First music video recorded in space? Brought to you by our favourite tweeting astronaut
Commander Chris Hadfield leaves the International Space Station, with a fitting tribute
Our favourite tweeting astronaut came down to earth on Monday, leaving the International Space Station where he's been living for the past five months with a fitting tribute: a rendition of David Bowie's Space Oddity.
The clip, which could be the first music video filmed in space, was released by the astronaut on Sunday, days before the Soyuz space capsule carrying Colonel Chris Hadfield and his two companions, Nasa astronaut Tom Marshburn and Russian cosmonaut Roman Romanenko, touched down in Kazakstan.
The trio have been working onboard the space station for 144 days. Their experiments could "lead to improvements in the shelf-life of household products, food and medicine", said Nasa, the US space agency.
Their departure marks the end of the 35th expedition to the space station, which for Hadfield, had another mission besides science -- to show the world the day-to-day life of an astronaut.
"Dad wanted a way to help people connect with the real side of what an astronaut's life is - not just the glamour and science," Evan Hadfield, the colonel's 28-year-old son who manages his father's Facebook, Tumblr and Google+ sites, told the Guardian in February.
Since boarding the ISS in December, the colonel has been beaming back images of Australian wildfires, the green tinges of the norther lights above Britain and the spidery webs of Beijing's streetlights, as well as answering questions sent to him via Reddit and Twitter.
For one of his last transmissions, Hadfield's voice and guitar solos were recorded from the station, although the backing track was compiled by a team on earth.
On reflecting on his mission, Hadfield said:
"Who'd have thought that five months away from the planet would make you feel closer to people? Not closer because I miss them — just closer because seeing this [experience] this way and being able to share it through all the media that we've used has allowed me to get a direct reflection back immediately from so many people. ... It makes me feel like I'm actually with people more, that we're having a conversation. That this experience is not individual, but it's shared and it's worldwide."
The 36th mission will be lead by Russian cosmonaut Pavel Vinogradov.