Waiting for an Ocean Pickup, Astronauts Made 'Prank Calls'

Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken had a satellite phone after all
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 4, 2020 12:32 PM CDT
Waiting for an Ocean Pickup, Astronauts Made 'Prank Calls'
The SpaceX Crew Dragon Endeavour spacecraft lands with NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley onboard in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Pensacola, Fla., Sunday, Aug. 2, 2020.   (Bill Ingalls/NASA via AP)

When astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken splashed down in the Gulf of Mexico on Sunday, they had time to burn before their pickup boat arrived. Luckily, they had a satellite phone. "Five hours ago we were in a spaceship bobbing around making prank satellite phone calls to whoever we could get ahold of," Hurley said later at a press conference, per CNET. "Which was kind of fun, by the way." So who did they call? At least a few familiar names, according to Space.com. "I received one of these calls at the flight director console," tweeted NASA flight director Anthony Vareha. "It started with an opening line like 'Hi, it's Doug and Bob, and we're in the ocean.' I think my response was, 'Yeah, I can see that.'"

Behnken's wife is a fellow astronaut named Megan McArthur, and she also got a call. "On my phone it said 'Spam Risk.' Glad I answered anyway!" she tweeted. Hurley and Behnken spent 9 weeks in space, and their successful mission sets up a more ambitious launch by SpaceX in September of six crew members to the International Space Station. This one marked the first time a private company launched astronauts into space on a commercial spacecraft, notes Futurism. (More astronauts stories.)

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