Space Flight

How does an astronaut navigate in space?
Answered by Discovery Channel
  • Discovery Channel

    Discovery Channel

  1. Astronauts have a hard time learning how to get around in space, both inside and outside of the spacecraft. Before a flight, astronauts spend time in large water tanks, simulating microgravity by walking in a space suit under water. To help astronauts keep their position while working around the spacecraft, the cabin is designed with footholds and hand restraints. To allow astronauts to move freely in outer space without being tied to the spacecraft, NASA developed special rocket maneuvering devices. One, known as the Manned Maneuvering Unit (MMU), is a chair powered by gas and controlled with a joystick. Another device, called the Simplified Aid for Extravehicular Activity Rescue (SAFER), can help an astronaut navigate his way back to his shuttle or space station. These devices have been tested by astronauts during space walks.

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