Astronaut’s bagpipes to be released into space

editorial image
Share this article
2
Have your say

The first ever set of bagpipes to be played in space will be ejected from the craft - due to a lack of space.

The bagpipes, made in Scotland by McCallum’s of Kilmarnock, were ordered by astronaut Kjell Lindgren to honour his colleague Victor Hurst, who passed away last month, aged 48. The astronaut played Amazing Grace on the set.

The plastic pipes cost £450 and were ordered for being “the lightest pipes and could be packed away into the smallest space,” according to Kenny Macleod of McCallum’s.

Mr Lindgren told the manufacturers from the beginning there was a likelihood that the pipes would be ejected into space because of issues involved with storage on the spacecraft.

The set of pipes will then be monitored by NASA, who keep track of all debris above 5cm in size, due to the damage they could cause.

NASA said: “There are more than 20,000 pieces of debris larger than a softball orbiting the Earth.

“They travel at up to 17,500mph, fast enough for a relatively small piece of debris to damage a satellite or a spacecraft.

“There are 500,000 pieces of debris the size of a marble or larger.”

Back to the top of the page