Space – Fact Check-Video of NASA astronaut ‘dropping’ a ball does not prove space travel is being ‘faked’
A video allegedly showing a ball dropping due to gravity while astronauts are in the International Space Station is not evidence that space travel is being “faked”, as some users online claim. The full video shows that the ball does indeed float around and that it just happened to float down in the short, isolated segment being shared on social media.
Examples of such posts can be seen here and here .
The video shows five astronauts with the one on the far right holding a microphone and what appears to be a ball. While the astronaut speaks, he lets go of the ball and it seems to fall downwards and out of view. Some of the other astronauts try to grab for it.
The description on one post reads: “NASA drops the ball. With such an “astronomical” budget, they could’ve at least bought some helium. Why do deceiving cretins always hold public purse strings?”
The clip comes from a longer video posted on NASA’s YouTube page here , on April 22, 2021.
According to the description, NASA astronauts Mike Hopkins, Shannon Walker, Victor Glover, Mark Vandehei and Soichi Noguchi of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency were livestreaming a question and answer session with singer-songwriter Shawn Mendes for Earth Day.
At the 18:30 mark, the clip from the posts can be seen. However, other parts of the video show that there is a lack of gravity.
At around 18:53 the ball can be seen moving upward again, apparently unaided.
At the 16:10 mark, Noguchi reaches behind Walker to retrieve the ball, which at closer inspection appears to be an inflatable globe. Noguchi then releases the globe, which floats between them.
Throughout the video, Walker’s hair, the microphone, and the shirts of the astronauts can be observed ‘defying’ gravity.
NASA explains gravity in space at the International Space Station in detail here .
Other videos from the station can be seen here and here .
NASA did not immediately return Reuters request for comment.
Missing context. The clip has been edited to appear as if the ball falls due to gravity. The full video shows the ball floating around among the astronauts in the International Space Station.
This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our fact-checking work here .