Astronauts Playing Real World Katamari Damacy In Space

Illustration for article titled Astronauts Playing Real World Katamari Damacy In Space

I saw this picture yesterday and I just couldn't tell what the hell it was. So I read the caption and it left me even more puzzled:

STS-125 astronaut Andrew Feustel selects his next tool to use while participating in the first of five scheduled spacewalks to perform final hands-on servicing of the Hubble Space Telescope. Feustel and veteran astronaut John Grunsfeld (out of frame) are scheduled to participate in three of those spacewalks.

Illustration for article titled Astronauts Playing Real World Katamari Damacy In Space

Tools? What tools? Can you see any tools in there? I have tried to decipher what tools are those and I just can't identify any single one of them.

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Sure, I wasn't expecting a bunch of Allen keys and Torx screwdrivers to fix the Hubble, but these things look like fake devices from a B-series sci-fi movie. And now that we are at it, can somebody explain to me how can they make any sense of that big mess? Apparently, astronauts just tie their stuff in big balls of junk. Seriously, these guys are amazing. [NASA]

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DISCUSSION

I can see something like a cordless impact wrench...

but the rest of the stuff, looks like... cheap tools I'd find at a discount store, or maybe fake toy tools...actually it looks like a ball of junk.

I remember hearing about a story where nasa couldn't use pens in space.. so they invented a pen that they could use in space. As where in Russia or whatever they just used a pencil.

My point being, while I am all for space exploration and sending astronauts into space, what I am not for is spending in that sense of re-inventing the wheel when one doesn't have to.. What I wonder is how much those.. well I guess I should say that impact type wrench tool.. and the ball of junk cost nasa.

I am sure they could have went to Snap-on or even Mac tools and said, this is what we want "A tool that works in space.. can you guys design tools for use in space?", and I bet that those two private companies would have pulled through.. or at least one of em at a far cheaper cost.

Of course I am just guessing about the origins of the tools above..