (1)

femtobyte (710429) | about 8 months ago | (#45387159)

The problem being that instead of the "couple" (the wealthy politicians/businessmen making the decisions) sacrificing their lifestyle, they live lavishly on the preparations while slashing the quality of everyone else's lifestyle. The poor and middle class see their schools and public infrastructure getting cut to fund the lavish party (that they'd never be able to afford tickets for) for the global oligarchy at taxpayer expense. The Olympics are yet another excuse for the upward redistribution of wealth, away from the general citizenry of a city and into the pockets of a wealthy elite.

Re:Who fucking cares? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45385079)

Everything is poor business decision in Russia.

Re:Who fucking cares? (2)

FatLittleMonkey (1341387) | about 8 months ago | (#45387659)

The original poster said "The Olympics".

Cites for Sochi:

Billions stolen in Sochi Olympics preparations [reuters.com] . The opposition alleges that Putin's buddies have stolen US$30b from the Sochi preparations (over half the $54b budget.)

"Corruption and censorship cast shadow over Russia's Games" [independent.co.uk] . Corruption, censorship and human rights violations.

Russia Cracks Down On Journalists, Activists Exposing Corruption Ahead Of Sochi Olympics [thinkprogress.org] . Putin's response to corruption claims, shoot the messengers.

And more generally:

Wrestling with corruption at the Olympics [bloomberg.com] . Gives a more general overview of the long history of Olympic corruption. Put simply, it's baked into the DNA of the entire organisation.

Re:Who fucking cares? (0)

CohibaVancouver (864662) | about 8 months ago | (#45387749)

The original poster said "The Olympics". The OP said -

The Olympics have been hopelessly corrupt for decades now. There'd be more history in taking my fucking toilet plunger into space

I asked for specific examples of corruption with the 2010 Olympics held in my city.

Meaningless (5, Insightful)

paiute (550198) | about 8 months ago | (#45384419)

It is the flame which represents the continuity with the ancient games. An unlit torch doesn't qualify as anything but a gold plated unlit torch.

Re:Meaningless (1)

rikkards (98006) | about 8 months ago | (#45384431)

And an ugly one at that.

"Our goal here is to make it look spectacular," Mr Kotov said earlier this week.

But obviously not fabulous.

Re:Meaningless (2)

dunkelfalke (91624) | about 8 months ago | (#45384785)

Re:Meaningless (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45387417)

The torch resembles an 'P' for Russia. The vodka is Russian, with an 'P' also. That's all the picture says.

Re:Meaningless (1)

davester666 (731373) | about 8 months ago | (#45384975)

If they wanted it to be spectacular, they would have blown up on the launchpad, or shortly thereafter [without any cosmonauts aboard]...

Re:Meaningless (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45384553)

Re:Meaningless (3, Insightful)

MightyYar (622222) | about 8 months ago | (#45384563)

The thing flames out all the time and they relight it with a cigarette lighter. It's just symbolism either way. Personally, I think it is cooler that it was in space than that some well-connected individuals touched it in several cities.

Re:Meaningless (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45384865)

The original Olympic flame get's first lighten in the original Olympic's original place, Olympia Greece, and then that original flame travels by plane where the Olympics would take place, and kept there to be used for lighten the big torch at the start ceremony - from Olympia Greece a second original flame starts to travel with the individual torches (and with some backups of that flame that used for the cases where a torch is off - it is supposed to be re-lighten from the backups, not as we see many times -in the past also- from "zippo" and "big" lighters!).
Anyway, the big torch at the start ceremony will be lighten with the original torch, but, as you write, it's the symbolism that matters.
Greetings from Greece...

Re:Meaningless (1)

tlhIngan (30335) | about 8 months ago | (#45401809)

For the 2010 Winter Olympics, the "original flame" was carried by literally two Coleman-style lamps - the same kind you'd use camping.

One was used to light the torches used in the relays (and each relayer passed the flame to the next, and the old flame was promptly extinguished and the burner removed so it could not be re-lit. The shell was then given to the relay participant).

But said lamps were the backups of each other as well. Likely there were backups of them as well as the two were travelling.

Re:Meaningless (2)

Deadstick (535032) | about 8 months ago | (#45385083)

In theory, the flame's history is supposed to be unbroken back to its lighting with a magnifying glass on Mt. Olympus, though they can deploy extra flames from there to accomplish relights without traveling back to Greece. There have been some incidents where that rule was broken, especially where nobody was looking.

The relay by athletes, BTW, is a Nazi invention dating to 1936.

Re:Meaningless (1)

AlphaWolf_HK (692722) | about 8 months ago | (#45384795)

I don't think you can actually light the thing in space anyways - without a constant active supply of fresh oxygen, fire cannot last long at all in space. On earth, gravity enables the hot carbonized air to rise while fresh oxygen comes from the sides. In space this doesn't happen, so the flame suffocates itself quickly.

http://www.space.com/13766-international-space-station-flex-fire-research.html [space.com]

Re:Meaningless (0)

Kaenneth (82978) | about 8 months ago | (#45385047)

If warm air rises, why is it colder at higher altitudes?

Christians 1, Atheists 0.

Re:Meaningless (1)

turgid (580780) | about 8 months ago | (#45385827)

While we're doing comedy, here's one...

Q: What do you call a cockerel who's lost his voice?

A: A cock-a-doodle-don't.

Re:Meaningless (1)

turgid (580780) | about 8 months ago | (#45386819)

And here's one for the Christians:

Q: Why did the dinosaur cross the road?

A: Because the chicken hadn't been invented yet.

Re:Meaningless (1)

Neil Boekend (1854906) | about 8 months ago | (#45389299)

I assume that if the flame is contained in a heat proof glass container and oxygen and fuel is pushed into it from one side while a small hole lets exhaust gasses come out the other side you could simulate the flow heat+gravity causes on earth. Then the flame could continue in a hard vacuum without gravity. That would have been awesome.

Re:Meaningless (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45384881)

The games themselves were supposed to be symbolic of a unifying spirit. The torch was just a metaphor. You carried it to light the way along a unifying path, passing through all the participating lands where hostility was set aside, even in time of war, to allow people to connect in the spirit of a higher existence named after the place of the Gods. The modern world, with the exception of the new Hellenist Polytheistic Reconstructionists [wikipedia.org] has no connection to the ancients any longer, so why quibble?

The wold no longer breaks from its hostilities any more than Jubilee is used to reset the failed multigenerational debts that bind small nations to the bad decisions of corrupt and manipulated despots of Banana Republics with their financial manipulators.

Space is the final frontier. When man holds amateur international sporting contests off-world, we will have arrived at the next epoch of human stupidity. Carrying the unlit torch to into space is nothing but the first stage. At least they didn't attempt to light it up there...

Re:Meaningless (1)

Megane (129182) | about 8 months ago | (#45387517)

This is not the flame, This is the torch that will carry the flame in a few weeks. And maybe already has carried it for a while. Yes, I've heard those stories about re-lighting it with a lighter, but there's no reason you can't "park" an eternal flame for a couple of days while you put the torch in a hard vacuum.

Re:Meaningless (1)

isorox (205688) | about 8 months ago | (#45390193)

It is the flame which represents the continuity with the ancient games. An unlit torch doesn't qualify as anything but a gold plated unlit torch.

For 2012, the UK did a lot of PR about keeping the flame alight (the CAA approval for keeping it alight on the flights, the backup flame in the convoy, etc)

Russia didn't bother with that

Olympic torch relit for Sochi Winter Games 2014 [bbc.co.uk]
The Olympic torch relay got off to a rocky start in Moscow when the flame briefly went out during a loop through the Kremlin.

Torch bearer and former world swimming champion Shavarsh Karapetyan enlisted the help of a Kremlin security guard who re-ignited the flame with his cigarette lighter.

Seriously? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45384445)

There should be some kind of Bozo award given here for the silliest public relations stupidity ever created.
Seconded.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bozo_the_Clown

one a side note (1)

Mishotaki (957104) | about 8 months ago | (#45384455)

how does fire burn when there is no gravity? where do the flames go? does it become a big fireball?

Re:one a side note (0)

CastrTroy (595695) | about 8 months ago | (#45384477)

Isn't fire just photons? Is it even effected by gravity?

Re:one a side note (3, Informative)

ShanghaiBill (739463) | about 8 months ago | (#45384515)

Isn't fire just photons? Is it even effected by gravity?

Fire is generally caused by the exothermic oxidation of fuel. If the oxidizer is air, then convection is required to ensure a continuous replenishment of the oxygen. For most fires this convection is induced by gravity pulling in fresh air as the hot air rises. A candle, match, or lighter will not work in zero gravity without artificial convection (such as a fan).

Re:one a side note (4, Informative)

adolf (21054) | about 8 months ago | (#45385393)

A candle, match, or lighter will not work in zero gravity without artificial convection (such as a fan).

May I direct you to: Can a Candle Burn in Zero Gravity? [about.com]

(The short answer is "yes, but strangely.")

See also: Video (shot with a Russian potato) of a candle burning on Mir [youtube.com] .

Re:one a side note (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about 8 months ago | (#45384555)

it's the stuff that keeps the fire fed or where the hot material goes that involves gravity in a big way.

the another reply has a youtube link, but basically things burn in a sphere. with a little fan it would burn quite normally, I suppose.

but this is quite a big waste of rocket fuel! having it go by chernobyl would have been grander.

of course the whole olympics are worth paying zero attention to - AND THAT IS THE REAL WAY TO BOYCOTT OLYMPICS! if you can't decide on a reason to do so just print out some of the more popular one's, cover your wall with them and throw a dart at it.

Re:one a side note (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45384681)

Technically everything you can see is just photons otherwise how would you see it...
Secondly photons are effect by gravity look up a black hole.

Re:one a side note (1)

Deadstick (535032) | about 8 months ago | (#45385103)

Yes, it's thermal radiation by high-temperature gases, usually ionized. But in zero-G, it will quickly envelop itself in a ball of inert, burned gas which blocks out the oxygen, and it will go out. You could keep it going with a small fan.

Re:one a side note (1)

Shinobi (19308) | about 8 months ago | (#45384499)

Re:one a side note (1)

alexander_686 (957440) | about 8 months ago | (#45385373)

Nice video but it is a bit on the long side.

Re:one a side note (2)

sjames (1099) | about 8 months ago | (#45385529)

The 'flame' is spherical but quickly goes out since there is no convection to replace the CO2 with fresh oxygen.

So ... what you did was ... (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 8 months ago | (#45384485)

You took an inanimate metal rod on a space walk. Yeah. That's great.

I think it's one of those "gotta have been there" things.

Re:So ... what you did was ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45384571)

An inanimate metal rod in space did save Homer Simpson. That counts for something.

Re:So ... what you did was ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45384579)

I think it's more of a "nobody else in the world can do this" statement. USA can't do it any more. UK can't do it. China couldn't do it for 2008.

Re:So ... what you did was ... (1)

FatLittleMonkey (1341387) | about 8 months ago | (#45387727)

For $50 billion dollars, you think they could have chipped in a little to build a flame carrier to safely reach ISS alight, and a torch that can be lit in a vacuum during the space walk.

Fire (1)

girlintraining (1395911) | about 8 months ago | (#45384565)

Actually, it couldn't be lit because you need gravity to have fire; Well, sort of. There's no heat column and thus fire is rather anemic in space. That nice big flaming torch would look really peculiar in space... it would puff out bubbles of plasma that would then float around and extinguish... spewing fine particulate matter and byproduct gas everywhere -- which is, as NASA indicated, dangerous to the crew and equipment.

Re:Fire (1)

AK Marc (707885) | about 8 months ago | (#45384745)

Take it outside and light it. It would look pretty spectacular. Though it would thrust the astronaut in the other direction, so make sure he's braced and tethered.

Re:Fire (1)

wisnoskij (1206448) | about 8 months ago | (#45385269)

Also a horrible waste of Oxygen.

Stolen you say? (1, Funny)

Zaiff Urgulbunger (591514) | about 8 months ago | (#45384591)

For a split-second after I read the headline, I thought it meant the torch had been taken, as in stolen, whilst out on it's space-walk.

So lets pretend that that's what it really meant because it makes for a more interesting topic!

The whole thing is stupid (1)

bussdriver (620565) | about 8 months ago | (#45384641)

Just when I think adults can't act even more childish and silly, they go do something like this. Whatever symbolism it may have had is gone when they just stop the reaction and start it again-- why as well put the Olympic logo on cigarette lighters and let everybody start and stop the branded "special" flame.

Re:The whole thing is stupid (1)

TangoMargarine (1617195) | about 8 months ago | (#45385585)

They didn't put it out; it hasn't been lit yet.

Re:The whole thing is stupid (1)

bussdriver (620565) | about 8 months ago | (#45410013)

Does it not seem childish and silly? I don't care if they lit it yet.

They way they start the thing and carry it around trying to not let it go out... then put it out later. I mean aside from all the expense related to the silly flame thing... completely ignoring the all the crass commercialization, massive corporate welfare, extreme training, and the fact it they lost every scrap of politics which was the point of bringing it back in the first place. I won't even go into how sporting events can be used to get the masses try to act more civilized; which doesn't make one feel hopeful for humanity.

Re:The whole thing is stupid (1)

CanadianMacFan (1900244) | about 8 months ago | (#45386637)

I thought the whole idea of spending over $50B on a bunch of sports is kind of silly in the first place. Imagine the good that money could have done helping people instead. Yes some people got jobs building the facilities but most of the money was lost due to corruption. All over to see who can skate/ski/etc the best.

Re:The whole thing is stupid (1)

muttoj (572791) | about 8 months ago | (#45389965)

Offcourse all the research at CERN is lifesaving....

Re:The whole thing is stupid (1)

Megane (129182) | about 8 months ago | (#45387525)

...or they could light something else with the flame for a few days, then re-light it from that flame when they get back. Lrn2EternalFlame.

Re:The whole thing is stupid (1)

clickson (2887959) | about 8 months ago | (#45391051)

Flashlight maybe? The Olympic flashlight sponsored by Duracell!

Seriously? (0)

powerlinekid (442532) | about 8 months ago | (#45384601)

So the thing that holds the part that is lit on fire for some sporting event very 4 years was carried around in space?

How is this anything other than some PR for the next Olympics and why is it on slashdot? There is nothing interesting about this. Now if they had designed some contraption to allow the flame to burn in space that would be something.

It was not lit aboard the space station (1)

Skiron (735617) | about 8 months ago | (#45385057)

So, we have a rather expensive 'stick'. If it isn't lit, then it isn't a torch - it's a STICK

Re:It was not lit aboard the space station (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45385653)

I know, right? What's the point of carrying a torch that ISN'T LIT?

"Super-expensive torch transportation services brought to you by POCKOCMOC."

Homophobia (1)

Optimal Cynic (2886377) | about 8 months ago | (#45385651)

An unlit torch is a good symbol for a country where flaming is punishable by prison (at best) or being beaten to death by thugs (at worst).

Boycott Sochi until Putin figures out "human rights".

Re:Homophobia (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#45385809)

Bullshit. Being gay is not illegal in Russia. What is illegal is gay propaganda.

Re:Homophobia (1)

femtobyte (710429) | about 8 months ago | (#45386981)

Where "gay propaganda" is saying anything the least bit supportive of the rights of gays to coexist in society. Saying that being gay is something people are born into rather than a lifestyle choice to spit in the eye of baby jeebus is "gay propaganda" in Russia, and may get you locked up.

Interesting. (1)

FilatovEV (1520307) | about 8 months ago | (#45389235)

It's the same thing Soviet people were told about the United States.

A Project For Some Engineering Class (1)

Toad-san (64810) | about 8 months ago | (#45385873)

Design an add-on, a special mount or container, for the Olympic Torch that WOULD let it be lit and burn in orbit, even outside the space ship or satellite!

It can't be THAT hard, right? A sufficient flow of "air" (oxygen and whatever) to ensure burning and continued mixing of fuel and oxidizer.

should have been lit, in space (1)

Gothmolly (148874) | about 8 months ago | (#45387481)

via some kind of H2+O2 torch - wait for an orbit around the world, and you can say that the torch has been carried around the world. As it is it was just a piece of crap that they boosted up to LEO.

So... (1)

msobkow (48369) | about 8 months ago | (#45387811)

Did they have someone running on a treadmill, carrying the torch (lit or unlit) on the flight up? Will there be a runner carrying the torch on the way down?

If not, it's just a piece of cargo and a publicity stunt with absolutely no real meaning. It is the carrying of the (usually lit) torch that has meaning, not the torch itself.

When is the first tweet from spacewalk? (1)

gelfling (6534) | about 8 months ago | (#45390247)

Because nothing screams success like tweeting.

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