Astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley had some firm on their historic flight to house at present: a stuffed dinosaur tucked into one of many seats on SpaceX’s Crew Dragon.
The toy was noticed throughout preparations for launch on Wednesday and Saturday, and geophysicist Mika McKinnon shortly identified it on Twitter as a TY Flippables Tremor Dinosaur.
Toys like this have flown with astronauts and cosmonauts for years. When the toy begins floating, it signifies to the buckled-in passengers that they’ve reached zero-g, and are experiencing weightlessness. A luxurious Earth flew on the uncrewed take a look at flight of Crew Dragon to the ISS again in March 2019. Just earlier than launch, SpaceX CEO Elon Musk tweeted an image, calling the plush a “super high tech zero-g indicator.”
Little Earth, or “Earthy,” was an enormous hit with the ISS crew and ended up staying aboard even after the Crew Dragon returned residence. Last 12 months, Behnken stated that he anticipated Earthy to welcome him and Hurley aboard. “Hopefully he can walk us through the emergency brief and he’s a full-fledged station crew member by the time that we get there,” Behnken said in an interview final March.
Dinosaur toys have flown on the ISS earlier than. In 2013, astronaut Karen Nyberg (who occurs to be married to Hurley) sewed a toy dinosaur for her son Jack whereas on the ISS.
The dinosaur, Behnken and Hurley are anticipated to affix Earthy on the ISS tomorrow, May 31st, after 19 hours in orbit. Docking is scheduled for 10:29AM ET and might be live-streamed on NASA TV.