Missionary impossible? Having sex in space would be seriously hard

Apparently no two astronauts have ever bumped uglies beyond the confines of Mother Earth. Here's are some of the reasons why

14 July 2019 - 00:09
Space: the final sex frontier.
Space: the final sex frontier.
Image: 123RF/NATALIA LUKIYANOVA

Ever since time was measured by how many rays of sunlight punctured the sleepy darkness of your cave, humans have enjoyed sex in odd locales.

Presumably the first of our ancestors to try to spice up their love lives with an off-site booty call did so because they were tired of all the prying Phindiles passing judgment on their technique. They stumbled on something rather exciting, and the practice spread like wildfire.

A quick search of your local porn provider will show you that people have gotten to "know" each other just about anywhere you can think of, from inside a moving Tesla to out in the desert. Hell, people have even made the double-backed beast in Antarctica. So where is left? In what, if any, virgin environment can one become a sexy time pioneer?

Space.

It's been a shade under 50 years since two dudes hopped out of their module and stepped on the moon for the first time. Since then there has been a more or less constant human presence off Earth. Given that space missions generally take longer than a Thabo Mbeki speech and are likely to run even longer as we get closer to our goal of colonising other planets, people have justifiably wondered if anyone has bumped uglies beyond the confines of Mother Earth's gravitational embrace.

Officially the answer is no. According to Vice.com and a number of other sources, there have been no reports of interstellar hanky panky from any space stations. The idea that a group of adults confined together for months at a time would not indulge in some kind of amorous congress may be difficult to swallow, but makes sense once you think about it. Sex in space is hard.

Speaking to Vice.com, Paul Root Wolpe, a senior bioethicist at Nasa, said: "A lot of people think that sex in microgravity will be great because by losing gravity you can move in ways you can't terrestrially."

It turns out that the horizontal tango needs gravity as much as Hugh Hefner needed Viagra

But the scientists who have thought about this aren't so sure at all. It turns out that the horizontal tango needs gravity as much as Hugh Hefner needed Viagra.

"One of the things that gravity helps us to do is stay together, so sex in microgravity might actually be more difficult because you're going to have to make sure you're always holding each other so that you don't drift apart," said Wolpe.

It turns out that Newton's whole falling-apple discovery also plays a crucial role in stiffening a man's resolve, as astronauts tend to have decreased blood pressure out in the cosmos. Maintaining a firm demeanour may prove a little trickier than usual.

The late novelist Vanna Bonta tried to overcome some of these issues by creating the 2suit, a two-person space romper that allows for celestial bumping and grinding, but so far the tests have been unsatisfying.

As things stand, you are as likely to be able to do some genital jockeying in space as you are boot-knocking with Beyoncé. But humans are nothing if not resourceful. Already Pornhub has tried (and failed) to get an intergalactic blue movie funded, and it is just a matter of time before some Bond villain masquerading as a Russian billionaire funds serious research into the matter. Until then we can only let the tension build and eagerly await the release of the news that space sex's Edmund Hillary has finally come. 


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