For almost 20 years, the International Space Station has been conducting invaluable research in countless scientific fields, from the effects of microgravity on the human body to monitoring water quality from space.
But an increasing number of corporations are sending their products to the cramped confines of the space research lab, often with inconsequential or pointless goals, in an apparent bid for friendly PR.
It all begs the question: don’t we already have enough space junk orbiting our planet?
NASA has itself to blame. In June, the space agency announced that it will officially allow regular citizens to board the Space Station, alongside commercial and marketing activities.
In the latest attempt, Adidas sent a soccer ball to the ISS, ostensibly to test how air resistance affects their spin. In future ISS-based experiments, Adidas says it wants to find ways to improve the cushioning of its footwear — truly the pinnacle of space science.
Adidas isn’t the only brand slinging their wares to the space station. On Monday, Futurism reported on a startup that plans to age red wine on the ISS — and no, the astronauts won’t even get to crack a bottle.
Even more startups are sending their crap into space. An outfit called Space Roasters even claims it’s working on specially designed pods that’ll roast coffee beans as they re-enter Earth’s atmosphere.
Basically, we’re littering an already-crowded space environment and filling up valuable launch manifests with PR stunts. Knock it off, brands.
READ MORE: Adidas is partnering with the International Space Station to test products in space [CNN Business]
More on ISS experiments: This Startup Is Aging Red Wine on the International Space Station