Astronauts listen to music in space

Alexander Gerst in space : What music the German astronaut hears at takeoff

Even if the space mission to the ISS is a highly scientific matter, there are various traditions, messages and emotional extras related to the journey through space. We have noted a few.

Blessings and rituals

In a prayer on Tuesday, an Orthodox priest blessed the rocket. He said a prayer at a makeshift altar at the base of the rocket. Then he sprinkled holy water on the rocket, as well as by bystanders of space personnel and reporters. The crew was not present at the ceremony.

One of the customs before the start is the flattened coin: A locomotive tows the rocket out of the hangar. In front of the launch pad, engineers, technicians and relatives of the spacemen lay coins on the tracks that the train crushes - for a successful and safe flight. By the way, the crew doesn't watch the rocket set up: a groom doesn't even see his bride before the wedding ceremony.

Unicef ​​ambassador

Alexander Gerst will draw attention to the Unicef ​​campaign “Dreams are limitless” on the ISS. Together with the United Nations Children's Fund, Unicef ​​Ambassador Gerst calls on young people to work for a better world for children, as Unicef ​​Germany announced in Cologne.

Playlist at the start

Alexander Gerst (42) has published a list of songs for the rocket launch. The selection is based on suggestions from Twitter users. "On the launch platform, 1 hour before take-off during the pressure tests, the crew listens to music over the radio," Gerst tweeted. For that he needs ideas.

1. Captain Future Theme (from the animated television series "Captain Future")

2. Castle in the snow (The Avener)

3. The man-machine (power plant)

4. When You Go Forward (Triangle Sun)

5. Astronaut (Sido feat. Andreas Bourani)

6. Five minutes (Her)

7. Today Here Tomorrow There (Hannes Wader)

8. Destiny (Zero 7)

9. Sunny Road (Emilíana Torrini)

Social media

During his first stay on the ISS in 2014, Alexander Gerst was a kind of social media outpost called Astro_Alex: he regularly sent pictures and impressions. His fans hope for repetition via Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.


How do astronauts who have returned to Earth react? The 42-year-old Gerst knows: "This is how you can recognize astronauts on Earth: They are sitting there with two pens, a spoon and a coffee mug in hand because they are not used to being able to put something down." Dpa / AFP

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