• Question: Can you ride a bike in space?

    Asked by paulmooncatsmyth to Colin, John, Kevin, Shikha, Triona on 12 Nov 2014.
    • Photo: Kevin Motherway

      Kevin Motherway answered on 12 Nov 2014:

      Both Skylab and The International Space Station both had fixed exercise bikes or “ergometers” as they are known. These exercise bikes provide great exercise, but you couldn’t safely cycle a bike in space with one possible exception. Skylab was essentially one big tank made from an upper Stage of a Saturn 5 rocket. It was huge inside, at nearly 7 metres in diameter: they even test flew a jetpack inside Skylab. The astronauts also used to run on the inside of Sklab as when you started running the centrifugal force essentially generated artificial gravity and you could run around all day long in a circle. There’s no reason you couldn’t have ridden a small BMX to do the same thing!

      cuts and paste this link to get to a youtube video:

    • Photo: Shikha Sharma

      Shikha Sharma answered on 15 Nov 2014:

      Hi paulmooncatsmyth,
      To run the bike you need a surface and a strong gravitational pull which will keep the bike on the surface. Without these two we can’t run the in empty space 🙂