As NASA’s Curiosity rover continues to inch across the red planet’s dusty Gale Crater, America’s interest in space exploration inches upward as well. Jeopardy!’s Ken Jennings is a bit of space nerd himself, and this month he’ll be navigating us through an asteroid belt of misconceptions about the exploration of the cosmos. Even if you’re not one of the 6 percent of Americans who believes that the moon landing was a hoax, you might have been fleeced by one or more of these fallacies about the final frontier.
Space Myth #4: People Exposed to the Vacuum of Space Would Explode.
It’s not something most of us will probably ever have to face, but still we wonder: what would happen to an unprotected person in the vacuum of space? Knowing what happens to deep-sea divers in similar situations, you’d be forgiven for believing the sci-fi version of this scenario: the unfortunate space traveler swells up in agony like Arnold Schwarzenegger in Total Recall and eventually blows up like that poor guy in Outland.