Badminton in Space

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Japanese billionaire - Yusaku Maezawa, his business assistant Yozo Hirano, and other space station astronauts play floating Badminton matches in outer space. (photo: ESA/NASA)
Japanese billionaire - Yusaku Maezawa, his business assistant Yozo Hirano, and other space station astronauts play floating Badminton matches in outer space. (photo: ESA/NASA)

International Space Station: When all elite badminton players were competing at the 2021 BWF World Championships that was held in Huelva, Spain, from Dec 12 to Dec 19, 2021, there’s another historic badminton match that was taking place outside of the planet Earth, in the outer space.

The European Space Agency astronaut Matthias Maurer played an outer-space badminton match aboard the International Space Station (ISS) with his crewmates and Japanese billionaire – Yusaku Maezawa alongside his business assistant Yozo Hirano during their short-term stay of 12 days on the ISS.

(Credit: ESA/NASA)



Maezawa and Hirano were launched to space from Baikonur, Kazakhstan at 2:38 a.m. Eastern time (10:38 a.m. local time) on a Russian Soyuz rocket on Dec 8, 2021.


(Credit: ESA/NASA/РОСКОСМОС)

It is not the first time that badminton was played in the ISS. In February of 2008, a group of American astronauts teamed up with Russian cosmonauts and a Japanese astronaut to play a badminton match in the zero-gravity condition.


(Credit: РОСКОСМОС)

After their 12 days in orbit, Roscosmos cosmonaut Alexander Misurkin, Maezawa, and Hirano returned to Earth on the morning of December 20, 2021.

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