Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Space Cowboys? Russian Cosmonauts Are Packing More Than Tang

The Daily Mail has a story today, citing a blog called The Appendix, about the Cosmonaut Survival Kit. The kit includes a combination gun with both shotgun and rifle barrels.

The kit included the Soviet TP-82, a special combination gun with a detachable machete created for hunting, firing distress beacons and self-defence.

American astronauts who trained as part of the Soyuz spacecraft crews for the International Space Station in the 90s also had to learn how to use the firearm.

Appendix recalls how astronaut Jim Voss learned to use the gun in a mock-up spacecraft in the Black Sea using wine, beer and vodka bottles as target practice.

Reportedly, Russian cosmonauts still carry firearms in space, but now they pack plain old Makarov service pistols.

So, then, 2001: A Space Odyssey might have gone differently if Russians had manned that spacecraft.

"Open the pod bay doors, HAL"

"I'm sorry, Dave. I'm afraid I can't do that."

"Don't make me use this Makarov, HAL."

"Look Dave, I can see you're really upset about this. I honestly think you ought to sit down calmly, take a stress pill, and think things over."

"Open the pod bay doors NOW, HAL, before I bust a cap in your cyber ass."


James said...

Step over and stand on the Comrade Hal. Very good, this will only take a moment.

Anonymous said...

TSB;James: Now you guys have
Hal upset and he's working with Putin to mess with State! gwb


James said...

Years ago I made it to the Smithsonian Air and Space for a space capsule (US and Soviet) exhibition. Very interesting, some of it pretty funny. One Soviet capsule had printed in 4 languages on the outside that there were real people inside and to get help. Gives you an idea of how confident they were of reentry accuracy. Another Russian one talked about the crew having to stay in the craft for almost two days because of wolves, and were only rescued by farmers. And to think our guys only had to almost swim to Hawaii once.

James said...

Stand on the X Hal, the X!

TSB said...

James: I remember when that Russian crew was lost for two days after re-entry. That was some space program they had back in the USSR! Have you read Red Star in Orbit, a history of their program by a NASA scientist named James Oberg?

James said...

Of course I couldn't resist commentary on this subject from that great Western Philosopher Slim Pickens:


TSB said...

Life imitates art, which is something that happened a lot with that great movie.

Anonymous said...

TSB: Meaning no disrespect to the fine men and women in military intelligence, maybe the reason we don't pay ransom money to ISIS is because whenever we try to get somebody with ransom we get hornswoggled. gwb