Astronauts at the International Space Station (ISS) did not let the COVID-19 pandemic situation dull their festive cheer as they took the day off to celebrate Christmas in space. Some of them also decided to send a message back to earth about the resilience of humans.
Hours of operation for Mission Control at NASA Johnson?
24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year
Flight controllers get a special #Holiday shoutout from @Space_Station residents @NASA_Astronauts Kate Rubins, @AstroVicGlover, & @Astro_illini!
: NASA/Anthony Vareha pic.twitter.com/tYgrQpz5H8
— Johnson Space Center (@NASA_Johnson) December 24, 2020
.@NASA_Astronauts Mike Hopkins, Victor Glover, Shannon Walker, Kate Rubins, and @JAXA_en astronaut Soichi Noguchi reflect on an unprecedented year and remind us of the resilience of the human spirit as we enter a new year. pic.twitter.com/zK9CgG9ZdA
— International Space Station (@Space_Station) December 22, 2020
All seven members of the ISS’s Expedition 64 crew took the day off to celebrate the festival and decked the ISS with Christmas decoration. They recorded a message about the resilience of humanity, especially during the tough pandemic times and further explained the significance of the name they gave the SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule that launched four of the astronauts to the space station in November.
NASA also revealed that they sent a special spacecraft with presents for the astronauts aboard the ISS. The North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) and Analytical Graphics, Inc. (AGI) have unveiled a new video of Santa’s sleigh flying by the station for the festival.
— NASA (@NASA) December 24, 2020
“For the first time ever, the Federal Aviation Administration(FAA) issued Santa a special commercial space license for a crewed mission to the International Space Station using his StarSleigh-1 space capsule powered by the Rudolph Rocket,” FAA had said in a statement.
For the past 20 years astronauts have had to celebrate the festive season in space and have kept up the tradition of doing so successfully. They find new and innovative ways to spread the Christmas cheer each year owing to the swift development in science and technology.