back to article Booze in SPAAAACE! Brit rocket boffin preps bold stratobeer mission

A British rocket scientist with a sideline in High Altitude Ballooning (HAB) tomfoolery will tomorrow push the envelope of space endeavour by attempting to send a pint of London Pride bitter into the stratosphere. When he's not boffining it up down at European Astrotech, Chris Smith can be found propping up the bar of his …

  1. Pete 2

    A dream come true

    It's raining beer (and 'Pride, too!)

  2. Dave Bell

    It sounds as though Chris has his own copy of "Ignition" by John D. Clark.

    1. John Sager

      Ignition

      For us formerly teenage pyromaniacs, this is a classic text on how it *should* be done...

      1. phuzz Silver badge
        Flame

        Re: Ignition

        For those who've not had the pleasure yet:

        http://library.sciencemadness.org/library/books/ignition.pdf

        The section on Chlorine tri-fluoride is particularly quotable.

  3. Snivelling Wretch

    You say "unsymmetrical", I say "asymmetrical"...

    ...or do these technically mean different things?

    1. brooxta

      Re: You say "unsymmetrical", I say "asymmetrical"...

      You could ask the in-laws by loud hailer from the recommended safe distance of five hundred metres while they perform the necessary close inspection (by ingestion) to distinguish the two.

      1. Lester Haines (Written by Reg staff) Gold badge

        Re: Re: You say "unsymmetrical", I say "asymmetrical"...

        Absolutely. Let us know the result.

    2. Snivelling Wretch

      Re: You say "unsymmetrical", I say "asymmetrical"...

      I fear I may have been misunderstood. Presumably, if there is unsymmetrical dimethylhydrazine, there is also symmetrical dimethylhydrazine (or simply dimethylhydrazine, one supposes). I'm guessing these two have very different chemical properties, particularly when it comes to relieving oneself of tiresome relations.

      However, why is it called "unsymmetrical" and not "asymmetrical"? Or is there a technical/chemical difference hidden in this unusual nomenclature?

      1. phuzz Silver badge
        Boffin

        Re: You say "unsymmetrical", I say "asymmetrical"...

        There will be a particular reason for the nomenclature, but I'm not a chemist so I'm not sure what it is. however, a quick look at wikipedia shows that unsymmetrical dimethylhydrazine, and it's symmetrical cousin have different structures:

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unsymmetrical_dimethylhydrazine

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Symmetrical_dimethylhydrazine

        Apparently the only use for the symmetrical stuff is inducing colon cancers in experimental animals, which I think we can all agree is far less fun than using the unsymmetrical stuff in rocket fuel.

  4. NorthernCoder
    Pint

    Alcohol abuse!

    ...and it's not even pub o'clock yet!

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

  5. RainForestGuppy

    I suppose sending a pint London Pride into space is better than drinking it. It's definitely not a great ale, only to be drunk when ever other beer* has run out

    1. Sebastian Brosig
      Pint

      I beg to differ

      RainForestGuppy:

      While in general I would assert that London has absolutely nothing to recommend itself and the world would be a better place without it, I find "London Pride" beer quite tasty.

      De gustibis non est dispuitandum

      1. Michael Dunn
        Headmaster

        Re: I beg to differ @ Sebastian BBrosig

        Tacitus, and most classical Latinists, would not have needed the ¨est.¨

    2. Peter Mount
      Pint

      sort of true & false

      Sadly most places don't know how to keep it right (or just don't bother) but there's plenty of places that do & there it's pretty good.

      I'd say you've been unfortunate not to find one of those pubs yet.

    3. Cornholio
      Pint

      Hmm

      I've never met a Fuller's that I didn't like.

      1. Martin Budden Bronze badge
        Pint

        Re: Hmm

        In a couple of months I'll be meeting the Fullers CEO and asking him about hints for doing a home-brew version of ESB. I'm very excited!

    4. The First Dave

      @Article: "a small version of a pint glass"

      Come on! WTF does that mean, exactly? Does it mean a half-pint glass, which is often made in the same shape as common pint glasses, and indeed, does it really mean "glass", or are we actually talking about plastic rubbish?

  6. Michael H.F. Wilkinson Silver badge
    Pint

    Now that is REALLY raising a glass

    Mine never reach the stratosphere, but on the way back, they always reach my mouth

    Never got the hang of quaffing, it seems

  7. Dabooka
    Coat

    "Can you just top that up please?"

    A pint of London Pride.

    A sealable 530ml container.

    I dread to think what the local branch of CAMRA will make of that, let alone Trading Standards.

  8. Marketing Hack Silver badge
    Alien

    But what do we surmise...

    When beer bottle returns to earth empty, and maybe with a small tip on the side?

  9. Dodgy Geezer Silver badge

    I don't want to rain on the parade....

    ...but has he considered the effect on a standard beer bottle of freezing it at -50 to -60 C?

    Ice expands. I would expect the liquid to push the top off at some point, or maybe crack the bottle...

  10. Paul Hovnanian Silver badge

    What's the idea here? To put the pint on sale (suitably marked up) at the local pub after re-entry, certified as having being in space? I can see a sideline for Virgin Galactic here. Or even LOHAN, if you can figure a way for her to return something more than the empty.

  11. slear

    Idea not new, look at the

    Sicilian Space Program

    http://www.vivisicilia.it/2014/02/16/sicilian-space-program-lancio-di-un-cannolo-siciliano-nello-spazio/

  12. lluvpostingcomments

    Will he be sending up any pork scratchings too?

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