Monday, June 3

Ambassador Of The Overview

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Chris Hadfield posing on the ISS with new telescope.

Chris Hadfield’s stay in the ISS recently made him the most popular and well known astronaut since Neil Armstrong and Yuri Gagarin. His exploits while staying at the International Space Station made him an overnight sensation and permanent Space Ambassador to our planet.

His masterful manipulation of the press while on the ISS brought back more interest in space then the nation has seen in ages. Using social networks to detail his progress and showing incredible photos of Earth from space this Canadian astronaut captured the attention and love of the world.

Chris Hadfield’s stay lasted for five months on the the International Space Station and this mission saw him become the first Canadian to command the orbiting laboratory. This has been his third time in space and the last two times have been on the ISS.

The engineer and former test pilot from Milton, Ontario made his first trip to space in November 1995 when he visited the old Russian Space Station Mir. His second voyage was to the International Space Station in April 2001, when he also performed two space walks.

While Hadfield may be best remembered for his photography, live broadcasts and music from space his main purpose throughout the mission was performing more than 100 science experiments on the human body.

Chris Hadfield is outspoken about Peace and how the Overview Effect has colored his perspective as an astronaut and individual. He speaks of a love for the planet and hope for us all.

On January 2, Hadfield posted a picture of Latakia, Syria, online with the message: “Deceptively calm and beautiful, strife-torn on the shore on the sea. Peaceful from such a distance.”

He appealed for Peace from his perch in the sky, saying; “If people, I think, could see the perspective more clearly… (they would glean) that understanding of the fact that we’re all in this together,” he said.

“The perspective that we are subject to, that we are privileged enough to see directly with our eyes, is one I think would benefit everyone, to go around the world in just slightly over 90 minutes…you see it as one place,” Hadfield told a news conference streamed from the International Space Station.

“And so when we do look down on a place that is currently in great turmoil or strife, it’s hard to reconcile the inherent patience and beauty of the world with the terrible things that we can do to each other as people and can do to the Earth itself,” he said.

“Yes, there’s important territorial issues and important personal issues but at the same time with increased communication and with increased understanding comes  a more global perspective,” he added.

I knew Chris Hadfield was made for great things when in quick time he became a huge Internet sensation. He alone made NASA, the Earth and the ISS more interesting and attainable for everyone and in my opinion has been the best Ambassador of space and the Overview Effect we have could ever have.

From Hang Outs on Google Plus to experiments in space for school children Chris Hadfield single handedly brought space and space exploration back to the front burner of the world’s attention. Where we take it next is up to us but I hope Chris Hadfield has something to say about it all. 

Chris Hadfield recorded an album of his music and made the first music video from space while on the ISS and is now on Terra Firma safe and sound.

"If we imagine the Overview for ourselves, forget our petty differences, self-importance, love of money and understand how fragile our existence has become on this planet we may yet have a chance to fulfill our promise to save the Earth .” ♦Bekkie Sanchez

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