What Goes Up, Musn’t Come Down

Did you know that in order to cut down on cargo weight, astronauts sometimes leave behind cameras to burn up upon re-entry? Me neither. A few days ago we showed you this photograph taken by astronaut Paolo Nespoli. While he saved the memory card, the Nikon D3x and 24-120mm lens were left behind. That’s a quick way to burn $8000.

Nespoli clicked away for about a half-hour, from an orbital vantage point about 600 feet (200 meters) from the space station. He stowed the cameras’┬ádata storage┬ácards in the Soyuz descent module. But the cameras themselves were left in the orbital module, a separate chamber that separates from the descent module and burns up in the atmosphere. That’s standard practice for Soyuz re-entries: The astronauts take only what they need and shed the excess baggage to cut down on weight … even if that excess baggage retails for about $8,000, as was the case for the Nikon. – Cosmic Log

[PetaPixel via CosmicLog]

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