This week, on the 50th anniversary of the return of Apollo 13, three astronauts will return to earth. This will be a very difficult return for them since they left earth at least seven months ago. Since that time, the world they circle has ground to a halt due to coronavirus.
A World That Has Changed Completely Since They Left…
Two of the three astronauts on the International Space Station are NASA astronauts and it will certainly be a strange re-entry for them. As it is, returning to earth 50 years after the brave Apollo 13 crew landed is quite momentous already. At that time, an entire world awaited the return of those three astronauts from their ill-fated mission to the moon. Now, these three astronauts will be the ones that have been observing a response to tragedy.
When these astronauts departed earth, things were quite different. One of them, Jessica Meir, left for the ISS back in September to join Andrew Morgan who had already been there for two months (the third is a Russian cosmonaut Oleg Skripochka). Think back to what you were doing in July and September of 2019 – no thought at all of lockdown and coronavirus.
Meir had this to say during a news conference last week, ““I think that I will actually feel more isolated on the Earth than I did up here because that’s just part of our expected routine up here.”
In case you want to see a little bit of what astronauts go through in training, NASA actually has some training videos that you can follow here – something interesting during quarantine lockdowns! Also, the astronauts currently on the ISS recently shared some isolation workout tips – they would know!
They have said that earth looks the same from where they are, satellite photos have been all around lately showing the stoppage of movement around the world over the last two months.
Featured image courtesy of NASA