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Video: A gorilla chases astronauts around the International Space Station

NASA Scott Kelly gorilla costume
NASA/Scott Kelly/screenshot
Watch out for the space gorilla!
Published Last updated This article is more than 2 years old.

On Tuesday, March 1, US astronaut Scott Kelly returns home after a year aboard the International Space Station (ISS). He traveled 144 million miles around the Earth (paywall). He performed 400 experiments. He posted 700 mesmerizing photos to Instagram.

And then he became a gorilla.

To lighten the mood aboard the ISS—and perhaps, as a way of celebrating his year in space—Kelly recorded himself chasing fellow astronaut Tim Peake around the space station in a gorilla suit. Social media aficionado that he is, Kelly uploaded the video to Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

According to NASA, it costs approximately $10,000 to send one pound of payload into orbit. An adult gorilla costume on Amazon weighs 4.3 pounds. So this is a—roughly—$43,000 prank.

The ISS actually budgets for this sort of thing. Friends and family members of astronauts are allowed to send a certain amount of cargo up to the station, as it’s extremely important to keep morale up in outer space. You try living in a tube hundreds of miles from the planet’s surface.

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