In space, no one can hear you scream--because, in the case of the International Space Station (ISS), your voice would be drowned out. Fans, compressors, motors, transformers, pumps and other gear create a literally deafening cacophony hazardous to the health and well-being of the crew. At a NASA quarterly review of the space station program in early February, the noise situation was rated as "bad"--and it's getting worse as more equipment goes up.
For years, station designers were aware that noise could be troublesome, but more serious problems demanded their attention. "Noise was one of those issues that never seemed to get much respect," NASA acoustics engineer Jerry Goodman told a space engineers seminar in Houston last year.
This article was originally published with the title Orbital Shouting.