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Astronaut Chris Hadfield’s Memoir Is Being Turned Into An ABC Comedy Pilot

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astronaut's guideWith America’s newfound attention to conquering space still in its relative infancy, it’ll be a few more years before a new class of astronauts implants their names and achievements in our minds. (Not that I’m trying to downplay the hardworking astronauts of today, but society at large is slow on the upkeep.) But one space-goer, Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield, made quite a name for himself last year by turning the International Space Station into a social media hub. His life and times are about to meet a much larger audience as his memoir An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth has been given a pilot commitment by ABC. The Astronaut Broadcasting Company?

The 2013 memoir, with a full title of An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth: What Going to Space Taught Me About Ingenuity, Determination, and Being Prepared for Anything, was at the center of a heated bidding war between networks, with ABC coming out on top. They’ve only given the project a pilot order, with no guarantee for the future, but I guess if anyone knows what questionable futures are like, astronauts do.

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TCM Spotlighting Science In The Movies Throughout January

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CurieWe’ve been highlighting several ongoing science fiction marathons this week, but those will be drawing to a close with the end of the holidays. If you still want to keep your DVR stocked with science- and science fiction-related programming, you’ll want to figure out where the hell TCM is on your cable or satellite. Beginning tomorrow night, and continuing throughout the month of January, TCM will be filling their Friday-night lineup with classic movies that “delve into issues of scientific discovery, exploration and alteration, with some side trips into science fiction.”

Sure, that description sounds kind of broad, so let’s get specific. Each of the Friday-night events will focus on different scientific themes, ranging from “Scientists on a Mission” to “Great Inventors” to “Mad Scientists.” And as we all know, mad science is the very best science. Tomorrow night’s themes are “Nobel Prize Winners” and one of our favorites here at GFR, “Rocket Science.”

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Merry Christmas! Astronauts Conduct Emergency Repairs On ISS Cooling System

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spacewalkUnless his flying reindeer are truly amazing, like Falcor, Santa probably doesn’t make it to space. Or maybe he does, and that’s actually where he is the other 364 days of the Earth year. A galactic sleigh would have come in pretty handy at the ISS this Christmas, as astronauts had to attend to an emergency situation that led to a holiday spacewalk. You know, to take in all the lights.

I mean, they’re not decorating the tree, making a holiday dinner, or getting drunk on eggnog, so why not?

American astronauts Rick Mastracchio and Michael Hopkins have gotten to walk in space twice in the past four days. Today’s was the second Christmas Eve spacewalk ever. Is there a best day for a spacewalk? I think I’d like to do it on New Year’s Day, maybe. I probably wouldn’t enjoy an emergency spacewalk at any time, though, and that’s what these were. NASA helpfully tweeted along the way and provided a video feed.

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Overview Video Has Astronauts Talking About How Space Changed Their View Of The World

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If you’ve seen Gravity, you undoubtedly spent some of that time marveling at the views of Earth. Who cares if they were CGI? Even George Clooney’s astronaut Matt Kowalski, fully aware that he was approaching the end of his life, caught a glimpse of the Ganges and remarked over its beauty. People who have been to space report all kinds of effects that the experience has on their lives, and in the video called Overview, assembled by Planetary Collective, astronauts articulate how space changed their perspectives on the world.

In 1968, just before America put a man on the Moon, Apollo 8 astronauts circled the Moon and took photos of Earth, prompting the famous “Earthrise over the Moon” image. It was the first time people got to see Earth as a whole — not as countries delineated by boundaries and borders, not as people clashing over religion or other beliefs, but as one unified system. The astronauts in Planetary Collective’s short documentary Overview, which serves as a teaser for their feature-length documentary Continuum, talk about this pivotal moment and how their experiences in space changed their understanding of the world, themselves, and what it means to be human.

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TV Review: The Challenger Disaster Is A Surprisingly Compelling And Profound Docudrama

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I remember January 28, 1986. I was seven years old. I, like so many other excited students, gathered in the cafeteria of my school just before lunch to watch the Challenger take off. I didn’t know a whole lot about space back then, except that it was far away, huge, and mysterious, and that those qualities also made it pretty cool. I had absorbed by then, though, that going into space was Important. It was one of those adventures that has and hopefully will continue to define humankind. I also knew that on board that ship was a teacher who also happened to be a woman. This brought the mission much closer to home for me, as it did for so many people. I remember watching the liftoff and clapping along with everyone else, even the folks in NASA’s control room.

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This Video Of A Soyuz Capsle Is The Closest We’ll Get To Experiencing Reentry

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If you’re anything like me, you’ve fantasized about being an astronaut. Maybe this stopped when you saw Gravity, or maybe the thought of running into George Clooney in space only deepened your desire. But if you’re anything like me, you have to content yourself with reading and watching Carl Sagan and Neil deGrasse Tyson (not that those are small consolations), scouring NASA news, geeking out to incredible Hubble photos, and waiting with a mixture of hope and fear for the Mars One project to produce a spectacular success, a catastrophe, or perhaps nothing at all.

Well, today you can get one step closer to living the dream. The ESA has released a video documenting the return of astronauts from the ISS on a Russian Soyuz spacecraft. You don’t just get to watch from the outside—you get to watch from the interior. The video comes from a lesson to the ESA’s 2009 astronaut class, and splices together interviews and reentry footage. At just over 20 minutes long it’s not a quick take, but if you have any interest in space whatsoever, you’ll not only watch the whole thing, you’ll likely watch it more than once.