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Granted, this is a serious problem…
Finally! They’re doing something about all the trash up there.
… at least… at least let him take up parts to build more space stations… or just majorly upgrade the one we have, or… something that’s just sad “oh you can fly into space I DUB THEE THE JANITOR OF THE GRAVITY WELL”
Maybe he will rise to the ocassion like Kurt Hectic, Janitor in MDK 1+2?
Or like Ron Planet, Space Janitor!
Or Elon Musk is going to hire him or Comcast or Verizon or…
I have a feeling that he has a russian accent….you can’t be an astronaut without a russian accent
But the Soviet Union never *had* astronauts. The Soviet Union only had *cosmonauts*.
The title is literally the only difference
But a very important difference.
Might this mean that in LoSRH Russia, there is a superhero named Cosmonomus?
Cosmonova, known for her triangular features.
It’s funny ‘cos it’s a geometry pun.
well someone has to deal with kessler’s syndrome…
I’ve just noticed this dude has a fishbowl space helmet but his hands are bare.
… and he has a zip down the front of his suit.
He needs the air so that he can hear and talk? Also, I think that those are orange-brown gloves.
I think the funnier and therefore probably true option is that it’s mostly just there as a windshield.
He would only encounter solar wind particles if he wandered up close to the poles. That’s what the Aurora Borealis and Aurora Australis are. The Van Allen radiation belt prevents them from coming through anywhere near the equator.
Well, there’s been instances where we’ve been shown a super not having the required secondary powers to keep them safe using their power. He might be able to handle the environment of space, but still need to breathe.
Alternatively, this is just his superhero/occupational uniform and the fishbowl helmet is just for looks so people know he is a space janitor.
I’m a fan of the needs-air-to-use-the-radio explanation, myself. Or he can fly into space but can’t survive in vacuum, and those are just gloves.
These might be bare hands. Hardened skin allows to survive in space without getting hematoma, and comic universe allows air tight fishbowls.
It’s not a fishbowl, it’s a water bubble. He’s from Atlantis
Those are gloves. They’re a different color than his face is.
And that may be accurate. Human skin can stand up to a fair amount of vacuum (maybe not a full atmosphere, but most of one). It’s the lungs and soft tissues that have major problems. Combined with hypoxia, of course. So, if his flight abilities includes any additional toughness, he may need oxygen to breathe, but not pressure to survive.
How much are they paying that guy, again?
Although, this is genuinely a good service he can perform. The amount of shit we’ve put in orbit, from our very dirty, early launches, is slightly hazardous. He can get around much more easily than a spaceship, so if he can spot stuff from far enough away …
He’s minimum wage, which you’d think would be a turn-off, but as he’s working for the government, he’s literally raking in those travel expenses!
He travels into space under his own power, so the travel expenses are … lunch?
Will work for food?
I mean home-to-duty/duty-to-duty travel reimbursement for own/public transport. When I worked for the government, it was something like 20p per mile (distance calculated, not distance actually travelled: no extras for detours), with a marginal decrease to something like 15p for journeys beyond something like 100 miles (I never went that far, so didn’t apply to me).
Or doesn’t it work that way in the US government?
You can deduct a standard per-mile expense from your federal taxes. The actual reimbursement can vary from company to company.
I’m not sure if there’s a standard compensation amount for all governmental employees. Given the cluster-fuck of variance that we have from state-to-state and county-to-county, over here, I wouldn’t be surprised if the number varied wildly by region and job.
Problem is that it is only a few miles straight up.
Granted, doing those miles is tough, but it isn’t all that far.
He’d want to be more than bullet proof considering the speed of some of that garbage
This does seem to be a rather less common trait of Shitropolis heroes, so he might be able to make a little more, due to rarity value.
This is an extremly important job actually.
Heh, first thing I thiught about after seeing the last panel was an Planetes – it’s a hard SF series exactly about space janitors.
Don’t forget MST3K, he just need two robots and a collection of B-movies.
Yeah Planetes, that’s what I was reminded of as well, very nice manga.
I figured that’s what he was whistling.
Not the Space Quest games by Sierra?
Is anybody else getting an ad for an online strategy MMO repeatedly popping up over the middle panel of the comic?
Nope. Some hiccup in your browser, perhaps? It could be something specific to that ad which is causing it to be improperly rendered by your browser, I suppose.
But, spaceman! I never wanted you to go
It’s all fun and games until a paint-chip traveling at Mach 5 hits you.
Way faster than mach 5. The International Space Station orbits at a velocity of 4.76 miles/sec. That’s a little over mach 22 … or at least it would be, if there was a speed of sound up there.
Speed of sound, therefore Mach 1, differs with a location’s altitude and the state of the medium (i.e. temperature, density, pressure, and fluid velocity) at that location.
It’s a common misconception that Mach 1 is always around 340 m/s (761 mph). Even the wikipedia entry for Mach 1 is confusing, as it explains the speed of sound changes depending on the environment, that Mach 1 depends on the speed of sound, then lists a table of Mach ranges with related speeds that are only valid at “standard sea level”.
There’s the functional usage of the term, though, which is based upon the speed of sound at sea level, with an average air-density. For example, when the military/CIA calculates how fast a CF-71 Blackbird is going, stated in terms of mach-whatever, they don’t adjust for the altitude at which it’s actually flying.
In the case under consideration, there can be no mach-scale. Sound doesn’t really travel, at that altitude.
Exactly. The density of the medium is so low there’s no effective longitudinal propagation.
Also, there’s the issue of airspeed v groundspeed. I remember a few years ago, a newspaper reported a transatlantic flight travelled faster than the speed of sound, simply because its distance / duration was slightly greater than than the speed of sound. In actuality, the aircraft had travelled in the same direction as the airflow, so its airspeed was nominally subsonic.
We got what Mongoose meant, though. Relative velocity of the probable impacts on a body staying in a roughly geo-synchronous position. Supers in space wouldn’t have to establish an orbit, since their power of flight is essentially magical and infinitely powered, as long as they have whatever energy source grants them their powers, assuming there is one.
Oh, and I meant that people don’t adjust for the difference in air density which causes a difference in the speed of sound at the different altitudes. They calculate how fast sound moves at sea level with average air density, etc., and then they use that as the standard measurement of mach-whatever. I imagine that the instruments show the speed traveling through the actual air, at the current altitude, rather than measuring the distance traveled relative to the ground.
Sorry, I said that wrong.
Yes, some people insist on doing bull.
I wonder if they pay him by the mile? (miles travelled, not miles cleaned)
I hope so. Otherwise any country or company that wants to start up a cheap space program will try to hire him away.
The miles cleaned isn’t enough to worry about. How many miles would you add up if you lined up all of the paint chips and astronaut gloves that he found up there?
He could probably get a good recycling fee from all of the Russian satellites he recovers. “What? That thing was just lying there on the side of the orbital track. It looked like someone had just thrown it away.”
However much they’re paying, it’s not enough. The scrap metal value of that garbage he’s picking up is likely more than minimum wage, and that doesn’t even factor in what he COULD be making if he just headed over to the asteroid belt and started prospecting. Gold, diamonds, rare-earth metals, even straight iron ore, just sitting there!
Or keep the rubbish in orbit and build a space station… wait.
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