Amore Zero-G

By Hari Kunzru, 10 September 1997

Bored? Enter combinations of 'sex' and 'space' into a search engine. The results are a suggestive collection of weird net memes, combining and confusing the scientific and pornographic imaginations.Floating around courtesy of Chuck, a man who describes himself as an adult movie extra and who is proud to own a video of 'cadaver testicle removal', is a document titled 'Experiment 8 Postflight Summary, NASA publication 14-307-1792'.This describes the results of a supposed NASA experiment into the practicalities of "continued marital relations in [a] zero-G orbital environment". NASA denies they have ever conducted human sexual experiments [].

STS-75, the 1996 shuttle mission referred to in the 'Experiment 8' document, was according to the NASA shuttle site the launch of an Italian 'tethered satellite system'. The crew was all male. Regardless of its authenticity, the Experiment 8 document, couched in impeccable techno-bureaucratic language, is a compelling read, clinically detailing the pros and cons of various microgravitational coital positions, including a kind of zero-G sixty nine.

Meanwhile in Japan, many of the same themes are echoed at, a record of (seemingly genuine) zero-G sexual experiments with Medaka fish. Problems with thrusting motions are a theme common to fish and humans. Though this has yet to be experienced as a widespread problem, a technological solution has already been proposed. This is a harness, apparently invented by a New England Sunday school teacher, for allowing participants in zero-G sex to regulate the hip and thigh movements of their partner(s). Meanwhile, the Association of Autonomous Astronauts have proposed a competition, offering a UKP1,000,000 prize to the first privately-funded team to launch a craft into suborbital space and engage in sexual intercourse. Contact the XXX Prize Foundation, BM Jed, London WC1N 3XX.

Hari Kunzru <hari AT>