Science & Tech

Russian Cosmonaut Hands Over Command of Space Station to NASA Astronaut

As above, so beneath?

Change of Command

Whereas worldwide battle rages on the Earth beneath them, the Russians and Individuals working collectively aboard the Worldwide Space Station (ISS) have signaled that in area, no less than, there’s nonetheless peace.

This morning, Roscosmos cosmonaut Anton Shkaplerov formally handed command of the orbital lab over to NASA astronaut Thomas Marshburn  in what CBS area information reporter William Harwood described as “a sign of ongoing cooperation in space amid strained relations on Earth.”

Through the change-of-command ceremony, Shkaplerov did point out the Earthbound tensions attributable to his nation’s invasion of Ukraine, in accordance to Ars Technica‘s Eric Berger, but only briefly.

“The interactions seemed 100 percent genuine and friendly,” Berger wrote. “Shkaplerov only briefly referenced Earth-bound tensions, but said on orbit they were ‘space brothers and space sisters.’ It offers me some hope for the longer term.”

Honest Solidarity

As important because it appears on this geopolitical second, this poignant second of worldwide solidarity is way from unprecedented.

In 1975, again when Russia was nonetheless half of the Soviet Union and the ISS was nonetheless a glimmer of hope within the eyes of our respective governments, a historic handshake between cosmonaut Aleksay Leonov and astronaut Tom Stafford throughout a joint American-USSR docking mission heralded the start of cooperation between the 2 nations, which have been then locked into the warmth of the Chilly Battle.

The percentages-defying partnership has been examined in latest weeks, however has to date remained intact. Amid issues that the Russian invasion of Ukraine might lastly be what ends this cooperation that’s gone on for greater than 4 many years, there’s hope but that perhaps the worldwide workforce aboard the ISS might proceed to be beacons of hope for the remaining of us on Earth.

Extra on this unlikely partnership: How Chilly Battle Politics Formed the Worldwide Space Station [Smithsonian Magazine]

Extra on the Ukraine invasion’s influence on the ISS: The ISS: Probably the ‘Last Formal Diplomatic Link’ Of US and Russia

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