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This Video of a Russian Experiment Looks Like Real-Life Gravity

Don't waste your money on the DVD, the Russian prequel was way scarier.

suitsat1

In the wake of Gravity‘s Awards Season success, Sploid has this eerie video to remind us that Astronaut Ryan Stone’s horrifying space odyssey essentially happened “for real” back in 2006. Yes, the Russian experiment was all in the name of education, but that doesn’t make the footage any less bone-chilling.

As haunting as these images of a human form tumbling uncontrollably through space are, obviously that’s not a real cosmonaut being thrown out of the airlock and into certain doom; it’s just an empty Russian Orlan suit.

In a bizarre experiment, the suit was filled with a radio communications system and launched on February 3rd, 2006 to transmit data and images back to Earth. Says Frank Bauer of NASA’s Goddard Space Center, “SuitSat is a Russian brainstorm, some of our Russian partners in the ISS program … had an idea: Maybe we can turn old spacesuits into useful satellites.”

The video is a terrifying reminder of how helpless a free-floating astronaut would actually be in space, but the intention behind the experiment was sweet—the suit was used to broadcast messages from Earth’s school children. (Probably, “Aaah! We now grasp our own insignificance and helplessness greater than ever before!”)

SuitSat-1 remained in orbit for 7 months before falling into the Earth’s atmosphere and disintegrating. So, now we know what happened to George Clooney.

(via Sploid, image via NASA.gov )

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