Commander Chris Hadfield is currently aboard the International Space Station, orbiting Earth 16 times a day. He took a break from joking around with William Shatner and tweeting awesome pictures to give a Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything) yesterday afternoon. It started when he tweeted the picture above of himself and the Reddit alien logo with the caption, “The first confirmed alien sighting in space: It must mean it’s time for my Reddit AMA! Hope for intelligent life!”
During his AMA, the ISS was orbiting above the Indian Ocean. Chris Hadfield was using his laptop, which communicates with a server in Houston via satellite relay. It isn’t fast enough to watch video or Skype, but he can use Reddit and Twitter. And if you haven’t checked out his Twitter, you probably should.
Below we’ve collected some of our favorite answers from Chris Hadfield’s AMA, which taught us things like “Per Ardua Ad Astra.” (“Through adversity to the stars.”) We think Redditor NotMathMan821 summed it up best by saying, “Guys… This comment just came from outer space.”
When a Redditor’s 7-year-old daughter wanted to know how to become an astronaut:
Yep, it’s still down.
Here are some of his pictures of Australia, and here’s the Bahamas, via Twitter:
When asked about the Russian meteor:
“We didn’t see the meteorite that did all the damage in Russia, as we were on the other side of the Earth. But I see small ones burn up between ISS and the earth every day.”
When asked what the scariest thing he’s seen is:
“I watched a large meteorite burn up between me and Australia, and to think of that hypersonic dumb lump of rock randomly hurtling into us instead sent a shiver up my back.”
The quote which, surprisingly, made me the most jealous:
“I love sleeping weightless. No mattress, no pillow, no sore shoulder, no hot spots. Just relax every muscle in your body and drift off to sleep.”
When asked what the stars look like without the atmosphere blocking anything:
“It looks like a carpet of countless tiny perfect unblinking lights in endless velvet, with the Milky Way as a glowing area of paler texture.”
We’ll end with this GIF, posted in response to one of Chris Hadfield’s answers by Redditor datmass.