NASA forced to issue statement after accidentally releasing audio of 'distressed astronauts'

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By stefan armitage

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NASA moved swiftly to dispel concerns after an unintentional livestream mishap from the International Space Station (ISS) sparked alarm across social media.

The incident occurred when a routine medical simulation - part of crew training exercises - was inadvertently broadcast to the public, leading to concern from the public, per BBC News.

GettyImages-115569517.jpgNASA has issued a statement on the concerning message. Credit: NASA/Getty

The confusion unfolded during NASA’s livestream, which abruptly displayed a message at 5:30PM CDT (10:30PM GMT) on Wednesday, notifying viewers of a temporary interruption. During this interruption, audio from the simulation emerged, detailing a scenario involving a commander experiencing decompression sickness.

In a statement posted on NASA’s ISS account, officials clarified: “There is no emergency situation going on aboard the International Space Station.

"Audio was inadvertently misrouted from an ongoing simulation where crew members and ground teams train for various scenarios in space."


Decompression sickness is often referred to as "the bends" and is more commonly associated with scuba/deep sea diving.

The person overseeing the simulation, identified as a flight surgeon from SpaceX’s mission control center in Hawthorne, California, could be heard directing actions related to the emergency.

“So if we could get the commander back in his suit, get it sealed … for suited hyperbaric treatment … Prior to sealing, closing the visor and pressurizing the suit, I would like you to check his pulse one more time,” the flight surgeon instructed.

Flight surgeons, according to NASA, are specialized physicians trained in aerospace medicine who work closely with mission control centers to handle medical emergencies during space missions, per The Guardian.

GettyImages-114951190.jpgCredit: NASA / Getty

Despite the gravity of the simulated emergency, NASA assured the public that the ISS crew was not in any actual danger. The simulation was part of routine training exercises, and crew members were in their scheduled sleep period at the time of the incident.

As news of the incident spread, popular space-related accounts on social media expressed concern and confusion. Some initially mistook the simulation for a real emergency, prompting reactions ranging from concern to disbelief. Eric Berger, space editor at Ars Technica, described the broadcast as “frankly scary".

SpaceX later clarified that the audio heard during the livestream was part of a training test conducted at their facility in California, emphasizing that all crew involved were safe and healthy.


"This was only a test. The crew training in Hawthorne is safe and healthy as is the Dragon spacecraft docked to the @space_station," SpaceX tweeted in its own statement.

NASA concluded its statement reaffirming the wellbeing of the ISS crew and confirming that scheduled operations, including an upcoming spacewalk, would proceed as planned.

Featured image credit: NASA/Getty 

NASA forced to issue statement after accidentally releasing audio of 'distressed astronauts'

vt-author-image

By stefan armitage

Article saved!Article saved!

NASA moved swiftly to dispel concerns after an unintentional livestream mishap from the International Space Station (ISS) sparked alarm across social media.

The incident occurred when a routine medical simulation - part of crew training exercises - was inadvertently broadcast to the public, leading to concern from the public, per BBC News.

GettyImages-115569517.jpgNASA has issued a statement on the concerning message. Credit: NASA/Getty

The confusion unfolded during NASA’s livestream, which abruptly displayed a message at 5:30PM CDT (10:30PM GMT) on Wednesday, notifying viewers of a temporary interruption. During this interruption, audio from the simulation emerged, detailing a scenario involving a commander experiencing decompression sickness.

In a statement posted on NASA’s ISS account, officials clarified: “There is no emergency situation going on aboard the International Space Station.

"Audio was inadvertently misrouted from an ongoing simulation where crew members and ground teams train for various scenarios in space."


Decompression sickness is often referred to as "the bends" and is more commonly associated with scuba/deep sea diving.

The person overseeing the simulation, identified as a flight surgeon from SpaceX’s mission control center in Hawthorne, California, could be heard directing actions related to the emergency.

“So if we could get the commander back in his suit, get it sealed … for suited hyperbaric treatment … Prior to sealing, closing the visor and pressurizing the suit, I would like you to check his pulse one more time,” the flight surgeon instructed.

Flight surgeons, according to NASA, are specialized physicians trained in aerospace medicine who work closely with mission control centers to handle medical emergencies during space missions, per The Guardian.

GettyImages-114951190.jpgCredit: NASA / Getty

Despite the gravity of the simulated emergency, NASA assured the public that the ISS crew was not in any actual danger. The simulation was part of routine training exercises, and crew members were in their scheduled sleep period at the time of the incident.

As news of the incident spread, popular space-related accounts on social media expressed concern and confusion. Some initially mistook the simulation for a real emergency, prompting reactions ranging from concern to disbelief. Eric Berger, space editor at Ars Technica, described the broadcast as “frankly scary".

SpaceX later clarified that the audio heard during the livestream was part of a training test conducted at their facility in California, emphasizing that all crew involved were safe and healthy.


"This was only a test. The crew training in Hawthorne is safe and healthy as is the Dragon spacecraft docked to the @space_station," SpaceX tweeted in its own statement.

NASA concluded its statement reaffirming the wellbeing of the ISS crew and confirming that scheduled operations, including an upcoming spacewalk, would proceed as planned.

Featured image credit: NASA/Getty