Elon Musk’s SpaceX company launched 4 astronauts in his Crew Dragon spacecraft for the International Space Station (ISS). When all these astronauts reached the ISS, the 7 astronauts already present greeted them with folded hands and hugs. When photos and videos from that reunion surfaced on social media, it was sure to raise questions in people’s minds. When social distancing has become essential for the peoples of the earth, is it not necessary in space?
No Corona on ISS?
For the next four days, all 11 astronauts will remain on the ISS, which is close to a record 13 astronauts at a time. Currently, six American astronauts, two Russians, two Japanese and one French are present in the ISS. Three American astronauts and a Japanese astronaut will return by Wednesday. After all, how did he make sure that the Corona virus that caused an uproar on earth didn’t infect the ISS? People have raised a lot of questions on social media.
So what does the astronaut do?
In fact, astronauts are quarantined for two to three weeks before going into space. This rule was in place before the corona virus outbreak spread across the earth. Astronauts fell ill in space during NASA’s US Space Agency Apollo program, and their medicine started to run out. It was a rare case, but two weeks of quarantine was made mandatory afterwards. During this time, limited meetings could be arranged with close relatives.
Astronauts now spend two weeks in quarantine before their flights. These neighborhoods are located at NASA’s Kennedy and Johnson Space Center and Roscosmos at the Baykonur Cosmodrome in southern Kazakhstan. Permission to meet with these people is given to specific people who undergo medical tests. Most of the work is done from home after the corona virus outbreak.
… so as not to cause infection from space
Not only that, teams returning from space missions are also being quarantined. This is so that no infection from the outside world comes to earth. NASA quarantined its Apollo 11, 12, 13 and 14 missions at the mobile quarantine facility after returning from the moon. Samples brought in from the moon were also quarantined and kept in the Lunar Reception Laboratory (LRL). Even Neil Armstrong, who was the first to walk on the moon, celebrated his birthday in his forties.