• Question: If their is no oxygen in space then how in the picture of a flag in space is the flag moving and fluttering?

    Asked by Wispa7911 to Stephen, Sita, Rory, Hannah, Alison on 13 Mar 2019.
    • Photo: Hannah Currivan

      Hannah Currivan answered on 13 Mar 2019:


      “A small telescoping arm was attached to the flagpole to keep the flag extended and perpendicular. As hard as the astronauts tried, the telescope wouldn’t fully extend. Thus the flag which should have been flat had its own permanent wave.”
      The wrong coating had been applied to the telescoping rod, so it wouldn’t fully extend, which is why the flag looks like it is waving in the wind. ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Photo: Stephen O'Connor

      Stephen O'Connor answered on 14 Mar 2019: last edited 14 Mar 2019 10:25 am


      You don’t need oxygen, or other gas molecules such as in air, to have the flag moving or fluttering.
      The momentum transferred by a person when planting the flag is enough to move it.
      In fact the flag may even move more in a vacuum (very little gas molecules – like in space) because of lower gas resistance.
      Check out this video where they show it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hMBCfuKs9i8

    • Photo: Sita Karki

      Sita Karki answered on 14 Mar 2019:


      It is moving probably because of the force applied by the astronaut and the force of the gravity.

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