American astronaut Scott Kelly and his Russian colleague Mikhail Kornienko are about to complete their hit 340-day mission aboard the International Space Station.
In order to mark the special occasion, Kelly released a quirky video in which he can be seen playing pingpong with a droplet of water.
Here’s how it works: Two hydrophobic paddles — which repel water — covered with Teflon are used for hitting as microgravity in space forms a droplet of water into a sphere or ball-like shape.
Earlier this week, Kelly witnessed an orange zinnia growing in the ISS’ zero-gravity vegetable garden. He claimed it was the first-ever flower to grow and bloom in space. Up until then, scientists were only able to grow romaine lettuce and rocket.
However, it later turned out Kelly had been a little too over-enthusiastic about his discovery. While his zinnia was the first of its kind to bloom in space, it wasn’t the first ever flower to have grown there.
In 2012, another American astronaut Don Pettit successfully grew a sunflower aboard the ISS. In fact, to be precise, several vegetables have flowered on the station for years now.
Kelly and Kornienko were sent in space as part of an experiment on the long-term effects of zero gravity on the body. They are expected to return to Earth in early March.