Discovery's manifest includes ponytail

Dec 22, 2006

U.S. astronaut Sunita Williams, assigned to the International Space Station, sent a present home with the Discovery space shuttle crew -- a ponytail.

Williams' tresses were ferried back to Earth, where they will become a wig for a child suffering hair loss either from chemotherapy or a medical condition, USA Today said.

Williams earlier this month was shuttled to the ISS, where she'll live for six months. At the space station, astronaut Joan Higginbotham snipped the hair that hung down Williams' back.

"We're so excited," says Madonna Coffman, president of Locks of Love, which will receive Williams' hair. She said the donation "will bring in families who may not have known about us."

Williams grew her hair for months in anticipation of donating it, her mother, Bonnie Pandya, told USA Today.

Long hair can be problematic in the space station, which has no gravity to keep it in place. Cutting hair also can be tricky, the newspaper noted. Higginbotham used clippers attached to a hose connected to the station's vacuum system.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Comet dust—planet Mercury's 'invisible paint'

Related Stories

NASA's OPALS to beam data from space via laser

Jul 11, 2013

(Phys.org) —NASA will use the International Space Station to test a new communications technology that could dramatically improve spacecraft communications, enhance commercial missions and strengthen transmission ...

Space station rarity: Two women on long-term crew

Nov 21, 2014

For the 21st-century spacewoman, gender is a subject often best ignored. After years of training for their first space mission, the last thing Samantha Cristoforetti and Elana Serova want to dwell on is the ...

Russian rocket engines suspected in launch blast

Oct 29, 2014

Crews searched for scorched wreckage along the Virginia coast Wednesday in hopes of determining why an unmanned commercial rocket exploded in a blow to NASA's strategy of using private companies to send supplies ...

Recommended for you

Comet dust—planet Mercury's 'invisible paint'

2 hours ago

A team of scientists has a new explanation for the planet Mercury's dark, barely reflective surface. In a paper published in Nature Geoscience, the researchers suggest that a steady dusting of carbon from p ...

It's 'full spin ahead' for NASA soil moisture mapper

5 hours ago

The 20-foot (6-meter) "golden lasso" reflector antenna atop NASA's new Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) observatory is now ready to wrangle up high-resolution global soil moisture data, following the successful ...

What drives the solar cycle?

5 hours ago

You can be thankful that we bask in the glow of a relatively placid star. Currently about halfway along its 10 billion year career on the Main Sequence, our sun fuses hydrogen into helium in a battle against ...

MESSENGER completes 4,000th orbit of Mercury

5 hours ago

On March 25, the MESSENGER spacecraft completed its 4,000th orbit of Mercury, and the lowest point in its orbit continues to move closer to the planet than ever before. The orbital phase of the MESSENGER ...

ESA recovers IXV spaceplane

6 hours ago

ESA's recovered IXV spaceplane arrived at the Port of Livorno in Italy yesterday and is set to be taken to Turin for final analysis.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.