- Education and Science»
- Astronomy & Space Exploration
Sex In Space - Shuttle Sex Possible?
Space flights are nothing extraordinary anymore, with the Moon and Mars soon becoming the first planets to be colonized by mankind. The time when man is restricted to the confines of Earth will soon be over depending on several things--the ability to generate healthy offspring and the inability to develop a successful procreation program--with both restricting and influencing the first space exploration projects in the near future.
Space/earth research into Sex!
So... Sex in Space? NASA sex study? Well, they earlier had developed such a program referred to as NASA "Sex in Space" by astronauts and Mission Control, which received funding as part of NASA's Deep Impact Mission, publically referred to as a facade mission stated as one that would research the center of comets. But the actual goal of the mission was to research different levels of sexual pleasures and activity experiments while in space against weightlessness, with the first studies beginning last summer. Space, earth, wherever - sounds like a good space science project to get involved in! So will we ever see NASASEX?
Russian space rocket
Space - rocketing hormones issue
Unfortunately, because of the weightlessness issue, astronauts were found to have a much higher sense of sensuality in space than on Earth due to less gravity, which in turn affects their hormone levels. This change in hormones caused a series of fights with the male astronauts after the Discovery space shuttle undocked last summer from the International Space Station while heading home. The only two astronauts onboard who were not involved in the fight were the two women astronauts, Stephanie Wilson and Lisa Nowak. But on the lighter side, this fight saved NASA $2 million dollars as they had been in the preparation of studying the effects of wounds while in space, which thanks to the male astronauts onboard the Discovery, now was already completed.
Mission to Mars::Sex in Space
Woman in space pulled
Meanwhile, the NASA "Sex in Space" program was pulled by NASA after the arrest of astronaut Lisa Nowak, with NASA feeling that to cancel the program was the politically correct thing to do. Instead, they chose to earmark the program to educate astronauts on "societal taboos" once they returned to earth in order to not repeat the same behavior as Nowak did. The study had found that once returning from space, earth hormone levels did not return to normal immediately, which could develop somewhat bizarre hormonal behavior post space missions.
Disadvantages of Sex in Space
Sex in space is nothing new in the world of the space rocket, spaceships, space, NASA, and the International Space Station. It just was never as blatantly discussed as now. Present-day reality checks are slowly recognizing that cosmonauts are human beings, and cannot always be prone to self-sacrifice with their sexual needs, especially if embarking on a space launch for a three-year Mars mission as compared to a six-month stay onboard the Space Station. But the truth is, nothing is known about sex in space--science doesn't know its dangers, its advantages, or in terms of physical and mental health--yet NASA has found that its risks are high, with open secrets that astronauts on a global basis do things that are left unmentioned in reports for the general public.NASA sex study results aren't all positive it seems.
The study of sex, whether by a NASA sex study or private space-tour companies for space tourism, is crucial to our push into the final frontier for the survival of mankind. But so far the dangers of sex in space are outweighing its advantages, regardless how romantic it may seem in novels such as "Flight" or in one of Robert Bigelow's space hotel complex ads. Nor are we discussing space sickness or choreographing the movements of space intimacy in a shuttle cabin measuring 65 cubic meters.
What we are basically discussing is the body momentarily flailing around the small cabin while impacting supplies and solid obstacles in the way, unless Velcro straps, bungees and zippers can be provided to counteract the lack of gravity--"Just a sec' hon, hold onto that thought while I get the Velcro out and get us hooked-in, strapped-in, and zipped-into something safe that we can bungee to the toilet right around the corner. Nooow...um...where were we at?" Come on--how romantic can THAT be anyway? Besides, right next door within breathing distance are a couple of other space cadets, bringing us to Izvestia Nauki's statement, "Making love in such cramped quarters in the presence of other people is like making out in the open berth of a railway car with lights on"! NASASEX may not be the most erotic thing around, actually!
International Space Station
Space science - body heat
A big issue of space sex is body heat--normal sex brings on lots of sweating and body heat--which can easily be dealt with on Earth through air conditioning, fans, and removing bedding and/or clothing. But in space, the body and spontaneous sex will appear to be much hotter and wetter than on Earth due to zero-G preventing the body from removing its body heat, due to lack of natural convection.
Any moisture associated with the sexual act will pool as floating droplets in the cabin and around the bodies, with air-warmed-by-body heat hanging close to the individual's skin similar to a body blanket. Other moistures are the body fluids involved in the sexual act. Unless contained, these also will be floating around in mid-air. Also, any heat and redistribution of body fluids during sex will cause the heart to be surrounded by extra blood, requiring the body to force-drink-fluids. Otherwise, dehydration will quickly develop if the sex act continues too long without breaks.
Space rocket body shape syndrome?
A few weeks later a person may notice their head and torso becoming slightly larger due to this same fluid distribution, with the legs becoming thinner and the penis becoming smaller in size when erect. This is due to the heart not working as well and the blood pressure being lower than normal, with the body's sensitivity becoming more heightened at the same time.
First space STDs?
For the most part, NASA personnel have been examined from top-to-bottom before ever launching into space, assuming that most of them will not take any sexual diseases into space with them. But what is a worry is the upcoming tourist space flights, as they do not have quite the "tight" regulations that NASA has. Money is their regulation--if a person can purchase a $25,000 ticket to go into space ---it is yours, my man (or woman)!
On Earth, most sexual diseases are limited to a sexual partner or sitting on the wrong toilet seat. In space, this is a little more complicated--with the transmission of venereal diseases serious in both settings quite possible. Without gravity to contain anything, the sexual act will bring about body fluids, small body hairs, or any disease-filled parasites the individual has carried into space with them, whether knowingly or unknowingly. Yes, Dr. Watson, microorganisms do not live forever but in closed habitats such as space dwellings, there will be an epidemic potential.
Inside the International Space Station
Difficulties of the Romantic Setting in Space
It is pretty difficult to have sex in space within a tiny area like the space shuttle with absolutely no gravity, with advice by scientists to "avoid the bedroom" for many reasons. The smallest movement against something hard will cause the body to have an "upward impetus". Astronauts, even while not having sex, during training and in space, rocket uncontrollably into controls, monitors, and supplies. Beds are suggested for sex only if two (or more) partners use some form of leverage straps--such as the above stated "Velcro straps, bungees and zippers"--or if the bodies are tethered down together. Another option is an oversized sleeping bag that is tied to a wall, or some form of surface. Got the picture?
Woman in space - pregnancy issues
Space medical research has shown studies where astronauts in space for extended periods of time lose serious levels of bone density. Because of these findings, babies conceived in space with no gravity may be born with fragile bones. However, space reproduction is a much needed area to be researched with much more testing and studies to be done.
What is known is that fetal development is in serious trouble with the absence of gravity loading, especially for human fetuses after a 26-week gestation period. Testing has shown a 13% to 17% fetal skeleton arrest in the fetus development when conceived in zero-G. This is because gravity loading is part of the proper formation of neural connections, required even after the birth of the child. Another thing that may influence the unborn fetus is cosmic radiation, with the possibility of a "synergistic relationship" developing between the ill effects of radiation and zero-G.
A woman in space also has a problem with the absorption of medication use--oral contraceptives is an unknown area, with studies of "other drugs" demonstrating that drugs consumed in space are not as easily absorbed as on Earth. With these kinds of statistics, it may be impossible for any type of human colonization on Mars or on the Moon, or at least it will heavily influence the type of future available to mankind. NASA Sex in Space programmes may not be viable means of colonization after all!
Sex In Space on TV!!!
The Universe: Sex in Space - Historic Episode Explores Human Side of Space The idea of extended human excursions beyond Earth is within a decade away as NASA plans long-term missions for lunar settlements and the independent space tourism business burgeons. As the human drive for intimacy and procreation will need to contend with extreme environments of space, The Universe series explores the human factor in a historic episode: Sex in Space.
An episode of The Universe series, now in its third season, will break ground on The History Channel when it premieres the episode Sex in Space. The topic has been considered taboo. However, as mankind moves to explore and colonize space, the realities of sexual relationships and reproduction need to be addressed. The show explores the physiological, psychological and cultural challenges of the human factor of sex in space and will delve into how the extreme environments of space exploration might effect copulation, conception and developing human tissues, as well as how issues around sex might impact the emotional lives of astronauts.
Prototype space hotels have been successfully orbiting Earth for a year and targets for long-term lunar settlements are inside a decade. As space tourism businesses burgeon and migration to space is advocated as an insurance of humanity's long-term survival, The Universe: Sex in Space pioneers the speculated boom in space sex with a groundbreaking episode. Theoretical physicist Michio Kaku and Vanna Bonta, FLIGHT quantum fiction series creator and inventor of the 2Suit, a flight suit that stabilizes human proximity for various forms of intimacy in microgravity environments, are among guests joining The History Channel premiere, which covers the topic from the sex act through birth and may get to the bottom of the rumors to find out if space sex has already happened. Rating: TV14
This hub brought to you...
by Julie-Ann Amos, professional writer, and owner of international writing agency www.ExquisiteWriting.com
Why not create your own HubPages? It's fun and you can make revenue from Adsense and other revenue streams on your pages. JOIN HUBPAGES NOW
This work is licenced under the Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this licence, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/ or send a letter to Creative Commons, 171 Second Street, Suite 300, San Francisco, California 94105, USA.
- A Mars Odyssey
Wonderful blog written by nancy houser about Mars and space exploration in general. Cannot recommend it highly enough!
Other hubs of interest
- Space Tourism and the World of Robert Bigelow
Many thanks to Bigelow Aerospace's media department for permission to use pictures approved by Robert Bigelow in this hub! Robert Bigelow, a 1967 graduate of the University of Arizona with a Bachelor of...
- Space Tourism & Space Travel - How Far Off Are We?
There was very little known about space tourism until the late 1900s with a major impact on the media developing about five years ago. Space shuttle launches have always caued a media frenzy, however, and...
- Vacationing in Outer Space
The age of space tourism is rapidly approaching. What was once reserved for a select group of Astronauts, and, recently, very wealthy millionaires, will soon be coming within reach of the common man. The...
- Korean Space Technologies
A South Korean woman with a PhD in biosystems engineering was chosen as the backup cosmonaut in the April 8 -19, 2008 first Korean In Space launch to the ISS (International Space Station), a mission that...