I'm Astronaut Col. Terry Virts – Ask Me Anything!
9747 upvotes
1105 comments
Astro-Terry
4 days ago

Hi Reddit, I’m Col. Terry Virts. I’m an astronaut who commanded the International Space Station from 2014-2015. I also spent two weeks piloting the Space Shuttle Endeavour in 2010. During my time in space, I took more than 300,000 photos of earth, conducted hundreds of experiments, did everything from shooting an IMAX movie, to replacing a crew mate's tooth filling. And I went on three spacewalks. I’m now a professional speaker, photographer and author. And today I’m here to answer your questions about anything and everything!

Proof: https://i.redd.it/ux2nxl3ce4s21.jpg

Edit: Hi all, I'm gonna leave it here because of the Notre Dame news. Thanks so much for all your questions, I've loved answering them. Anybody wanna do it again?

I'm Astronaut Col. Terry Virts – Ask Me Anything!

Hi Reddit, I’m Col. Terry Virts. I’m an astronaut who commanded the International Space Station from 2014-2015. I also spent two weeks piloting the Space Shuttle Endeavour in 2010. During my time in space, I took more than 300,000 photos of earth, conducted hundreds of experiments, did everything from shooting an IMAX movie, to replacing a crew mate's tooth filling. And I went on three spacewalks. I’m now a professional speaker, photographer and author. And today I’m here to answer your questions about anything and everything!

Proof: https://i.redd.it/ux2nxl3ce4s21.jpg

Edit: Hi all, I'm gonna leave it here because of the Notre Dame news. Thanks so much for all your questions, I've loved answering them. Anybody wanna do it again?

cowens89
830
4 days ago

When you did finally arrive back on earth, what would you say was the biggest struggle adjusting to being back on an actual planet?

Astro-Terry
1231
4 days ago

Being dizzy! Things felt heavy, but I was definitely dizzy. Felt like 🍷🍷🍷

deadfermata
588
4 days ago

One of the rare AMAs where the person is simply here to answer questions and not sell something.

Thanks for your service and being here. /r/spacex and /r/nasa should get in here!

What is your favorite space film? And why?

Astro-Terry
713
4 days ago

It was INTERSTELLAR, because I love the story about the father and his daughter. But now the new APOLLO 11 film, directed by Todd Miller, is my fave, as my heart was racing faster than when I first launched when I watched it!

deadfermata
105
4 days ago

Yes. Thanks for answering.

I saw it in IMAX.

iLike-Guns
14
4 days ago

Apollo 13 also is an impressive movie

deadfermata
6
4 days ago

Imagine how much more impressive the reality of being stuck in a spacecraft it. It's amazing how they didn't have PTSD....

MrMoffett
6
4 days ago

I have known Buzz Aldrin personally (humblebrag) most of my life, and you are getting close to being equal with him as my favorite astronaut!!!

Thank you for committing your life to advance humanity (and you physically) into space, and hopefully beyond to new planets soon!!! I hope you are around to see it, and maybe make one last flight!

dustbin3
3
4 days ago

I've heard Buzz is a bit... cranky. What's he been like to you?

cwleveck
8
4 days ago

Buzz is one of the nicest warmest guy's I've ever met. In his own way. He's a straight shooter tough but fair. I didn't know him as a younger guy just since the mid 2000's. And I wasn't close to him. I worked on a project where I spent some time kind of arms length with him. So i heard a lot of office or water cooler talk. If you were genuine with him and did a good job he was nice to you. If you were just out for an autograph or were in anyway phoney with him,he just wouldn't waste any time with you. He seemed to get frustrated with incessant dumb questions. But who wouldn't.

Astro-Terry
1178
4 days ago

oh yeah

dennismiller2024
420
4 days ago

haha I feel that

DaIntrawebz
161
4 days ago

I’m laughing so hard at this exchange

labortooth
70
4 days ago

Astro Terry is for the people

RicoSuave1881
60
4 days ago

This has to be one of the chillest AMAs ever

DiDalt
3
4 days ago

I literally lol'd when I read it.

burve_mcgregor
3
4 days ago

Oh wow me too we should be friends

B737LadyPilot
159
4 days ago

um yes please!!! Thanks TV!!'

Zeklyn_
49
4 days ago

It would be great if you could do it again some time, loved to read through them!

outer_space_agent
27
4 days ago

Yes please!

LePure
23
4 days ago

Yes! I'd love it if you did it again.

totally_not_a_zombie
21
4 days ago

I missed it... of course I want to do it again, duh. You're a friggin astronaut! AND you're a cool person. Also there's no such thing as having enough of space related AMAs.

therealpantsgnome
17
4 days ago

I would love to, I really enjoyed your answers. Thanks for doing this

Gogo-R6
14
4 days ago

How can someone say no? Such a big opportunity to talk to an astronaut

deadfermata
2
4 days ago

Flat earthers would say no. They don't want this spherical earth propaganda!

Rigante_Black
4
4 days ago

Bummed I missed this one, but I am loving reading through your answers, thank you!

OneShot2killz
3
4 days ago

This really needs to be up voted. No doubt.

MrMoffett
3
4 days ago

Please just come back to this one when it's appropriate! We can keep asking questions here!!!

umangd03
3
4 days ago

Yes. Pls pls yes

RedHorseStrong
2
4 days ago

Encore!

lonestwalker
2
4 days ago

Yeah please do it again. I just read it and it has ended already:(

Birdseeding
555
4 days ago

What's it like trying to fall asleep in microgravity? Is it easy or difficult to adjust to mentally?

Astro-Terry
876
4 days ago

I was worried about that at first, but it was actually the easiest and best sleep I've ever had in my life!

CheeseCurdCommunism
309
4 days ago

This is interesting. Is that because of the true complete weight distribution your body has in space where as on earth there are pressure points?

Astro-Terry
556
4 days ago

IDK why, but I think that's it. You're just floating, so no pressure points.

ChRoNicBuRrItOs
66
4 days ago

That sounds amazing. Was it difficult getting used to sleeping with gravity?

labortooth
90
4 days ago

Gravity is a promiscuous lover

deadfermata
11
4 days ago

It is also an obsessed lover. You try to get away but it never lets you go.

JesusLordofWeed
5
4 days ago

Very clingy though

DougVossen
2
4 days ago
leaky_eddie
2
4 days ago
PuppyBreath
7
4 days ago

I suffer from 2 types of inflammatory diseases and no pressure points just sound heavenly.

KnightOfRen89
2
4 days ago

Was it because your wife and kids weren't around? Lol

Danitoba
5
4 days ago

I suspect its extremely easy because your body is pretty much totally relaxed. Edit: OP pretty much confirmed!

fr0ng
511
4 days ago

What are you supposed to do if you see a UFO in space?

edit: the fact that this wasn't answered makes me lol. I WANT TO BELIEVE.

scoops22
241
4 days ago

Didn’t answer - UFOs confirmed

deadfermata
11
4 days ago

Possible the original Terry Virts is gone and this dude is just a reptilian?

PM_THOSE_SIDEBOOB
97
4 days ago

Turn the cameras off or look away

A1A5KA
41
4 days ago

Both. In that order.

gamle_kvitrafn
50
4 days ago

How come he didn't answer this one?

coastal-spirit
57
4 days ago
josewe
18
4 days ago

its funny because there werent that many questions, he saw this one for sure but he didnt answer... is too suspicious lol

fr0ng
9
4 days ago

this was literally the 4th question on the AMA. he definitely saw it. he could have joked about it but didn't even do that, which makes it super suspect.

totally_not_a_zombie
7
4 days ago

Because he's laughing his ass off at all the confused replies most likely. What an evil genius.

heyitsronin33
6
4 days ago

Because you're not supposed to say anything if you do.

ozyxcv
42
4 days ago

Secretly contact a nutty FBI agent who works in a basement with his weirdly catholic partner until the government catches on and disappears you. That's been the standard operating procedure for like 20 years now I think

koy5
35
4 days ago

Not talk about it, such a good answer.

NotThirstyEnough
25
4 days ago

👽

kim-kardashian-weast
22
4 days ago

Suspicious that this is one of the few questions unanswered??

vandu_izuzu
5
4 days ago

This is my question too :)

The_Jeet
7
4 days ago

Nothing because it's most likely US Tech. :)

packet_llama
5
4 days ago

Try to identify it.

constantbonanza
481
4 days ago

Since you are a government employee, do you get to take off for federal holidays while in space?

Astro-Terry
766
4 days ago

They give us a few. We combine them between U.S. and Russian holidays. Orthodox Russia celebrates Xmas on Jan. 7, so we do a lot of holidaying between Dec. 25 and Jan. 7.

kufunuguh
284
4 days ago

What does xmas look like in the ISS?

The_Emerald_Archer_
521
4 days ago

It's really difficult to keep the gifts under the tree.

Astro-Terry
424
4 days ago

LOL!

StillStucknaTriangle
25
4 days ago

Could you respond to me so I can tell all my friends that I once talked to an astronaut and NOT be a liar?

dylmye
41
4 days ago

hey i'm not an astronaut but i give you permission to lie to your mates

StillStucknaTriangle
25
4 days ago

Thanks, new friend!

Hey did I ever tell you about totally real 100% true time that I talked to an astronaut? I'm pretty much a big deal 😏

dylmye
6
4 days ago

Woah are you for real?? Pics or it didn't happen!

chewis
3
4 days ago

I was the top comment on the Barack Obama AMA a few years back.

Well, no I'm making that up.

Astro-Terry
510
4 days ago

Messy ;-) We have a tree and decorations and a Santa Claus. So yeah, lots of stuff.

chris480
133
4 days ago

What's the ISS policy on spiked eggnog or any alcoholic beverage in space?

Danitoba
65
4 days ago

What do you think??

DaBlueCaboose
67
4 days ago

Well, anecdotally I've heard the Russians send up some vodka with every Soyuz...

Roko128
24
4 days ago

Could be true bc he is refusing to answer

Danitoba
7
4 days ago

Really?? That would be both dangerous and cool as hell!

My_Password_Is_____
4
4 days ago

I could be wrong on this, but I'm pretty sure that started as part of their survival stuff in the early days and has been held on to as a tradition. Even if I'm wrong on that, the Russians are huge on tradition when it comes to spaceflight anyway. For example, when Yuri Gagarin made his first spaceflight, he had to pee on his way to the ship on the launch pad, so they stopped the bus he was on and Yuri got out and peed on the tire of the bus and continued on. Now, whenever anybody launches from Baikonur, they do the same. The bus pulls over about halfway there, the astronauts get off and go pee on the tire. Female astronauts bring along a bottle filled with urine or water to do it as well. I'd link a source if I had one, but I read about it in CAPT Scott Kelly's autobiography.

fallenreaper
2
4 days ago

Don't ask don't tell. ;)

edudlive
4
4 days ago

There is either an episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind or Stuff They Don't Want You to Know where they cover astronauts and drugs.

LuckyJamnik
5
4 days ago

Jesus. I wonder how good acid trip would feel on ISS.

SecretCoyote
2
4 days ago

Wanna give us the highlights?

edudlive
2
4 days ago

From what i recall it isn't unheard of for them to take shots before launch. Also, they take a datura based anti-nausea medication

SecretCoyote
4
4 days ago

That's wild. I can see a drink or two helping to calm the nerves before a launch... But still. Getting a Launching while Under the Influence ticket must wreck your insurance.

edudlive
4
4 days ago

Who pulls you over through?? :o

JacquesStraps
2
4 days ago

Asking the real questions!

Sparkie86
2
4 days ago

Humanitys' collective future depends on it.

trevor426
2
4 days ago

I love the fact that you guys had a Santa. I'm just imagining a conversation between the people doing the payload and while they're checking everything off they realized they forgot to pack the Santa costume. Thank you for your service not only to America, but all of mankind.

lobotomyjones
17
4 days ago

Floating goodies with a view of the Earth, I think.

shubhamsy777
400
4 days ago

What do you think about SpaceX?

Astro-Terry
1052
4 days ago

I'm a big fan of SpaceX. They sent up two cargo ships of food and clean underwear for me while I was up there, so I'm 100% supportive of commercial space flights!

wubbels89
116
4 days ago

What’s the underwear of choice while in space?!

ChRoNicBuRrItOs
197
4 days ago

Lightspeed Briefs

woofnsmash
135
4 days ago

Buzz Lightwear

jerk_17
21
4 days ago

(☞゚ヮ゚)☞

FoxyJustice
13
4 days ago

*objects in mirror are less attractive than they appear

SonOfaFlynn
6
4 days ago

This dream sponsored by LIGHTSPEED BRIEFS

Atlanticking
6
4 days ago

Futurama we will miss you

_herrmann_
7
4 days ago

Still an ongoing problem. bonus points for cool acronym apparently

ZakkLaVey
2
4 days ago

Y-wing fronts

MrMoffett
4
4 days ago

Elon Musk, man of the people ;)

Autarch_Kade
4
4 days ago

two cargo ships of food and clean underwear for me

That's a lot of underwear

deadfermata
2
4 days ago

I hope you are on second season of One Strange Rock!

OrganicDroid
386
4 days ago

What are some “next big things” that you think humans need to do or achieve in space in the coming decades?

Astro-Terry
728
4 days ago

I think getting to Mars is the 21st century goal, but we need to get back to the moon first and use it as a testing ground

Ryzexen
67
4 days ago

I thought the Moon wasn't on any more NASA plans.

spear_carrier
119
4 days ago

Spoilers ahead.

Spectre1-4
67
4 days ago

The CIA is using the Nazis Secret Moon Base on the Far Side of the Moon. Why else would a JEWISH lander get “lost”.

W👁KE

JUNGLEJlM
39
4 days ago

NASA unfortunately has a tendency to get its funding pulled by people who think the Final Frontier isnt all that important.

Waphex
11
4 days ago

Moonbase Alpha IRL

kyled85
6
4 days ago

JOHN MADDEN

CantFeelMyBrain
3
4 days ago

Aeiou

mitchmatch1
3
4 days ago

BRBRBRBRBRBRBRBRBR

do-this-next
4
4 days ago

Hint: Air Force space command is bigger than NASA

jaqueeb
2
4 days ago

It’s actually the focus right now with LOPG and plans to put boots on the ground sooner than later

wintremute
2
4 days ago

There is a lunar orbiting space station on the books.

ReasonablyBadass
2
4 days ago

Why? Mars and Moon are so different, what can be tested there?

RollingStoner2
5
4 days ago

Mostly for experience I think. If you can’t build and maintain a small colony for astronauts on the moon you’re definitely not going to be able to do it on any other planet anytime soon.

CrashTheMexican
305
4 days ago

Hey Terry! I'm 21 years old and my dream is to be an Astronaut. I've decided that the best path I can take to do this would be to join the Air Force this year and try to become a pilot, before eventually applying at NASA. Is there anything you would recommend to a young man starting this journey? Things you had wish you had known or done differently? The biggest thing that concerns me is when I select from the variety of jobs that are available upon entering the Air Force, I imagine being any kind of aircraft mechanic, or an engineer would be the best job experience I could have before I'm a pilot, and ultimately try to get selected by NASA, but a few other jobs, such as SERE and Linguistics are very attractive to me as well. If I want to follow this dream, would you recommend that I all in on mechanics/aircraft maintenance jobs?

Astro-Terry
434
4 days ago

Do what you love and are passionate about -- that will give you your best chance to succeed. Being a mechanic is a great thing. When I was going through the last astronaut applications, one was a NASCAR mechanic and that stood out as something really interesting.

CrashTheMexican
114
4 days ago

Thank you very much for your reply and the advice. One of these days I hope to walk in the footsteps of both you and the rest of the Astronauts that have put in the hard work and dedication to achieve what you all have. This is definitely my dream, and I intend on following it through to the end. I hope you have a great day and thanks again Col. Virts!

inlandaussie
6
4 days ago

I wish you the best of luck! I'd love to hear from you in 20 years to see how great your dream John is :)

CrashTheMexican
6
4 days ago

Thank you very much! Hopefully I'll be able to let you know from the ISS ✌

inlandaussie
3
4 days ago

*job (silly auto correct and silly me for not looking). That would be great to here.

I'll sit here with my coffee flooding you with passive encouragement

Don't let any setbacks get the better of you along the way. I expect those greetings from NASA!

khari44
2
4 days ago

User name concerns me...

CrashTheMexican
4
4 days ago

"Crash" for Crash Bandicoot. My favorite game growing up, and I am Mexican. Nothing to worry about here man.

oregano23
2
4 days ago

This was such a sweet exchange, best of luck to you!!

VelociRaptorDriver
9
4 days ago

Hey dude, just wanted to let you know the path to becoming an Air Force pilot is very tough coming from an enlisted position. If you'd like more info I can provide a little insight since I am a USAF pilot, though I may not have the best info for your current situation.

SoFloYasuo
5
4 days ago

Your best bet of becoming a USAF fighter pilot, which is what most people think of, is going the the Air Force Academy. It's a tough route to commission through but it's not impossible.

The-space-explorer
3
4 days ago

Another good route is becoming civilian experimental pilot! As others have said its really tough to become an usaf pilot. Maybe look into getting an aeronautical engineering degree and working on your pilots license. Even just getting your ppl is a big step in the right direction:)

Dbbbfff
3
4 days ago

If there is life on other planets, how close to humans do you think they would be?

PFthrowaway4454
11
4 days ago

You have to reply to the main post directly if you want him to see your question.

N781VP
2
4 days ago

Don't forget that every single branch has an aviation component. Generally, in order to become a pilot in any branch you must be an Officer, not simply enlisted. To be an officer there are several routes, but you will need to get into Officer Candidate School, which is boot camp, but for officers. You can either join a ROTC or for example the Marine Corps has other programs like PLC. regardless you will need a college degree, preferably a Stem major to be more competitive.

Chaosritter
298
4 days ago

What kind of entertainment does the ISS have?

Astro-Terry
658
4 days ago

NASA uplinks us mp3 files to watch. Sports and movies and GOT and my Pandora radio stations.

who_is_Dandelo
375
4 days ago

Watching Game of Thrones in space is the coolest thing I've heard in a while. This is a great AMA - I'm going to share it with my 11yo science junkie when he gets home from school :) Thanks so much for taking the time to do this.

deadfermata
43
4 days ago

Yes. Lord Terry of house Virts, warden of the ISS, protector of the truss and hand of the Lord Commander Shkaplerov.

Bluest_waters
151
4 days ago

Did you watch 2001 Space Odyssey? Or Alien?

I don't think I could handle it

Astro-Terry
302
4 days ago

Yes, I watched both while in space. I love great storytelling and that's why I want to work in the entertainment business in the future.

deadfermata
5
4 days ago

Paging /u/MotherMovie can you get Terry in your next season of One Strange Rock?

PLEASE!

Chaosritter
72
4 days ago

I'm sure the crew would enjoy Gravity.

Astro-Terry
217
4 days ago

The guy who shot GRAVITY, Chivo (Emmanuel Lubezki), is a friend and hero of mine :) That was a fantastic movie!

Chaosritter
44
4 days ago

Ever watched the original Solaris?

Astro-Terry
83
4 days ago

Have only seen the Clooney one, but it's on my watch list :)

Magnus_Helgisson
3
4 days ago

I recently read the book, and it's a masterpiece. Haven't seen the movie, but if it's half as good as the book, then it's worth watching.

cbelt3
4
4 days ago

The original film was very Russian... inner thoughts and all.

Magnus_Helgisson
5
4 days ago

I'm actually wondering which language was the book originally written in (most likely Polish), because I read an obvious English-Russian translation. The book had all those inner thoughts too, but they were described in such a way you believed it all.

Also now I'm reading Tales of Pirx the Pilot by the same author and there was an old Polish-Soviet movie (Inquest of Pilot Pirx) as well that astonished me as a kid with the sight of tearing tissue on a robot's hand.

deadfermata
12
4 days ago

Can you imagine you're watching the film with your crew mates and then you hear a knock on the window and you go out to check and then you see one of your crew mates out there and you look back and see that same crew mate asking you 'What is it?'

claymachine
12
4 days ago

"mp3 file to watch?" did NASA had technology to hide video behind mp3 files?

DangerousImplication
2
4 days ago

I think he meant to say mp4

_aidanb
301
4 days ago

Is a hotdog a sandwich?

Astro-Terry
774
4 days ago

I think of it as a vegetable actually

ClementineChime
343
4 days ago

I think we need to send you back to space for giving that answer.

woofnsmash
51
4 days ago

The space radiation man, fries ya like an egg.

zall35
6
4 days ago

This is your brain on space

dasatain
290
4 days ago

What was unexpected or surprising about being in space? Something you didn’t expect until you were there?

Astro-Terry
637
4 days ago

Seeing a shade of blue I'd never seen before.

bobbletank
99
4 days ago

Tell me more

StillStucknaTriangle
307
4 days ago

Well you see, he saw a shade of blue that was unlike any shade he had seen on Earth prior to that moment, and it was surprising. Hope this helps!

kmdani
12
4 days ago

you are a true gentleman!

Technetium_Hat
3
4 days ago

And a scholar!

Tonytarium
40
4 days ago

Check out One Strange Rock on Netflix, the astronauts on that show talked about the swirls of crazy beautiful shades of blue in the water on earth. Bright streaks of light blue that are actually trillions of diatoms in the water that you can't really see until you're that far away. Breath taking apparently, I'd give anything to see it.

Nomen_Heroum
9
4 days ago

He might be referring to the flashes of light astronauts see in outer space because of cosmic radiation.

IchBumseZiegen
9
4 days ago

Was it a sentient shade of blue?

816am
4
4 days ago

I’d read that book.

k0bimus
6
4 days ago

Zima Blue

BuymyGookiGooki
3
4 days ago

My favourite episode of LDAR

HandsOnGeek
3
4 days ago

You met a Hooloovoo?

That's amazing! /jk

Daemonbot
2
4 days ago

In another reply you mention feeling like you were seeing things that humans shouldn't see. Now you're telling us there is a new shade of blue? Lovecraft is turning in his grave shouting warnings about the Color of Madness and Azathoth.

sodahiccups
2
4 days ago

Did you take a picture of it?

JediDovahkiin
282
4 days ago

What was the most badass thing you ever did in space?

Astro-Terry
606
4 days ago

Spacewalking is cool, cutting my crewmate Samantha's hair was pretty stressful, but filming the IMAX movie "A Beautiful Planet" was the most impactful

EgemenVonRichtofen
268
4 days ago

Scott Kelly wrote that you messed up that haircut. It was one of the funniest parts of the book.

Astro-Terry
372
4 days ago

It would be way less stressful to cut Scott's hair ;-)

deadfermata
71
4 days ago

SHOTS FIRED!

Johnnyinthesun1
35
4 days ago

Can you get skin grafts for sick burns in space?

toddthefrog
8
4 days ago

I love that five hours after finishing you came back and responded with a hilarious burn to a fellow astronaut and then silently crept back into the night.

EgemenVonRichtofen
2
4 days ago

Also made my day

rez_045
3
4 days ago

Steps taken:

  1. Done
NotUniqueWorkAccount
27
4 days ago

I'm sure its obvious... but if you could elaborate on why cutting hair is stressful that would be out of this world!

Thanks

Itsalls0tiresome
45
4 days ago

Always stressful for a man to cut a woman's hair :)

KatieKerosine
24
4 days ago

Not to mention its zero gravity? So I would imagine all kinds of strands floating all over the place, hair sticking out, etc. Almost like as if it was static-y, sticking out all around itself. Now trying cutting that evenly :') sounds terrifying.

cat9tail
3
4 days ago

I recently saw Mr. Virts in person and he answered this question on stage: Samantha is incredibly famous in Italy & it would be akin to cutting the hair of one of the Kardashians with all of their fans watching. Apparently she liked how he cut it, so his reputation among her followers was spared.

3600MilesAway
2
4 days ago

I think that was exactly the problem, it was out of this world.

MetaRoke
253
4 days ago

What was your biggest "oh shit!" moment while in space?

Astro-Terry
552
4 days ago

There were a few- but a small piece of equipment came loose during my first launch and it banged against the back wall and made a loud noise- we were all 😳😳😳. Luckily it was OK! we found it floating a few minutes later once we were in space)

Scoundrelic
82
4 days ago
nasa
236
4 days ago

What inspired you to become an astronaut?

Astro-Terry
345
4 days ago

Apollo. The first book I ever read when I was in kindergarten was about Apollo.

theonly1theymake5
35
4 days ago

That's awesome and so inspiring!

deadfermata
3
4 days ago

Let me tell you. Reading does wonders.

I read the bible when I was a child and I became a god. AMA.

carbonatedfuck
9
4 days ago

Wait, what is this? A crossover episode?

PostPostModernism
7
4 days ago

What a softball question. I'm sure you asked him this in his interview :P

DEV0UR3R
236
4 days ago
  • What did you like the most about life on the ISS?

  • What did you dislike the most about life on the ISS?

Astro-Terry
434
4 days ago

Most- the view (floating was a close second)

Least- being gone from my family

j_B00G
3
4 days ago

How much contact were you able to maintain with them?

Skiie
228
4 days ago

Is there any competitive nature left vs the Russians?

Astro-Terry
496
4 days ago

Definitely - I watched the Hockey world championships with my Russian friends, that was a big friendly competition.

kevinleethree
103
4 days ago

Classy answer👍

epacseno
24
4 days ago

ah, the old sovjet switch-a-roo, I laik it

sorrikkai7
7
4 days ago

*laika

RoyceCoolidge
9
4 days ago

😭

dpjhyland
203
4 days ago

How did space affect your mental health?

Astro-Terry
548
4 days ago

Pretty badly, but then the voices in my head calmed me down. kidding

deadfermata
74
4 days ago

HAHA....Ha.........

Did anyone check if this is the real Terry Virts who returned to earth?!

I_love_napalm
31
4 days ago

Of course it is. Now, put on this hat.

ReasonablyBadass
5
4 days ago

It...it's green, has one eye and makes greedy sucking noises...

LuckyJamnik
2
4 days ago

Now spread your butt cheeks.

-Matt--
2
4 days ago

EAT THE CHEESEBURGER, ASTRO BOY

Trak5u17
2
4 days ago

And death shall have no dominion.

iAmOrangutan
203
4 days ago

What were your space walks like? Was it hard to get your bearings?

You've lived a dream life, sir! Thanks for your hard work and dedication to science!

Astro-Terry
506
4 days ago

They were 99% work and 1% OMG- this is incredible. When I had a chance to take a peek it was like I was seeing things that humans weren't meant to see

deadfermata
14
4 days ago

Is this why you had to get rid of the human Terry and assume his form, you reptilian! Also explains why you didnt answer the UFO question!

;)

MilitantPasta
171
4 days ago

Do you guys still get Omega Speedmasters while deployed?

Astro-Terry
213
4 days ago

Yes, we wore Omega Speedmaster x33 watches. They are awesome!

Carlotinous
5
4 days ago

Those things are awesome. I hope I can get one some day!

totally_not_a_zombie
4
4 days ago

What's special about them?

Carlotinous
8
4 days ago

They’re super expensive and look awesome. It makes my $500 Citizen watch look like shit

Edit: I think they’re over $4000

Limited-Liability
5
4 days ago

5900 if I was looking at the right watch

Lonhers
6
4 days ago

For everyday Joe that’s super expensive for a watch, but in terms of exclusive watches that’s actually really cheap.

PmMeWifeNudesUCuck
2
4 days ago

Is there a reason Spacemen get them? Is the difference in gravity an issue with the function of other watches?

Roldale24
7
4 days ago

Omega is just an insanely good timepiece. Reliable, accurate and extraordinarily well made. Every astronaut has worn some variation of them. They are more reliable and accurate (especially when they were all mechanical) than their cheaper competitors, without adding all the frills of their more expensive competitors. You pay a bit for the name. But they made that name for a reason.

almostamico
3
4 days ago

My man, asking the real questions here!

Dank_weedpotnugsauce
3
4 days ago

r/watches is leaking

Mrwalkinman
164
4 days ago

Do you believe there is a future in commercialized space travel in the next 100 years as far as being accessible to anyone other than the highest income earners? Do you think that any commercial/industrial opportunities aside from space tourism will arise within the next 100 years? Thank you very much for your time.

Astro-Terry
265
4 days ago

In the next few decades, it will be too expensive for ordinary humans to go to space. You need to go 25, 000 km an hour to stay in orbit, so the cost of fuel etc is prohibitive. It's going to be a long time until we can go as fast as we need to at affordable rates.

deadfermata
100
4 days ago

That's what you think. Wait until Uber introduces Uber Space.

LuckyJamnik
10
4 days ago

“Hey, it’s your Uber driver, come outside. I parked my car on the far side of the moon.”

Fuckrightoffbro
2
4 days ago

Yeah who needs to make a profit anyway when you just keep raising capital and hopes

bnfy
137
4 days ago

Would you like to go back to space?

Astro-Terry
185
4 days ago

Yes!

deadfermata
3
4 days ago

It's like an addiction!

Bluest_waters
132
4 days ago

I hear often about how viewing the earth from space changed the attitude/perspective some astronauts have towards people and politics and wars and such.

Did your time in space effect how you feel or think about people as a group? Or the earth itself?

Astro-Terry
240
4 days ago

I think I'm a lot less black-and-white than I used to be and I can see why we should be getting along and not having all this conflict we're having on this planet.

Bluest_waters
25
4 days ago

awesome, thanks for answering.

And yes I agree

pygmyshrew
6
4 days ago

I DISAGREE!

(Sorry, couldn't resist)

Nomen_Heroum
3
4 days ago
deadfermata
3
4 days ago

Yeah. Time to send ALL the politicians to space. If they make it back, they will have a new perspective. If not, oh well....

E__Rock
2
4 days ago

I think the trick there is to just send them into space. We have no intention of bringing them back :-P

JusticeBeaver13
2
4 days ago

Aw man, in that case, I'll pretend to be an ignorant politician just ao I can get a free ride to space!

radiglo
4
4 days ago

To expand on this experience, is there any kind of peace mission / NGO aimed at global unity formed by current and former international astro/cosmonauts? It would be such an inspiring endeavor!

LeSeyb
129
4 days ago

Have you ever had to handle conflicts on the ISS? How was it solved in such a confined and dangerous place with only a handful of people for months?

Astro-Terry
181
4 days ago

I was really lucky on expedition 43. We had a great crew and we're all still friends. But we're all still human and we were there for many months. But we never had anything major!

deadfermata
86
4 days ago

For the last time, use the damn vacuum when you pee. You've got droplets floating all over the bathroom!

brokenfragment
115
4 days ago

What did you do before being an Astronaut? Naval Pilot?

Astro-Terry
198
4 days ago

I was an Air Force test pilot.

chuck202
55
4 days ago

Airforce test pilot job requirements: have the largest testes on earth.

Orthas
9
4 days ago

And I mean, probably in space.

mattluttrell
6
4 days ago

Oh wow. I wonder if we crossed paths in Enid, Oklahoma...

Royale_guy
115
4 days ago

Did you get taller during the trip?

Astro-Terry
284
4 days ago

I gained about 5 cm while in space. I was finally six foot tall! Sadly, as soon as our feet hit the plant we go back to our original height :(

xerberos
83
4 days ago

😳 Was that your spine extending? Didn't it hurt once you got back on the ground?

Astro-Terry
202
4 days ago

Yep. All your joints open up. And yes, even though we train hard for a couple of hours a day, being back on earth is HEAVY for a while.

tizz66
144
4 days ago

There's that word again: "heavy." Why are things so heavy in the future? Is there a problem with the Earth's gravitational pull?

sykotyctendencies
8
4 days ago

GREAT SCOTT

Zacharide
8
4 days ago

I think it’s due to your body becoming accustomed to weightlessness and even if you do condition your body to sustain your bodyweight once you come back, it still will take a while for it to understand gravity again.

Skark8a
24
4 days ago
Zacharide
8
4 days ago

I must not understand the context then. Was this a joking question?

Skark8a
26
4 days ago

It's a reference to Back to the Future, where Marty keeps saying "heavy" and Doc Brown says that quote.

Skark8a
6
4 days ago

It's a reference to Back to the Future, where Marty keeps saying "heavy" and Doc Brown says that quote.

gungfoo123
6
4 days ago

Nobody got this one

OneShot2killz
2
4 days ago

On the first shot actually!

Shibbi_Shwing
40
4 days ago

Does that come with any unique sensations or feelings?

Astro-Terry
147
4 days ago

My back was in a lot of pain for the first week or two while I was in space. I could tap my feel on the floor, and I would have a feeling of electric shocks running up my legs and back. It was my nerves stretching out. It hurt and was really bizarre.

scoops22
29
4 days ago

Uhh that hurt just to read

jargoon
2
4 days ago

Sounds like your nerves might be too short for your body.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UMl0In9JXXA

The_Emerald_Archer_
6
4 days ago

Wow...both metric and freedom units in one sentence... interesting.

Caffeinatedprefect
110
4 days ago

Now that you've been to space -- do you think extraterrestrial life exists?

Astro-Terry
265
4 days ago

This requires a long answer- there are billions of planets out there, so you would think yes. But life is so complicated that I think it requires a creator- so maybe. At any rate, those planets are SOOOO far away that I doubt that we will ever meet them.

scoops22
54
4 days ago

Is there a protocol to follow if you were to encounter life somehow? Some sort of post detection policy specific to astronauts or would NASA just have you wing it?

Clemantthegymleader
37
4 days ago

Didn't answer the two questions about extraterrestrial encounters... hmmm 👽

RobertAPetersen
7
4 days ago

I mean, evolution explains the rise of complex life exceedingly well these days, if not necessarily the origin of life (yet), but that initial life would have been extremely basic, not complex.

Not disparaging belief, but the idea that current life is so complex it requires a creator for that reason is a pretty substantially debunked idea. Gradual changes, especially given billions of years accounts for it without requiring any creator god(s).

You can always believe some god(s) somewhere made our universe with the right conditions specifically so life could arise naturally though, but at that point you wouldn’t be able to distinguish between a naturally occurring universe and one which was made by a creator to exactly resemble one, but that’s where faith can step in if one chooses.

kyleisthestig
12
4 days ago

I can kind of understand a God (if one exist) could spark the beginnings of life on a planet. A lot had to happen perfectly to let life happen on earth. That said, i can believe that there are likely moons in the universe that have life on them. I don't think we're alone.

I can definitely get behind the idea of earth being a little side project from God. Im willing to bet that there's life on other planets that don't follow our traditional rules of life on this planet

typicaljuan
3
4 days ago

I remember back when I was in catholic school a teacher even told me that the "Seven days" God took to create earth could have been all those years of evolution, a priest also said everything in the bible doesn't have to be taken literally and it's all up for interpretation.

I'm sure there's plenty of life out there. It's also possible that these organisms have a different type of "goldilocks" planet and they'd die if they came to our "perfect" earth. Space is a mystery and nothing is concrete.

kyleisthestig
2
4 days ago

Sure!

The thing that kind of kept me out of religion is kind of what is weird to me about the big bang.

What was before God? What made God? What was before the big bang? Just a bunch of heat n stuff flying around?

Nomen_Heroum
14
4 days ago

Christian physicist here, maybe I can offer some perspective. I think that when you think about "before the big bang", you have to keep in mind that time is just one of the 4+ dimensions we exist in. It is a property of the universe, not something that transcends it. Talking about a time before the universe is like talking about a place outside the universe, but in the same three spatial dimensions.

In my view, the same way that God isn't confined to physical space since he created it, he is also not confined to time as just another dimension. To me, this is exactly what we mean implicitly when we say God is eternal.

You might even say the same about logic and, by extension, mathematics. I'm relatively agnostic as far as the transcendence of those goes, but there's a reasonable argument to be made that mathematics is intrinsically tied to the structure of our universe itself. The same goes for our thoughts and understanding, so—although admittedly this sounds like a bit of a cop-out—it doesn't surprise me personally that we are unable to fully grasp what happens "outside the physical world" or "before the Big Bang".

As for why religion is a thing or why I'm a Christian when I just said we can't really understand anything about what's beyond the physical world, that's a little beyond the scope of this comment (and probably this AMA!), but I'd be happy to elaborate if it interests you at all.

kyleisthestig
3
4 days ago

It actually really interest me a lot.

I decided to not believe in God at a really young age. Like 4 or 5. I remember this exchange vividly.

Me: Who was Jesus's dad?

Pastor: Well God of course.

Me: Then who was God's dad?

Pastor: God didn't have a dad. He created himself.

Me: How did he create himself if he wasn't there before?

Pastor: You just have to have faith in some things.

After this exchange, I kind of lost interest in religion. I got kind of "shamed" in my family for a while. My mom thinks I'm going to hell, my grandma hopes that God saves my mind from the devils grasp. This happened in kind of a dark time in my life to boot. My dad doesn't really care about my religious beliefs and he was the one that allowed me to stop going to church. He's kind of in the same boat as me, but he let me find my beliefs by myself and I really appreciate that.

I'd love to believe in a god. I want to believe in heaven. I want to think that my family that has passed on is up there somewhere waiting for me. I want to believe that when I die, I'm not just done...

But I cant. Logically I can't see how God is real. If God was real and is the image of perfection, why has he done so many terrible things or let so many terrible things happen? Is the "devil" stronger than him and that's what lets so much bad things happen?

Every time I think about god and all that jazz it makes me think that earth is just kind of a wasted step. Where does the soul get created if not heaven or hell? Don't you just go back to that same place after?

I like the idea of hell being Earth and we're just here destined to re-incarnate until we learn to love each other, but I don't see that being true, nor being preached ever.

Sorry for the really long response, but this is something that i battle with on a regular basis.

Nomen_Heroum
3
4 days ago

Thanks for the heartfelt response, there's a lot to unpack there. I don't claim to know the complete truth, but the least I can do is offer my own perspective. Just not before I get some sleep, it's way past bedtime here!

I think I'll drop you a DM tomorrow, lest this thread goes too far off-topic and spins into religious debate.

shelledpanda
3
4 days ago

I feel like there is a question in all of this, and the question is akin to “what is the universe and why the heck does it exist?”

There isn’t an answer for you. We live in a universe that has no plausible explanation. For all we experience, for all of our knowledge and sentience, supposed ‘self-awareness’, we have no possible way to understand the what or why of it all.

The question commonly brought up in this thread: ‘what came before the Big Bang or before the original Creator’ is impossible to answer because it assumes a beginning. There cannot have possibly been a beginning because before that there would be nothing, and nothing does not make something, i.e. the Big Bang. Therefore our understanding of the laws of the universe are just totally boned to hell in a way that defies description because the tools we have to understand it are the dead wrong tools.

What I mean is this; our way of measuring everything is relative, and because everything in our existence has a beginning and an end, we can’t possibly understand something that doesn’t. It’s like me trying to explain to you what the sense of smell or touch or sight is without you having ever experienced it. You have no frame of reference for understanding it because nothing else is remotely like it. I can’t explain the fourth dimension to something that doesn’t experience time. Life is weird, and then we die. All of our guesses are as good as anyone’s in my opinion

Jaczary
2
4 days ago

This is a great question. I'd like to offer my view based on many years of studying God, faith and how it might all fit. Firstly the pastor didn't do you any favours. That wasn't the best way to handle this sort of question. Here's how I would have tried to help. Science tells us the universe began about 13-14 billion years ago. So there had to be a beginning point and then the question is what was before that beginning - that "Big Bang?"

The only answer can be a designer, architect, God ... however you wish to explain this entity. What begins to exist has a cause, the universe began to exist around 13 billion years ago, therefore the universe has a cause.

With that in mind - who or what is the cause..? It has to be a mind of some sort that is so beyond our thinking that we cannot at this point in our evolution explain this being. Also that cause, God or designer or architect must be outside of time and space otherwise you get the problem of "well who created God..."

So time had to start too - and for that to all happen there must be something/someone who has the power and desire to do this. Random chance cannot create - random chance is not a cause, not an entity and has now power.

So someone or something created all life - alien, human ... whatever we find had a beginning.

Want to discuss more - just message me - I'm happy to talk about it as it's a fascinating topic and way too big for a short post on Reddit.

:)

xenomorph856
2
4 days ago

I, for one, do not welcome the idea of a Steve Buscemi overlord.

amcdon
3
4 days ago

Not to mention the fact that a creator just pushes back the issue one step. Maybe we have a creator, but who created it? And who created the creator's creator. And so on.

budsonguy
104
4 days ago

Was there ever a time when you were in space, that you regretted being there?

Astro-Terry
212
4 days ago

Never. I knew I'd be back to earth in a short time and I'd have the rest of my life down here, so I tried to enjoy it

bhuddimaan
2
4 days ago

That was a test. It was your wife asking. You failed.

Astro-Terry
300
4 days ago

Not very often, because 99% of the time I was extremely busy. But when I did it was the most beautiful thing I've ever seen. It was like I was seeing God's view of creation

Waphex
43
4 days ago

Reading this made me dream away for a near minute

stangwill
3
4 days ago

3 spacewalks sounds like a small number to me? Was it your position, set of skills or a number of different factors that may explain this. Could you maybe expand a little on the spacewalks on how or why you would have done more/less or other factors that may have contributed to this?

Unlimited_Porgs
13
4 days ago

Spacewalks are few and far between due to the expensive nature of them. NASA, ESA, and Roscosmos try to do them as rarely as is nessecary.

Ps. Leave a comment on the post itself so he will actually see them

Edit: I forgot JAXA and the CSA

Actuality546
3
4 days ago

Wow, thank you for taking the time to reply! I’m glad you snuck out a look at the Earth a few times. Your description makes it sound absolutely breathtaking.

TearsDontFall
104
4 days ago

Now that you can speak freely, tell us the truth...

Do you really not have astronaut ice cream?!?!

Astro-Terry
189
4 days ago

No I had Ben & Jerry's and Klondike. That astronaut ice cream was a marketing ploy.

tierneyb
63
4 days ago

8-year-old me is so pissed off by this. I believed those bastards.

RedditorSince1984
14
4 days ago

Oof. All those trips to the science museum, were for nothing.

vbfronkis
8
4 days ago

IT'S STILL DELICIOUS!

packpeach
9
4 days ago

I guess going to space is what you would do for a Klondike bar.

_cameron121_
2
4 days ago

That freeze dried ice cream at KSC is soo good

AquaticSnail
102
4 days ago

In your opinion, what was the most important experiment you conducted, and why was it performed in space?

Astro-Terry
146
4 days ago

I did some experiments for a major drug company that were focused on bone and muscle health. We had to do them in space because weightlessness intensified problems with our bones and muscles.

Dvanpat
99
4 days ago

What is the most awe-inspiring experience you had while aboard the ISS or during your time in space in general?

Astro-Terry
297
4 days ago

One moment on a spacework, I got to stop my work and I turned around and got to watch the sun rise. It was the most awe-inspiring moment I've ever experienced.

RedRabbit18
96
4 days ago

How did it feel like being in a rocket going so fast and so high? Also, did you feel the "rollercoaster drop feeling" when you went up to space, and went down to earth?

Astro-Terry
202
4 days ago

A drop makes you feel weightless, on a roller coaster it only lasts for 20 seconds and in space, it lasted for 2 months.

Rydersilver
55
4 days ago

I’m scared

1075701
2
4 days ago

That sounds uncomfortable

FaithfulNihilist
91
4 days ago

- Did being in space change your perspective on the human condition (if so, how)?

- How long did it take for the view from orbit to stop impressing you (if ever)?

- If you could give one piece of advice to an astronaut going up for the first time, what would it be?

- What experiment(s) that you conducted in space stands out to you as most interesting?

- What do you think about the shift of space travel technology from government agencies to commercial companies?

Astro-Terry
164
4 days ago

It did. I realized that we're all primates on this spaceship together and we need to focus on working together and less on dividing ourselves.

- Never.

- Have a good idea of the pictures you want to take, because the time will fly by faster than you think. Even if you're there for six months

- Capillary Flow Experiment!

- I think it's a great thing and commercial companies are much better at being innovative and making things happen. The government has the primary job of keeping itself employed and not losing jobs or budget, but private companies have to make things happen or they go out of business.

FaithfulNihilist
38
4 days ago

Thanks for the reply! For others reading this, here's a link to the Capillary Flow Experiment description.

MrMoffett
5
4 days ago

Fitting username, and thanks! Very interesting!

notadoctor123
3
4 days ago

What kinds of pictures can you take on the ISS that wouldn't be obvious, like out the viewing window?

LegoSkywalker
70
4 days ago

I've heard from Russian cosmonauts (on the Mir), that Space smells like burning metal and that it is VERY loud. Is the ISS loud?

Also, who's your favorite fictional space related character?

Astro-Terry
166
4 days ago

It depends on the module. They've improved the fans so some of the Russian modules used to be very loud, but now they can be quieter than the American ones. but it depends on the location -- in some areas it can be pretty loud, and in others, like our sleep stations, it's pretty quiet.

Jar Jar Binks Luke Skywalker!

deadfermata
16
4 days ago

Jar Jar Binks

Almost had to lock this thread.

ifeeltherain
67
4 days ago

What was your biggest roadblock to becoming an astronaut, and how did you overcome it?

Astro-Terry
157
4 days ago

being able to be brave enough to actually apply. Too many people are too shy or afraid of failure. If there's something you want to do you just have to go for it.

JUNGLEJlM
49
4 days ago

u/CrashTheMexican wants to be an Astronaut- he's asking for advice further up the thread- you should drop in and help a buddy out.

JoshuaFnBoyer
7
4 days ago

I totally agree, u/Astro-Terry, give this man some tips! :)

JUNGLEJlM
11
4 days ago

He did! I think we got his attention where it needed to be!

MR_JACK_DANIELS
2
4 days ago

Thank you. I needed to hear someone say this today.

SneakyDonut23
63
4 days ago

Hey Col. Virts!

I am a college student studying Aerospace Engineering with dreams of being an astronaut. What would you suggest as some important things to get good at besides school? For example, I know you had to train scuba diving. Do you think knowing this skill before beginning would have been advantageous for you? Thanks!

TheRealSir_Castic
55
4 days ago

You did the right thing by asking, even though you didn't get a reply. Always go for what you want. This is what you need to do. Apply.

SneakyDonut23
27
4 days ago

Thanks! Crazy how encouragement from a stranger can mean a lot

Rydersilver
3
4 days ago

You go you!

DamienVonDoom
3
4 days ago

We all believe in you, bud!

CndSpaceCadet
7
4 days ago

With the rise in commercial space industry, we’re bound to see a demand for commercial astronauts... like these guys for example.

Keep pushing for your dreams because the place you are meant to be might not even exist yet, but you’ll be ready for it when it comes.

fskoti
2
4 days ago

Search by Q&A, someone asked a very similar question and was answered. Dream big!

liquidwaterr
2
4 days ago

Have goals that you are able to get to quickly and goals that take time. College takes time and is a mental toll. But with the right motivation you will succeed. Your goals will be reached and you can finally cross them off of your checklist. This in turn creates opportunities for you to make new goals. Goals that are now possible because you have arrived at this level. It will be hard and many times you will think about quitting, but focus on the bright future that awaits you, and that will power you to push forward. Imagine about what you will say to yourself once you have completed that difficult task. You will be thankful you didn't quit because you won't be focusing on the difficult road as much as the present success.

Xerathia
2
4 days ago

I suggest reading Chris Hadfield's book. It's a great read about his journey and how he prepared himself and got into the best position possible to reach his dream of becoming an astronaut. That man is incredibly wise and inspiring!

NuclearWarhead
57
4 days ago

How do you perform dentistry (in space) while not being a dentist? Did you train for that particular assignment? Have you replaced your own fillings since then?

Astro-Terry
109
4 days ago

Absolutely at the UT dental school in Houston. We learned to do the basics and I actually did the first ever filling replacement in space- it was fun!

tRussianPlayer
5
4 days ago

Really? You kidding ?!

AirFox_Gov
2
4 days ago

And now we travel back to the experiment you find most interesting, capillary that is ;) Nice job Terry, that’s a necessity most wouldn’t even think of! Not sure how you actually did it, but I believe that this is one of the reasons sustained human space travel is a concern/focus with regards to experimentation of highG practices in a microG environment! Cool as heck!

rchaserr
50
4 days ago

What was the thing that you thought when you looked at earth from space for the first time?

Astro-Terry
167
4 days ago

About 15 minutes after launch I flew into my first sunrise- and I had the distinct thought "I've never seen that shade of blue before"- it was the most intense bluish color

Waphex
46
4 days ago

Reading your responses here about the astonishing view makes me long for a similar experience

BenBishopsButt
50
4 days ago

Did anything happen while you were in space that you weren't expecting/hadn't prepared for?

Astro-Terry
157
4 days ago

Seeing the planet. I thought I was prepared for everything, but you can't prepare for the emotional impact of seeing your planet down there and realizing you aren't on it. Plus it's just such a beautiful planet.

snowy_87
13
4 days ago

It sounds like the anxious feeling leaving a hotel room for the last time and having that nagging feeling you left something behind.

FurryPornAccount
45
4 days ago

Which would you say is worse, leaving earth, or coming to earth?

Astro-Terry
78
4 days ago

Leaving Earth is loud, exciting, thrilling and dynamic, unlike, returning to Earth which requires more time because gravity is so disorientating.

HiebUndStichfest
5
4 days ago

You'd think that gravity is what gives an anchorpoint for orientation and that zero-g is what causes disorientation. It's funny to hear that it impacts you completely the other way round upon returnal.

claymachine
43
4 days ago

how quiet space is? are you feeling lonely there?

Astro-Terry
78
4 days ago

Inside the space station there's fans running constantly, and that's what you hear. Outside, of course there's no sound, but you do hear the sound of the fan running inside the space suit

mickeymouse4348
36
4 days ago

So space sounds like fans?

7_sided_triangle
8
4 days ago

So space sounds like fans?

And they're all cheering for you, bud.

You can do this.

CardboardSoyuz
43
4 days ago

When people are making food aboard the space station and it gets away from them and ends up sticking to a surface and making a mess, is there a verb you guys have coined for that occurrence? e.g., "Oh, man, Terry went and [BLANKED] his peanut butter against the bulkhead again."

yummy_yummy9
42
4 days ago

Colonel,

I’m a senior in college and was selected for naval aviation last semester. I am still holding onto the dream of being an astronaut one day... any advice? Test pilot school necessary? Thank you, sir!

Astro-Terry
51
4 days ago

Congrats! Not necessary but it is a HUGE help

MrMoffett
2
4 days ago

I.e. do it

wonderin17
39
4 days ago

what is it like to get back to your casual meals on Earth? Was it easy to adapt?

Astro-Terry
64
4 days ago

It was like a light switch, I went from space to earth immediately. Which surprised me – I thought it would be harder, but it wasn't.

IbanezHand
36
4 days ago

Would You Rather Fight a Horse-Sized Duck in space or a Hundred Duck-Sized Horses in space?

Astro-Terry
67
4 days ago

As long as it had its wings tied back, I'd take the horse-sized duck.

IbanezHand
70
4 days ago

The wings are part of the package, Terry. Adapt and overcome, you were picked for space travel for a reason!

Astro-Terry
71
4 days ago

Then I need my lightsaber if I'm gonna fight that thing!

xxbearillaxx
44
4 days ago

Yer a wizard, Terry.

Hellcowz
33
4 days ago

Do you ever see any debris from previous missions floating around orbit? I always heard there is a belt of essentially garbage in orbit. That true?

Astro-Terry
63
4 days ago

you could always see a cloud of debris around the shuttle, dust or frozen water or something from the payload bay, all small and harmless. But you can't see debris flying around from other orbits because it is moving at miles per second

Hellcowz
7
4 days ago

Thanks! Facinating!

Krokan62
10
4 days ago

More like terrifying.

NinjaGrimlock
4
4 days ago

I can't imagine miles per flipping second

JusticeBeaver13
3
4 days ago

I'm with you on that. That'a why space is so difficult for a lot of us to conceptualize, we just can't picture what 93 million miles looks like, or miles per second (bullets would be the closest we could visualize and make some sense of).

Generic_Reddit-Guy
33
4 days ago

What was it like going back to gravity on earth?

Astro-Terry
68
4 days ago

HEAVY! I felt like a super hero who was being pulled down to earth with a big magnetic ray

phalseid
30
4 days ago

What personal item did you want to bring with you, but you couldn't because it wouldn't fit under your seat?

Astro-Terry
52
4 days ago

my golf clubs

phalseid
3
4 days ago

ha! great answer!

Mintx1
30
4 days ago

How do you beat off in space?

internetgog
15
4 days ago

Asking the real question.

S_S_crabs
10
4 days ago

A friend of mine actually got the chance to ask andré kuipers(an iss astronaut like 6 years ago) if he himself jacked of in space. His answer was he wouldnt be surprised if people did. So i assume they themselves make sure no dirty stuff gets anywhere but a bag or paper.

Kai_real
2
4 days ago

U asking the real questions here

2cool4life
27
4 days ago

Have you ever seen a UFO?

Astro-Terry
54
4 days ago

nope

deadfermata
13
4 days ago

denial!

confirmed reptilian.

qdobaisbetter
28
4 days ago

Do they still have to quarantine you all when you get back to Earth? If so, how long and for what?

Astro-Terry
46
4 days ago

Not anymore, the Apollo guys had to be in quarantine, but now we just do quarantine before launch to make sure we don't bring germs with us. When we get back to earth they give us a room in "crew quarters" that gives us some personal space, but it's not a proper quarantine

DiceMaster
23
4 days ago

Besides friends and family, what did you miss most about Earth when you were in space?

Astro-Terry
51
4 days ago

Pizza!!

DiceMaster
19
4 days ago

We are of one mind, my spacefaring friend

ClassyWinner12
21
4 days ago

What watch were you wearing during your trip to the stars???

Astro-Terry
38
4 days ago

I had my Omega X33, it's a great watch. It had everything I needed.

ClassyWinner12
5
4 days ago

Thats such a great watch. Was it given to you by Nasa? Or was it from you own collection?

monkcm365
23
4 days ago

How do you feel seeing the flat earth movement? Do you feel angry knowing people hold this view or what emotion jumps out at you knowing people really believe we live on a flat planet?

JusticeBeaver13
2
4 days ago

I was waiting (and hoping) someone would ask this question and I was interested to see his response, if any. My thought on it is that a good strategy is to not even give them the time of day with a thoughtful response. It's such a ludicrous claim that any response to it would just give 'them' fuel to feed their conspiracy, they obviously hold a very extremist ideologies that there wouldn't be anything that a professional could say to them to invoke any thought of changing their mind. I know this isn't quite the question you asked but that's my thought on 'flat-earthers' asking questions -they're not asking to learn, rather to fuel the conspiracy.

That is only my opinion though, I'm open to being wrong about having that approach, but their stance is so absurd that there's no changing their mind. I'll admit though, it is scary on how fast the movement is growing and potentially spreading to the youth and really causing a movement that is a major step backwards.

resonantSoul
18
4 days ago

How much Russian did you know before you went up? How much did you pick up while you were there?

Astro-Terry
54
4 days ago

До полета я знал русский немного. А на станции мы вместе общались, смотрели кино и я узнал много нового! I guess I have to translate too) My russian was okay when I launched. And on ISS we spend time together with our Russian crewmates, enjoyed our meals and watched movies together and I think my Russian got better!

Magnus_Helgisson
5
4 days ago

А как с произношением? Do you speak Russian with American accent? I was always wondering about how hard is it for an American to gain a good Russian pronunciation, because I speak Russian and it's really hard for me to speak English without an accent.

resonantSoul
5
4 days ago

For what it's worth, I've got a Ukrainian Co-worker that says my pronunciation is good, but I sound like a text book.

Magnus_Helgisson
4
4 days ago

Oh, hi, lol. Didn't recognize you, we've been chatting about Russian a while ago. Reddit is small 😆

resonantSoul
4
4 days ago

Ha! So we were. I hope you're getting more comfortable with your pronunciation

Magnus_Helgisson
5
4 days ago

I believe it's getting better, still, there are the issues related to vocals - in slavic languages the sound is formed in a different way than in English and you have to get used to it to be comfortable to quickly say something like "rules with threats" (I mean the alternation between "th" and "s"), 'cause almost every Russian speaker I know including me falls into pronouncing "wis sreats" sooner or later :)

resonantSoul
2
4 days ago

If you ever want to connect on something, I'd be happy to lend a hand as much as I can.

I know exactly what you mean though. I found myself trying to figure out how to explain how one makes a "th" sound one day. I'm sure my д and т could use some work, especially at the end of words. And that's not even getting into the extra complexity of ь.

Still, I'll worry more about my pronunciation after I've got a better understanding of the way words work and change.

Magnus_Helgisson
4
4 days ago

Yeah, there are also German-originated words that end with "дт", must be even harder to understand how is their pronunciation different than "т".

Regarding "ь" - think about Nute Gunray from Star Wars prequels, his speech has that similarly sounding accents.

Yeah, thanks for offer, you can still ask me questions as well.

spookyloops
3
4 days ago

It’s pretty difficult. I’m relatively good with accents and still have constant trouble with ы and properly pronouncing ь. Especially with infinitives, I always end up saying something like говоритс rather than говорить (Source: I’m American and have been learning Russian for years!)

resonantSoul
2
4 days ago

As someone still trying to learn, I appreciate the information and the translation )

Спасибо!

bighero31
17
4 days ago

Did your brain ever do that falling thing when you were trying to sleep?

Astro-Terry
29
4 days ago

whenever I closed my eyes I would feel like I was pitching forward and rolling left, it was very bizarre, but I felt that for months. I would feel that for 10-20 seconds and then it would end

catalyst518
15
4 days ago

What is your favorite picture you took from space and what is your favorite picture you've taken on Earth?

Astro-Terry
50
4 days ago

So hard to say cause I took so many (over 300k!). The last picture I took from space was pretty awesome though, it's a sun over the earth, wide angle shot, with "starburst" effect (f/22 aperture). I loved that one. And on earth- soooo many. I took some cool pics of the Sheikh Zayid Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi and also in Antarctica and also of the Eclipse last year that were pretty cool.

QuantumHope
21
4 days ago

Aaand where are these photos? :) Does the general Internet populace get to see any?

thenebular
30
4 days ago

They need to airbrush out the UFOs first.

QuantumHope
2
4 days ago

:P

CodyTheKit
14
4 days ago

Being in space were you anxious about any medical issues? Obviously you cannot go to a hospital in space, so I'd imagine if I randomly had pain anywhere my anxiety would be through the roof.

Astro-Terry
42
4 days ago

There are a lot of medical issues you deal with- back pain from stretching out, skin rashes, eyesight changes, dizziness. The most concerning one is radiation and cancer- there's nothing that's really been done about this, and it's a risk for long term astronaut spaceflight

thereisnocenter
14
4 days ago

Thoughts on SLS and the latest plans for moon landings?

Astro-Terry
28
4 days ago

I'm hopeful we can make it happen but a lot of things have to go right in order to do this within 5 years. SLS has been in development since 2005 and it isn't that close to flying yet. I think building the gateway will just slow us down.

123ilovetrees
10
4 days ago

Weird question, but do you think aliens are real?

therealpantsgnome
3
4 days ago

I too wish he answered this :’(

trelene
7
4 days ago

I don't know how to link individual comments, but he answered a similar question about "extraterrestrial life" so you can search for it.

therealpantsgnome
2
4 days ago

I will check Thanks 🙏🏼

MrMoffett
2
4 days ago

He did above

canibeadogpls
10
4 days ago

How did u survive without pizza?

Astro-Terry
32
4 days ago

I barely did

isybitsy
10
4 days ago

What do you miss the most about being in space?

Astro-Terry
21
4 days ago

floating, and the view

indiannepster
11
4 days ago

How are birthdays celebrated in space?

Astro-Terry
28
4 days ago

We celebrated most of our BDs. For Samantha's we had a hat for her as well as some fake "candles" on a NASA Lemon Cake that was pulled out of a vacuum sealed green bag. It was fun though. We also gave each other gifts, chocolates or other food they liked

SilviaS31
9
4 days ago

Do you still send selfies with Italian fans to Samantha? Are you still in touch with her and your other crewmembers?

(Thanks again for signing my copy of view from above at the science museum in London 2 years ago in front of the Apollo capsule)

ThatsSuperDumb
8
4 days ago

Do you think we're alone as intelligent life in the universe?

Astro-Terry
22
4 days ago

I'm not sure- there are so many planets you'd think there are others out there, but life is so complex I believe it needs a creator

Cat_City_Bitch
6
4 days ago

What is the anxiety level like in the arc of pre-flight, time in space, and return? Were there moments that you were surprised by feeling fear when you didn't expect, or feeling calm about things you expected to be anxious about?

Astro-Terry
26
4 days ago

I was actually surprised how un-stressed I was, I fell asleep on the launchpad waiting for my STS_130 launch But once the engines lit it was of course all business. I really think the two "scariest" moments I face were cutting my female crew mate's hair (no kidding) and robotically moving Node 3 out of Endeavour's payload bay, it had "settled" a few inches from the wall and I had to be really careful

CrazyDuck123
10
4 days ago

Hello Terry! How do the toilets work in space?

Astro-Terry
28
4 days ago

Very carefully. The basic idea is it uses airflow to make things move in the right direction. There's a hose for number 1 and a can for number 2, but both use airflow.

thenebular
34
4 days ago

So the toilets on the ISS suck.

deadfermata
10
4 days ago

/slow clap/

Get this guy a seat on the next flight out of here....

CrazyDuck123
3
4 days ago

Thanks!

erhymeswithz
6
4 days ago

If you could suggest one thing for an aspiring astronaut, what would it be and, more importantly, why?

Astro-Terry
19
4 days ago

Do what you love and do it well- that's most important.

erhymeswithz
3
4 days ago

Cmdr. Virts - thank you so much for your reply. You are an inspiration to me and so many others.

yomeettintin
6
4 days ago

Have you always been a photographer? And if so, who would you say are your favorite photographers.

Astro-Terry
24
4 days ago

Yes- I'm the kind of dad whose kids say "DAD STOP TAKING PICTURES" I've had a camera since I was in elementary school, I love it. Check out www.terryvirts.com for some of my favorites

TheWalkingSalmon
4
4 days ago

Do you think it's possible yet to establish a permanent lunar base? Also, do you think we're more likely to go back to the moon before sending someone to go to Mars?

Astro-Terry
19
4 days ago

It is possible, for sure, and I think it's mandatory before we go to mars

Hacky03
8
4 days ago

How did you spend your free time while in space?

Astro-Terry
10
4 days ago

Taking pictures! Whenever I had a chance.

thewhitewolf4488
6
4 days ago

Whats the best song about space?

Astro-Terry
16
4 days ago

The new movie, Apollo 11, soundtrack!

Resource1138
4
4 days ago

You retired? Why?

Astro-Terry
24
4 days ago

I had been at NASA for 16 years and had done everything there was to do, I wanted to move out on the next phase of my career while I was still young and had some energy. Plus I love being an "entrepreneur," I had been in a bureaucracy for 30 years and was ready for something new

deadfermata
5
4 days ago

To survive federal government bureaucracy and be an astronaut and test pilot. You are the real hero.

creatingKing113
6
4 days ago

Hello. Would you say space travel is still dangerous? In particular, how have things changed since the beginning of the space program, and what has to be done to make space travel safe enough for the common person to travel to space? Thank you.

[deleted]
6
4 days ago

[deleted]

Astro-Terry
23
4 days ago

It was Capillary Flow Experiment (CFE). Controlling the flow of fluids is difficult in microgravity, which hampers design of systems such as liquid propellants, thermal control. It's a suite of fluid physics experiments that investigate capillary flows and flows of fluids in containers with complex geometries. Results will improve current computer models that are used by designers of low gravity fluid systems and may improve fluid transfer systems on future spacecraft.

dacianmuresan
6
4 days ago

what would be the first steps we will need to take to bring the collaboration between countries from space to earth?

Astro-Terry
8
4 days ago

We've already been collaborating since Apollo-Soyuz in 1975, and in my mind the international cooperation aspect of spaceflight is the most important part of it

ZhiZhoka
4
4 days ago

could you smell things while not wearing your suit in the ISS? Also, what did you eat in space normally? Do you have a choice?

Castlezion
4
4 days ago

When you get back to earth, do you still experience the sensation of floating? Like when you're sleeping and such?

zeddotes
3
4 days ago

What’s the scariest feeling, in space, you’ve had?

najing_ftw
5
4 days ago

What was the most surprising thing to you about being in orbit?

Astro-Terry
21
4 days ago

Learning to move around was interesting- especially because you move with your hands and carry thing with your feet. But humans adapt so quickly, it's an amazing and quick learning process

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4
4 days ago

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Astro-Terry
12
4 days ago

Hey everyone! I'm getting read to start our AMA at 10:15 PDT. Get read for blast off!

rednirgskizzif
3
4 days ago

What was the process of getting selected as an astronaut like? What was your experience/qualifications that enabled you to be selected?

Psychodelonaut
3
4 days ago

Hi Terry thanks for doing this.

Do you think there'll be a need/demand for more scientist astronauts? In the last candidate selection there were only two out of twelve selected, a microbiologist and a geologist. I'm starting a PhD in development soon and one of my dreams is to study development in space.

DocumentaryAndChill
3
4 days ago

What kind of experiments were you working on out there?

Astro-Terry
12
4 days ago

I had 250 during my 200 day mission. Everything from medical to biology to material science to physics, engineering, psychology, etc. The human medicine ones were really important to me.

Sir_Lazz
3
4 days ago

Hello ! I've always wondered: how does it feel like to finally being able to breathe all sorts of diffenrnt odors, after being trapped in a tin can for 6 month ? I guess that there is not a lot of scents in the recicled air of the ISS...

Astro-Terry
11
4 days ago

Actually there isn't really an odor on the ISS, it's pretty sterile and clean

HippoKingOfOld
2
4 days ago

Do you feel more could be done to address the CO2 levels on board the ISS?

Alpha_Trekkie
2
4 days ago

while in space was it difficult to figure out how to sleep in micro gravity? and what was the most notable experiment you helped preform on the ISS?

FlimFlamHamSlam
2
4 days ago

What is one of your biggest goals for space exploration, as a whole, in the next 100 years?

cmsquid
2
4 days ago

What is your professional opinion on the likelihood of long term space occupation (in the future) for the common person, given your experience doing it? Can it be sustainable on a larger scale?

Bigbananajoe
2
4 days ago

Hi, Terry!

What is it that made you want to retire/no longer be an active astronaut? Was it your choice?

floofyyy
2
4 days ago

How did you readjust to the workforce when you got back from space? Like, how do you go from doing spacewalks to having to work for The Man?

Academic0625
2
4 days ago

Hi Terry!

Training to be an astronaut is about a two year journey! Were there any points that pushed you to your limits? How did you work through it?

theFapAb
2
4 days ago

What was your favorite thing to look at in space?

Astro-Terry
9
4 days ago

Our planet!

RememberThe98Season
2
4 days ago

As someone who has spent so much time in space, can you please comment on 2 things. Did you ever see anything you would qualify as a piloted UFO? Do you personally believe that we have been visited by extraterrestrials? Many former astronauts have said they've seen strange objects in space and so I am curious if you've had similar experiences and what you're ruminations on the subject are. Thanks!

__nightshaded__
2
4 days ago

Is it true that space has a distinct smell?

Brg_K
2
4 days ago

While being in space, what did you miss the most about the Earth?

paoerfuuul
2
4 days ago

This may sound gross, but I’m really curious. How do you poop in space? Doesn’t it float the moment you release it?

SuperMajesticMan
2
4 days ago

Their toilets have little vacuums that help to suck it down.

iampanchovilla
2
4 days ago

UFOs did you see any?

CloverLeafKeef
2
4 days ago

Real talk. Would they actually allow someone to smoke weed on the ISS?

Dbbbfff
2
4 days ago

If there is life on other planets, how similar to our life do you think it would be?

BeyondLost1
2
4 days ago

Hi Col. Virts, thanks for doing this AMA. Would you by any chance know whether civilian pilots can be selected for NASA research pilot positions? I am pursuing a private pilot certification, and a pilot position at NASA seems pretty interesting. Another question - What kind of activities/skills would you recommend that aspiring Astronauts have in order to make them stand out? Thanks =)

CarlosVlzqz
2
4 days ago

Hey Terry! I saw you last week at your conference in Tampico but as staff member I wasn't allowed to ask you anything so I think this is the perfect occasion to ask you, what kind of experiments did you perform at ISS, and how have said experiments helped here on Earth?

FRIENDLY_CANADIAN
2
4 days ago

Hi! I was wondering if you can tell me what kind of photography challenges you may have encountered when taking pictures in space? What kind of settings would a typical shot take?

I keep wondering if space photography would be easier or harder than on Earth lol...On Earth the conditions change constantly with the spinning globe, but in Space, I imagine it's either very dark (when behind the planet), or very light...does the Sun's light change dramatically in space? I envision it as very constant, although possibly challenging to photograph given it would overexpose as it does on Earth during daytime?

philmajohnson
2
4 days ago

Does anyone masturbate In space?

TheKentuckyRifleman
2
4 days ago

You ever secretly laugh at flat-earthers?

muklan
2
4 days ago

Can I ask about your microgravity dental adventure?

Are you a trained dentist? Was it planned to do while you guys were up there? Whats the anaesthetic situation like? How trippy would being on pain medication in space even BE?!

BrianBadolato
2
4 days ago

Where you surprised that the world was flat, or had they already tell you?

sagek123
2
4 days ago

I'm trying to join the Air Force as a pilot and then make my way up to be an astronaut. Any pointers?

trafficbroker
2
4 days ago

So... You confirm the earth is flat, right?

poopsicle88
2
4 days ago

Was it difficult masturbating in space?