|My Ticket Stub|
This past weekend I went to the Tech Museum of Innovation in San Jose to watch the IMAX movie Journey to Space (2015). The colossal screen showcased footage from the international space station, developing space exploration technology, testing of new equipment, and animated projects of future missions. The movie as a whole focused on how far man has progressed in space exploration, and how future endeavors will result in human life on Mars.
One of the first lessons covered in Art, Science, and Technology is C.P. Snow’s famous work about the two diverging cultures in science and art. C.P. Snow’s third culture combines science and art, forming a better-balanced people capable of solving the world’s most threatening problems like over-population. Journey to Space shows how space-exploration would not have gotten to the advanced state it is now without combining knowledge of art and science. Because of advancements in astronaut suits and virtual reality simulators, NASA and other space exploration companies will in the future be able to solve humanities pivotal problem of over-population by sending people to live on Mars and other habitable planets.
EVA (extravehicular activity) suits have had a much-needed upgrade ever since humanities first trip to space. In 1965 a Soviet cosmonaut named Alexey Leonov recorded the first moonwalk ever by humanity. Alexey commented that the walk was easy, but he had no means of motion other than pulling on a rope, because his EVA suit was stiff and ballooned from the internal pressure against the vacuum of space. Mars’ gravity compared to the Moon’s is much greater, so a suit with more versatility of motion is a necessity. In Journey to Space, a NASA EVA suit designer took us through her skill of combining art with science to develop a better astronaut suit capable of a wider range of motion, due to her use of stronger, more flexible materials, and better design. With these advancements in EVA suits the gravity of Mars will not be a problem for future astronauts.
Another example from the IMAX film of science and art converging was of NASA’s virtual reality simulation lab. All aspects of space exploration are trained for in this lab with takeoff, EVA missions, and landing. The simulation needs to be accurate to the real thing so with the help of current planet topography maps, artists and designers have developed incredibly true to life simulations using perspective, an artistic technique that is essential for accuracy. Simulations with accurate perspective give the training astronauts an extremely good idea of what to expect when they embark on the real journey.
|Artists rendering of future EVA technology|
|Nasa virtual reality training lab|
I would recommend this IMAX film to people interested in humanities current position in space exploration technology. It gives an in depth view of how astronauts and scientists have prepared for future missions and how technology and equipment has advanced ever since humanities first endeavors into space. Space exploration is one of the many fields of science that is greatly benefited by combining art and science. Through the research put into upgrading EVA suits, and the advanced virtual reality training simulations, humanity will be able to achieve many of it’s goals, and will in the future be able to prevent the global issue of over-population.