Zero-G flight enjoyed by Stephen Hawking and TR’s Garriott

Stephen Hawking went on a zero-gravity flight - Image 1"Ladies And Gentlemen, We Are Floating In Space" from the band Spiritualized should have been the perfect theme song for one of the world's leading theoretical physicists Stephen Hawking and Tabula Rasa's Richard Garriott as the two and a handful of others soared through a zero-gravity flight last Thursday.

The momentous event for Hawking (he's been in his wheel chair for four decades now because of ALS) took place inside the cabin of a modified 727 over the Atlantic Ocean off Cape Canaveral. The flight took a total of eight parabolas - the same flight technique astronauts experienced during weightless space environment preparations.

Speaking of which, Richard Garriott mentioned that they only planned for six parabolas but Hawking was grinning widely and seen as really having a great time. Garriott, who is the son of former NASA astronaut Owen Garriott, added, "six parabolas really was the intended cutoff point. But he was having so much fun, we went for two more, and then we thought we'd better quit while we're ahead."

Aside from the obvious reason that Hawking wanted to get out of his wheel chair, he explained that he joined the flight because he believes that the future of man lies outside of this endangered world. He commented,

I believe that life on Earth is at an ever-increasing risk of being wiped out by a disaster such as sudden global warming, nuclear war, a genetically-engineered virus or other dangers, I think the human race has no future if it doesn't go into space. I therefore want to encourage public interest in space.


Hawking was accompanied by several people during the flight including four physicians, two nurses, two coaches, and two dozen other friends. The famed physicist announced plans for another zero-gravity flight from NASA's Kennedy Space Center to celebrate his 65th birthday in January.

Via Florida Today

Stephen Hawking went on a zero-gravity flight - Image 1"Ladies And Gentlemen, We Are Floating In Space" from the band Spiritualized should have been the perfect theme song for one of the world's leading theoretical physicists Stephen Hawking and Tabula Rasa's Richard Garriott as the two and a handful of others soared through a zero-gravity flight last Thursday.

The momentous event for Hawking (he's been in his wheel chair for four decades now because of ALS) took place inside the cabin of a modified 727 over the Atlantic Ocean off Cape Canaveral. The flight took a total of eight parabolas - the same flight technique astronauts experienced during weightless space environment preparations.

Speaking of which, Richard Garriott mentioned that they only planned for six parabolas but Hawking was grinning widely and seen as really having a great time. Garriott, who is the son of former NASA astronaut Owen Garriott, added, "six parabolas really was the intended cutoff point. But he was having so much fun, we went for two more, and then we thought we'd better quit while we're ahead."

Aside from the obvious reason that Hawking wanted to get out of his wheel chair, he explained that he joined the flight because he believes that the future of man lies outside of this endangered world. He commented,

I believe that life on Earth is at an ever-increasing risk of being wiped out by a disaster such as sudden global warming, nuclear war, a genetically-engineered virus or other dangers, I think the human race has no future if it doesn't go into space. I therefore want to encourage public interest in space.


Hawking was accompanied by several people during the flight including four physicians, two nurses, two coaches, and two dozen other friends. The famed physicist announced plans for another zero-gravity flight from NASA's Kennedy Space Center to celebrate his 65th birthday in January.

Via Florida Today