Discussion:
YASID space station underwear for reaction mass
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Nyrath
2018-06-25 16:15:02 UTC
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I am pretty sure this is an old short story by Arthur C. Clark or Robert Heinlein.

There was a scene on an early model space station. One of the construction crew relates an embarrassing story. At that time the station had not spun up to create artificial gravity so everything was in free fall. The man had somehow managed to get himself stranded in the middle of a room, with no way to move to within grabbing distance of a wall hand-hold.

He figures the only thing to do is to throw an object away and use the recoil to propel himself towards a wall. Unfortunately he had just woken up so is only dressed in his underwear. He has to throw that away since that is the only reaction mass available.

The embarrassing part was of course that was the day the station was entertaining visiting VIPs who were inspecting the progress. Who were annoyed at the nude man frantically scrambling away down the corridor.

Does this story sound familiar?
Panthera Tigris Altaica
2018-06-25 16:53:52 UTC
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On Monday, June 25, 2018 at 12:15:05 PM UTC-4, Nyrath wrote:
> I am pretty sure this is an old short story by Arthur C. Clark or Robert Heinlein.
>
> There was a scene on an early model space station. One of the construction crew relates an embarrassing story. At that time the station had not spun up to create artificial gravity so everything was in free fall. The man had somehow managed to get himself stranded in the middle of a room, with no way to move to within grabbing distance of a wall hand-hold.
>
> He figures the only thing to do is to throw an object away and use the recoil to propel himself towards a wall. Unfortunately he had just woken up so is only dressed in his underwear. He has to throw that away since that is the only reaction mass available.
>
> The embarrassing part was of course that was the day the station was entertaining visiting VIPs who were inspecting the progress. Who were annoyed at the nude man frantically scrambling away down the corridor.
>
> Does this story sound familiar?

There was, I think, a Heinlein story which had as an aside a tale about a gentleman who applied Newton's Laws by ripping pieces off his underwear and throwing them as hard as he could to move towards one wall of a station. He threw the last piece just as the station commander's wife came into view. Would that be the story you're thinking of?
Sjouke Burry
2018-06-25 18:16:04 UTC
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On 25-6-2018 18:15, Nyrath wrote:
> I am pretty sure this is an old short story by Arthur C. Clark or Robert Heinlein.
>
> There was a scene on an early model space station. One of the construction crew relates an embarrassing story. At that time the station had not spun up to create artificial gravity so everything was in free fall. The man had somehow managed to get himself stranded in the middle of a room, with no way to move to within grabbing distance of a wall hand-hold.
>
> He figures the only thing to do is to throw an object away and use the recoil to propel himself towards a wall. Unfortunately he had just woken up so is only dressed in his underwear. He has to throw that away since that is the only reaction mass available.
>
> The embarrassing part was of course that was the day the station was entertaining visiting VIPs who were inspecting the progress. Who were annoyed at the nude man frantically scrambling away down the corridor.
>
> Does this story sound familiar?
>
No,
m***@gmail.com
2018-06-25 20:40:49 UTC
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On Monday, June 25, 2018 at 5:15:05 PM UTC+1, Nyrath wrote:
> I am pretty sure this is an old short story by Arthur C. Clark or Robert Heinlein.
>
> There was a scene on an early model space station. One of the construction crew relates an embarrassing story. At that time the station had not spun up to create artificial gravity so everything was in free fall. The man had somehow managed to get himself stranded in the middle of a room, with no way to move to within grabbing distance of a wall hand-hold.
>
> He figures the only thing to do is to throw an object away and use the recoil to propel himself towards a wall. Unfortunately he had just woken up so is only dressed in his underwear. He has to throw that away since that is the only reaction mass available.
>
> The embarrassing part was of course that was the day the station was entertaining visiting VIPs who were inspecting the progress. Who were annoyed at the nude man frantically scrambling away down the corridor.
>
> Does this story sound familiar?


It's from ACC's *The Sands of Mars*. One of the crew is describing an embarrassing moment when he found himself stranded in mid-air in the zero-g section, and using his underwear as reaction mass. Unfortunately the Director was showing his wife around the station, hence the man's change of jobs.

Mike Stone, Peterborough, England

Always drink upriver from the herd.
Robert Carnegie
2018-06-25 21:00:28 UTC
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On Monday, 25 June 2018 21:40:52 UTC+1, ***@gmail.com wrote:
> On Monday, June 25, 2018 at 5:15:05 PM UTC+1, Nyrath wrote:
> > I am pretty sure this is an old short story by Arthur C. Clark or Robert Heinlein.
> >
> > There was a scene on an early model space station. One of the construction crew relates an embarrassing story. At that time the station had not spun up to create artificial gravity so everything was in free fall. The man had somehow managed to get himself stranded in the middle of a room, with no way to move to within grabbing distance of a wall hand-hold.
> >
> > He figures the only thing to do is to throw an object away and use the recoil to propel himself towards a wall. Unfortunately he had just woken up so is only dressed in his underwear. He has to throw that away since that is the only reaction mass available.
> >
> > The embarrassing part was of course that was the day the station was entertaining visiting VIPs who were inspecting the progress. Who were annoyed at the nude man frantically scrambling away down the corridor.
> >
> > Does this story sound familiar?
>
>
> It's from ACC's *The Sands of Mars*. One of the crew is describing an embarrassing moment when he found himself stranded in mid-air in the zero-g section, and using his underwear as reaction mass. Unfortunately the Director was showing his wife around the station, hence the man's change of jobs.
>
> Mike Stone, Peterborough, England
>
> Always drink upriver from the herd.

There's a controversial Doctor Who episode where
the Doctor uses a cricket ball; it bounces off the
hull and he catches it. That part is okay...
but he is /outside/ the spaceship.
Dorothy J Heydt
2018-06-25 22:04:03 UTC
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In article <0f1a6aae-93d3-4735-a33e-***@googlegroups.com>,
Robert Carnegie <***@excite.com> wrote:
>On Monday, 25 June 2018 21:40:52 UTC+1, ***@gmail.com wrote:
>> On Monday, June 25, 2018 at 5:15:05 PM UTC+1, Nyrath wrote:
>> > I am pretty sure this is an old short story by Arthur C. Clark or
>Robert Heinlein.
>> >
>> > There was a scene on an early model space station. One of the
>construction crew relates an embarrassing story. At that time the
>station had not spun up to create artificial gravity so everything was
>in free fall. The man had somehow managed to get himself stranded in the
>middle of a room, with no way to move to within grabbing distance of a
>wall hand-hold.
>> >
>> > He figures the only thing to do is to throw an object away and use
>the recoil to propel himself towards a wall. Unfortunately he had just
>woken up so is only dressed in his underwear. He has to throw that away
>since that is the only reaction mass available.
>> >
>> > The embarrassing part was of course that was the day the station was
>entertaining visiting VIPs who were inspecting the progress. Who were
>annoyed at the nude man frantically scrambling away down the corridor.
>> >
>> > Does this story sound familiar?
>>
>>
>> It's from ACC's *The Sands of Mars*. One of the crew is describing an
>embarrassing moment when he found himself stranded in mid-air in the
>zero-g section, and using his underwear as reaction mass. Unfortunately
>the Director was showing his wife around the station, hence the man's
>change of jobs.
>>
>> Mike Stone, Peterborough, England
>>
>> Always drink upriver from the herd.
>
>There's a controversial Doctor Who episode where
>the Doctor uses a cricket ball; it bounces off the
>hull and he catches it. That part is okay...
>but he is /outside/ the spaceship.

Hm, I don't think I've seen that one. Can you remember the
title? Which Doctor it was?

--
Dorothy J. Heydt
Vallejo, California
djheydt at gmail dot com
Moriarty
2018-06-26 00:02:49 UTC
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On Tuesday, June 26, 2018 at 8:30:05 AM UTC+10, Dorothy J Heydt wrote:
> In article <0f1a6aae-93d3-4735-a33e-***@googlegroups.com>,
> Robert Carnegie <***@excite.com> wrote:

<snip>

> >There's a controversial Doctor Who episode where
> >the Doctor uses a cricket ball; it bounces off the
> >hull and he catches it. That part is okay...
> >but he is /outside/ the spaceship.
>
> Hm, I don't think I've seen that one. Can you remember the
> title? Which Doctor it was?

Definitely Peter Davison. Google tells me it was "Four to Doomsday". The Doctor finds himself floating in space between a spaceship and the TARDIS. He hurls a cricket ball at the spaceship, it bounces back to him and his catching it gives him enough momentum to reach the TARDIS.

-Moriarty
Carl Fink
2018-06-26 00:57:02 UTC
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On 2018-06-26, Moriarty <***@ivillage.com> wrote:
> On Tuesday, June 26, 2018 at 8:30:05 AM UTC+10, Dorothy J Heydt wrote:
>> In article <0f1a6aae-93d3-4735-a33e-***@googlegroups.com>,
>> Robert Carnegie <***@excite.com> wrote:
>
><snip>
>
>> >There's a controversial Doctor Who episode where
>> >the Doctor uses a cricket ball; it bounces off the
>> >hull and he catches it. That part is okay...
>> >but he is /outside/ the spaceship.
>>
>> Hm, I don't think I've seen that one. Can you remember the
>> title? Which Doctor it was?
>
> Definitely Peter Davison. Google tells me it was "Four to Doomsday". The Doctor finds himself floating in space between a spaceship and the TARDIS. He hurls a cricket ball at the spaceship, it bounces back to him and his catching it gives him enough momentum to reach the TARDIS.

Why would that be controversial? He would gain momentum from both his throw,
and catching the ball. The ship would gain equal momentum the other way.
Very basic physics.
--
Carl Fink ***@nitpicking.com

Read John Grant's book, Corrupted Science: http://a.co/9UsUoGu
Dedicated to ... Carl Fink!
h***@gmail.com
2018-06-26 01:02:57 UTC
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On Tuesday, June 26, 2018 at 10:57:04 AM UTC+10, Carl Fink wrote:
> On 2018-06-26, Moriarty <***@ivillage.com> wrote:
> > On Tuesday, June 26, 2018 at 8:30:05 AM UTC+10, Dorothy J Heydt wrote:
> >> In article <0f1a6aae-93d3-4735-a33e-***@googlegroups.com>,
> >> Robert Carnegie <***@excite.com> wrote:
> >
> ><snip>
> >
> >> >There's a controversial Doctor Who episode where
> >> >the Doctor uses a cricket ball; it bounces off the
> >> >hull and he catches it. That part is okay...
> >> >but he is /outside/ the spaceship.
> >>
> >> Hm, I don't think I've seen that one. Can you remember the
> >> title? Which Doctor it was?
> >
> > Definitely Peter Davison. Google tells me it was "Four to Doomsday". The Doctor finds himself floating in space between a spaceship and the TARDIS. He hurls a cricket ball at the spaceship, it bounces back to him and his catching it gives him enough momentum to reach the TARDIS.
>
> Why would that be controversial? He would gain momentum from both his throw,
> and catching the ball. The ship would gain equal momentum the other way.
> Very basic physics.

a) The amount of momentum may not be huge. (Of course TV and movies commonly show knockback from being hit by bullets etc)
b) I suspect that throwing something in space could be an interesting exercise.
Dimensional Traveler
2018-06-26 01:12:24 UTC
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On 6/25/2018 6:02 PM, ***@gmail.com wrote:
> On Tuesday, June 26, 2018 at 10:57:04 AM UTC+10, Carl Fink wrote:
>> On 2018-06-26, Moriarty <***@ivillage.com> wrote:
>>> On Tuesday, June 26, 2018 at 8:30:05 AM UTC+10, Dorothy J Heydt wrote:
>>>> In article <0f1a6aae-93d3-4735-a33e-***@googlegroups.com>,
>>>> Robert Carnegie <***@excite.com> wrote:
>>>
>>> <snip>
>>>
>>>>> There's a controversial Doctor Who episode where
>>>>> the Doctor uses a cricket ball; it bounces off the
>>>>> hull and he catches it. That part is okay...
>>>>> but he is /outside/ the spaceship.
>>>>
>>>> Hm, I don't think I've seen that one. Can you remember the
>>>> title? Which Doctor it was?
>>>
>>> Definitely Peter Davison. Google tells me it was "Four to Doomsday". The Doctor finds himself floating in space between a spaceship and the TARDIS. He hurls a cricket ball at the spaceship, it bounces back to him and his catching it gives him enough momentum to reach the TARDIS.
>>
>> Why would that be controversial? He would gain momentum from both his throw,
>> and catching the ball. The ship would gain equal momentum the other way.
>> Very basic physics.
>
> a) The amount of momentum may not be huge. (Of course TV and movies commonly show knockback from being hit by bullets etc)
> b) I suspect that throwing something in space could be an interesting exercise.
>
Unless the person figures out how to throw hard from their center of
mass, it strikes me that the most likely result is them spinning nearly
in place with only a slight drift.

--
Inquiring minds want to know while minds with a self-preservation
instinct are running screaming.
Kevrob
2018-06-26 01:39:29 UTC
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On Monday, June 25, 2018 at 9:12:18 PM UTC-4, Dimensional Traveler wrote:
> On 6/25/2018 6:02 PM, ***@gmail.com wrote:
> > On Tuesday, June 26, 2018 at 10:57:04 AM UTC+10, Carl Fink wrote:
> >> On 2018-06-26, Moriarty <***@ivillage.com> wrote:
> >>> On Tuesday, June 26, 2018 at 8:30:05 AM UTC+10, Dorothy J Heydt wrote:
> >>>> In article <0f1a6aae-93d3-4735-a33e-***@googlegroups.com>,
> >>>> Robert Carnegie <***@excite.com> wrote:
> >>>
> >>> <snip>
> >>>
> >>>>> There's a controversial Doctor Who episode where
> >>>>> the Doctor uses a cricket ball; it bounces off the
> >>>>> hull and he catches it. That part is okay...
> >>>>> but he is /outside/ the spaceship.
> >>>>
> >>>> Hm, I don't think I've seen that one. Can you remember the
> >>>> title? Which Doctor it was?
> >>>
> >>> Definitely Peter Davison. Google tells me it was "Four to Doomsday". The Doctor finds himself floating in space between a spaceship and the TARDIS. He hurls a cricket ball at the spaceship, it bounces back to him and his catching it gives him enough momentum to reach the TARDIS.
> >>
> >> Why would that be controversial? He would gain momentum from both his throw,
> >> and catching the ball. The ship would gain equal momentum the other way.
> >> Very basic physics.
> >
> > a) The amount of momentum may not be huge. (Of course TV and movies commonly show knockback from being hit by bullets etc)
> > b) I suspect that throwing something in space could be an interesting exercise.
> >
> Unless the person figures out how to throw hard from their center of
> mass, it strikes me that the most likely result is them spinning nearly
> in place with only a slight drift.
>

I'm watching baseball at the moment, and know comparatively little
about cricket, but.....

Bodyline....IN SPACE!!!!!!

Kevin R
Moriarty
2018-06-26 01:08:04 UTC
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On Tuesday, June 26, 2018 at 10:57:04 AM UTC+10, Carl Fink wrote:
> On 2018-06-26, Moriarty <***@ivillage.com> wrote:
> > On Tuesday, June 26, 2018 at 8:30:05 AM UTC+10, Dorothy J Heydt wrote:
> >> In article <0f1a6aae-93d3-4735-a33e-***@googlegroups.com>,
> >> Robert Carnegie <***@excite.com> wrote:
> >
> ><snip>
> >
> >> >There's a controversial Doctor Who episode where
> >> >the Doctor uses a cricket ball; it bounces off the
> >> >hull and he catches it. That part is okay...
> >> >but he is /outside/ the spaceship.
> >>
> >> Hm, I don't think I've seen that one. Can you remember the
> >> title? Which Doctor it was?
> >
> > Definitely Peter Davison. Google tells me it was "Four to Doomsday". The Doctor finds himself floating in space between a spaceship and the TARDIS. He hurls a cricket ball at the spaceship, it bounces back to him and his catching it gives him enough momentum to reach the TARDIS.
>
> Why would that be controversial? He would gain momentum from both his throw,
> and catching the ball. The ship would gain equal momentum the other way.
> Very basic physics.

I'm not sure. It may be that I've mis-described the scene, it being well over 20 years since I saw it. Perhaps Robert, who made the claim, can expand?

-Moriarty
Dorothy J Heydt
2018-06-26 04:08:20 UTC
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In article <f9f9f970-4725-417a-a2d9-***@googlegroups.com>,
Moriarty <***@ivillage.com> wrote:
>On Tuesday, June 26, 2018 at 8:30:05 AM UTC+10, Dorothy J Heydt wrote:
>> In article <0f1a6aae-93d3-4735-a33e-***@googlegroups.com>,
>> Robert Carnegie <***@excite.com> wrote:
>
><snip>
>
>> >There's a controversial Doctor Who episode where
>> >the Doctor uses a cricket ball; it bounces off the
>> >hull and he catches it. That part is okay...
>> >but he is /outside/ the spaceship.
>>
>> Hm, I don't think I've seen that one. Can you remember the
>> title? Which Doctor it was?
>
>Definitely Peter Davison.

Yes, I rather suspected it would be he. He's the one who went
around in cricketing togs all the time. I saw only the first two
or three of his episodes, because KQED stopped showing them.

>Google tells me it was "Four to Doomsday". The
>Doctor finds himself floating in space between a spaceship and the
>TARDIS. He hurls a cricket ball at the spaceship, it bounces back to him
>and his catching it gives him enough momentum to reach the TARDIS.

And, come to that, throwing the ball in the first place would
have given him some momentum away from it. (Remember
_Destination Moon_, and the Woody Woodpecker cartoon, showing
Woody propelling a rowboat along by firing a shotgun off the
stern?)

--
Dorothy J. Heydt
Vallejo, California
djheydt at gmail dot com
h***@gmail.com
2018-06-26 04:48:25 UTC
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On Tuesday, June 26, 2018 at 2:30:04 PM UTC+10, Dorothy J Heydt wrote:
> In article <f9f9f970-4725-417a-a2d9-***@googlegroups.com>,
> Moriarty <***@ivillage.com> wrote:
> >On Tuesday, June 26, 2018 at 8:30:05 AM UTC+10, Dorothy J Heydt wrote:
> >> In article <0f1a6aae-93d3-4735-a33e-***@googlegroups.com>,
> >> Robert Carnegie <***@excite.com> wrote:
> >
> ><snip>
> >
> >> >There's a controversial Doctor Who episode where
> >> >the Doctor uses a cricket ball; it bounces off the
> >> >hull and he catches it. That part is okay...
> >> >but he is /outside/ the spaceship.
> >>
> >> Hm, I don't think I've seen that one. Can you remember the
> >> title? Which Doctor it was?
> >
> >Definitely Peter Davison.
>
> Yes, I rather suspected it would be he. He's the one who went
> around in cricketing togs all the time. I saw only the first two
> or three of his episodes, because KQED stopped showing them.
>
> >Google tells me it was "Four to Doomsday". The
> >Doctor finds himself floating in space between a spaceship and the
> >TARDIS. He hurls a cricket ball at the spaceship, it bounces back to him
> >and his catching it gives him enough momentum to reach the TARDIS.
>
> And, come to that, throwing the ball in the first place would
> have given him some momentum away from it.

More than he'd get from the catch (barring some 'force field' effect which pushes it away from the ship faster than it comes in)
Kevrob
2018-06-26 17:18:49 UTC
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On Tuesday, June 26, 2018 at 12:48:28 AM UTC-4, ***@gmail.com wrote:

> > And, come to that, throwing the ball in the first place would
> > have given him some momentum away from it.
>
> More than he'd get from the catch (barring some 'force field' effect which pushes it away from the ship faster than it comes in)

Throwing a ball against a wall and fielding it is a drill that young
baseball players can practice on their own. In a gravity well, you
have to throw it very hard to have it return on the fly, and it won't
travel all the way back to you. What one usually does is aim low on the
wall, and the rebound will be a ground ball. Throw it other than straight
on, and you'll have to move to your left or right to field it, which is
the point of the drill. When the ball caroms one way or the other,
it imitates a ball batted other than right at you, and you have to
scramble to field it.

Pitching or bowling a ball in space and having it return to you would be
a neat trick. The ball has to rebound to the spot you will be in after
your relative motion changes by the act of throwing it in the first place,
as I understand it. Granted, Time Lords may be able to do orbital mechanics
like that in their heads, but unless one is tethered to a ship or wielding
a SAFER-type jetpacks or equivalent, one wouldn't be able to do much to
"get in front of the ball," as my coach-father would have instructed.

Kevin R
Joseph Nebus
2018-06-26 20:24:51 UTC
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In <06382cab-4c34-45d6-a355-***@googlegroups.com> ***@gmail.com writes:

>On Tuesday, June 26, 2018 at 2:30:04 PM UTC+10, Dorothy J Heydt wrote:

>> And, come to that, throwing the ball in the first place would
>> have given him some momentum away from it.

>More than he'd get from the catch (barring some 'force field' effect which pushes it away from the ship faster than it comes in)

Unless the spaceship's moving in The Doctor's general direction.
(Try bouncing a tennis ball off a slow-moving car for a demonstration.)

I mean, the practical problems of getting this to work are huge,
but we are talking The Doctor here. He can work it out.

(Remembering now the ancient argument about whether one of
Mr Incredible's powers is super-aiming.)



--
Joseph Nebus
Math: Reading the Comics: Friday the 13th Edition? https://wp.me/p1RYhY-1nL
Humor: Comfort Disasters https://wp.me/p37lb5-244
--------------------------------------------------------+---------------------
Ted Nolan <tednolan>
2018-06-26 21:31:06 UTC
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In article <pgu7ej$q1s$***@reader1.panix.com>,
Joseph Nebus <nebusj-@-rpi-.edu> wrote:
>In <06382cab-4c34-45d6-a355-***@googlegroups.com>
>***@gmail.com writes:
>
>
> I mean, the practical problems of getting this to work are huge,
>but we are talking The Doctor here. He can work it out.
>

Try to see it his way!
--
------
columbiaclosings.com
What's not in Columbia anymore..
Kevrob
2018-06-26 22:36:42 UTC
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On Tuesday, June 26, 2018 at 5:31:10 PM UTC-4, Ted Nolan <tednolan> wrote:
> In article <pgu7ej$q1s$***@reader1.panix.com>,
> Joseph Nebus <nebusj-@-rpi-.edu> wrote:
> >In <06382cab-4c34-45d6-a355-***@googlegroups.com>
> >***@gmail.com writes:
> >
> >
> > I mean, the practical problems of getting this to work are huge,
> >but we are talking The Doctor here. He can work it out.
> >
>
> Try to see it his way!

"Life is very short, and there's no time..." just doesn't seem
very Gallifreyan. :)

Kevin R
Nyrath
2018-06-25 23:42:09 UTC
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> It's from ACC's *The Sands of Mars*. One of the crew is describing an embarrassing moment when he found himself stranded in mid-air in the zero-g section, and using his underwear as reaction mass. Unfortunately the Director was showing his wife around the station, hence the man's change of jobs.

That's it! Thank you so much!
Ted Nolan <tednolan>
2018-06-25 23:52:22 UTC
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In article <560b392b-4771-4d15-a75f-***@googlegroups.com>,
Nyrath <***@gmail.com> wrote:
>> It's from ACC's *The Sands of Mars*. One of the crew is describing an
>embarrassing moment when he found himself stranded in mid-air in the
>zero-g section, and using his underwear as reaction mass. Unfortunately
>the Director was showing his wife around the station, hence the man's
>change of jobs.
>
>That's it! Thank you so much!

Could you propel yourself by directed exhalation? (Maybe if you turned your
head the opposite way to inhale?)

Of course I presume there was air circulation anyway, else people would
suffocate in CO2 pools, but I suppose that would take too long to get wafted
to an intake vent.
--
------
columbiaclosings.com
What's not in Columbia anymore..
m***@gmail.com
2018-06-26 17:15:19 UTC
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On Monday, June 25, 2018 at 5:15:05 PM UTC+1, Nyrath wrote:
> I am pretty sure this is an old short story by Arthur C. Clark or Robert Heinlein.
>
> There was a scene on an early model space station. One of the construction crew relates an embarrassing story. At that time the station had not spun up to create artificial gravity so everything was in free fall. The man had somehow managed to get himself stranded in the middle of a room, with no way to move to within grabbing distance of a wall hand-hold.
>
> He figures the only thing to do is to throw an object away and use the recoil to propel himself towards a wall. Unfortunately he had just woken up so is only dressed in his underwear. He has to throw that away since that is the only reaction mass available.
>
> The embarrassing part was of course that was the day the station was entertaining visiting VIPs who were inspecting the progress. Who were annoyed at the nude man frantically scrambling away down the corridor.
>
> Does this story sound familiar?
m***@gmail.com
2018-06-26 17:19:15 UTC
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The bit I find most problematic is exactly how he came to be stranded mid-air in the first place.

Whatever force lifted him off the floor must have given him some momentum, and I'd have thought he would just keep drifting (even if slowly) until he reached the ceiling or the opposite wall.

Mike Stone, Peterborough, England.

Always drink upriver from the herd.
Peter Trei
2018-06-26 17:42:34 UTC
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On Tuesday, June 26, 2018 at 1:19:17 PM UTC-4, ***@gmail.com wrote:
> The bit I find most problematic is exactly how he came to be stranded mid-air in the first place.
>
> Whatever force lifted him off the floor must have given him some momentum, and I'd have thought he would just keep drifting (even if slowly) until he reached the ceiling or the opposite wall.

Perhaps he tossed something without thinking, and it left him at zero velocity.
Perhaps his crewmates played a prank on him while sleeping.

I find it improbable that ventilation air flow wouldn't move him to a wall
fairly quickly.

He also had other options.
1. Look up at your navel. Inhale.
2. Look up at your zenith. Blow out hard.
Repeat step 1 & 2.

The difficulty is getting the vector of thrust to be as close to
your center of gravity (somewhere inside the small of your back)
as possible.

Note that if he can also reorientate himself by 'milling' with his arms,
or hulahooping his legs and torso.


pt
Dimensional Traveler
2018-06-26 17:55:17 UTC
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On 6/26/2018 10:19 AM, ***@gmail.com wrote:
> The bit I find most problematic is exactly how he came to be stranded mid-air in the first place.
>
> Whatever force lifted him off the floor must have given him some momentum, and I'd have thought he would just keep drifting (even if slowly) until he reached the ceiling or the opposite wall.
>
Since he was inside the station and able to remove his underwear to
throw, presumably there was atmosphere around him. Air resistance would
slow him to a hover given enough space. (And would also work against
him as he thrust-coasted himself to a surface.)

--
Inquiring minds want to know while minds with a self-preservation
instinct are running screaming.
Joseph Nebus
2018-06-26 20:33:47 UTC
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In <pgtult$3sf$***@dont-email.me> Dimensional Traveler <***@sonic.net> writes:

>Since he was inside the station and able to remove his underwear to
>throw, presumably there was atmosphere around him. Air resistance would
>slow him to a hover given enough space. (And would also work against
>him as he thrust-coasted himself to a surface.)

Presumably, although it would take a heck of a big station and
extremely lucky drifting out into the empty spaces to have happen. The
Skylab workshop had a firepole running down its center, in part to make
sure astronauts couldn't be hopelessly out of reach of *something*, and
that got taken out because it turned out if you could get to the middle
of the lab, you had enough momentum to get to the far wall.

(The pole was also meant to help moving from 'top' to 'bottom'
of the lab, but that turned out to be easy enough to do anyway.)

Not saying it's impossible, but it's one of those things like
vacuum welding that turn out not to be such a big deal.

--
Joseph Nebus
Math: Reading the Comics: Friday the 13th Edition? https://wp.me/p1RYhY-1nL
Humor: Comfort Disasters https://wp.me/p37lb5-244
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