“A vacuum is a hell of a lot better than some of the stuff that nature replaces it with.” –Tennessee Williams
The depiction of dying in space — by exposure to its terrifying vacuum — is incredibly varied, from freezing to swelling and bulging to simply exploding.
For this week’s Ask Ethan, we take on the question of Kerrie Pinkney, who wants to know:
[W]ill you explode if exposed to the vacuum of space? I’ve gone down the “water boils in a vacuum then freezes” road, others have gone down the “tried it on a dog and it lived” approach. The movie Gravity shows buddy lifting his helmet and instantly freezing so… how does it work, Ethan?
So, who’s got it right?