A famous quote from Fallout says, “War never changes.” It is accompanied by death and destruction – visible to the naked eye, even from outer space.
Satellite images obtained by companies such as Maxar Technologies help cover the war drama in Ukraine. On the other hand, this is not surprising, because satellites equipped with powerful cameras can take close-up photos that many people would not even dream of. On the other hand, the conflict in Ukraine can be seen with the naked eye from space. This shows the extent of the damage.
“When you’re in space, you feel at first yet,” said German broadcaster ARD Matthias Maurer, a European Space Agency astronaut who recently completed his 177-day stay aboard the International Space Station.
He was overshadowed by the scale of the war, even though Maurer was more than 400 kilometers above the earth’s surface. The invasion was “visible to the naked eye from space,” adding that he could see “large black plumes of smoke over Mariupol,” a port city that was flattened by Russian forces.
The International Space Station (ISS) moves about 8 km/sec and orbits the Earth every 90 minutes, so astronauts staying there have a good view of Earth. The astronauts saw “horrible things”.
“At the beginning of the war, darkness enveloped the whole country at night. Maurer explained in an interview with ARD that in Kyiv you could see what looked like lightning strikes at night when missiles hit targets in the capital.
The entire crew of the International Space Station, including the Russian cosmonauts, unanimously agreed that “terrible things are happening in Ukraine.” You can see with the naked eye that it is something abnormal. Understanding how hostilities can escalate is beyond that for astronauts.
“A war seen from above is hundreds of times more irrational than a war on the ground. Why don’t we hold on to each other?” asked Maurer.
It is noteworthy that the cosmonauts of Roscosmos have long shown signs of solidarity with their Western colleagues – in March they appeared on the International Space Station in yellow and blue suits corresponding to the colors of the Ukrainian flag, which did not go unnoticed, also by the Russian authorities. Dmitry Rogozin, head of Roscosmos, was not in favor of this initiative, because Russia would “leave the ISS” anyway, and the United States would be able to launch into space “on brooms” because it would no longer be supplied with Soyuz. missiles.
War always seems horrific, but we can only imagine how this devastation contrasts with the beauty of a planet viewed from orbit.
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