These days, I’m working on the Microgravity Science Glovebox. No, it’s not where the astronauts keep their maps (don’t they need one? they’re just going around in circles!). It’s one of these:
The glovebox was delivered to the International Space Station in 2002 and has held over 3,500 hours of experiments, which is pretty good considering that for three of those ten years, there was only a two-man crew on ISS. We learned a lot from the glovebox flown on the Space Shuttle and added all the bells and whistles to this one – an airlock, vacuum, venting, purging with inert gas, a coldplate, and power. With the cameras and comm downlink, the astronauts can set up an experiment and leave it to be monitored by the scientists on the ground. It can be held at a negative pressure, which keeps bits from experiments from floating around the crewspace.
So I’ve been looking for an old-fashioned folding map to bring in on Monday as a gag and haven’t found one yet. I think the last one I had for Alabama had Governor Guy Hunt on it. I have a big atlas, but I usually have Mapquest directions printed out, or I have the GPS. Do they still give away state maps at the welcome centers?