MIT alumnus Timothy "TJ" Creamer SM '92 became the first astronaut to utilize a new Internet connection to tweet live from space on Jan. 22.
"Hello Twitterverse! We r now LIVE tweeting from the International Space Station—the 1st live tweet from Space! :) More soon, send your ?s" was the Twitter message posted by Creamer.
The message was made possible by a new system called the Crew Support
Local Area Network, which allows astronauts aboard the International
Space Station (ISS) to access the Internet through existing
Previously, tweets from space were e-mailed to Mission Control in Houston and then posted to astronauts' Twitter accounts. Although astronauts had access to e-mail, videoconferencing, and the ability to make Internet protocol phone calls, they could not previously access the Internet from space.
Creamer was launched aboard the Russian Soyuz TMA-17 spacecraft from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Dec. 20, 2009, and docked with the ISS two days later. Creamer will return to Earth aboard a Soyuz spacecraft in May 2010 after spending six months in space.
His Twitter address is Astro_TJ.
Creamer's flight aboard the International Space Station represents
an exciting start to what promises to be a big year in space for MIT. In February, Creamer will be joined by two colleagues with MIT backgrounds.
Find out what else alumni are up to in space on Slice of MIT in this article by John Tylko '79.