French astronaut Thomas Pescet has been on board the International Space Station since Saturday, April 24th. But before humans were sent into the universe, other animals were like guinea pigs. “It’s in your nature” and it’s also in space.
The first animal sent into space was called … Snowy! In 1954, the designer published Hergé We walked on the moon, And discovered Tintin dog weightlessness. Fiction was only a few years before reality: in 1957 the Soviet Union had already sent its first dog into space.
A dog named Laïka, a bastard who plucked it on the streets of Moscow, because the Soviets believed that a stray dog would be more durable. But Leica couldn’t stand the heat and died in Sputnik’s tiny capsule. She was the first female astronaut in history, for a rather trivial reason: The dog didn’t have enough room to raise its foot to urinate …
Soviet Dogs, American Apes
After Laka, two more dogs served as guinea pigs. Less well known, but returned alive, allowing the Soviet Union to send its first human into space, Yuri Gagarin, in 1961. ” The important thing then, and still true now, is not to lose face. Michel Viso, of the National Center for Space Studies in Paris, explains. Losing an astronaut, when you first realize it, can be embarrassing for the astronaut, and difficult for his family and people. But it’s very embarrassing for the government that sent it. »
The Soviets won the first round of invasion and a space “contest” by sending a dog, then a human. But the Americans largely preceded it, with the first steps on the moon, in 1969. Like the Soviet Union, the United States also used animals to prepare their manned flights, and the monkeys in this case are the kind closest to humans. The first chimpanzee sent into space, Ham, came from Cameroon.
Felicity’s tragic fate
France, the third space power at the end of the 1960s, sent into space a mouse, a Hector, a monkey, Martin and a cat, Felicity. He came back alive, but was killed, for an autopsy. Ultimately useful sacrifice. “ We noticed that partial weightlessness causes disturbances in attention, in the functioning of the brain, which explains why everything is written when astronauts work in the sky. You really have to do checklists »And the Remember Michel Viso, of Cnes.
But before Laïka or Félicette, even before invading space, humans sent other animals into the air. “ Animals often precede humans in dangerous activitiesToday’s veterinarian in charge of exogenous biology, and the study of life in the universe, recalls in Cnes. This is especially the case of rooster, sheep and ducks, the first passengers on a hot air balloon flight, at the end of the eighteenth century.»
Since then, animals have been sent on board the International Space Station: worms or rodents, on which scientific experiments have been conducted. This time, Tomas Pescet took small points with him, this living being is still full of mystery on Earth.
“But what’s the point?”
The point is neither an animal, nor a plant, nor a fungus, but in your nature: they are found in the bushes, protected from light. It consists of a yellowish substance, slightly sticky, that owes its French name to the American film Blobs, Who recounted the invasion of a sticky alien animal feeding on humans. But our bubble, Vesarum PolisephalumAccording to its scientific name, it consumes only bacteria and fungi.
It is made of a single cell, while the number of humans is 100,000 billion. Without a brain, but with cognitive faculties that question science; During an experiment in Japan, blob developed a metro network in Tokyo that was more efficient than that developed by engineers. The point advances one centimeter per hour. It can double in size within 24 hours. The largest point found in the United States was the size of 140 football fields.