Space invaders – in space!


NASA astronaut Scott Kelly and ESA astronaut Tim Peake tested a new augmented-reality project during their mission on the International Space Station that aims to help astronauts work more efficiently by overlaying information and allowing mission control to ‘look over their shoulder’. After two hours of putting Project Sidekick through its paces they came across a hidden game: virtual-reality space invaders! Mission control allowed them a moment of fun.

The special effects were added later and no astronaut (or aliens) were harmed in the making of this video.

Tim explains: “Sidekick creates a virtual-reality world on the International Space Station so we can ‘drop’ markers, procedures or documents in one location and they will still be there if we leave the module to return later. Ground control can come into our virtual world and we can use it for doing tasks together – for example the VR world can point out exactly what switches to flip or which screws to loosen, handles to turn and even guide us to storage locations. The game was just a bit of fun where Scott and I were being attacked by aliens from all over the place and we fired our canons by squeezing our fingers together. We had to dodge their missiles hence a lot of ducking and weaving going on…much fun!”

Read more about NASA’s Project Sidekick at or watch this video:

Follow Tim Peake via

Learn more about Scott Kelly’s one-year mission in space:

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  1. Hopefully Trump doesnt win the presidential election, cause then all those space immigrants will get taken care of. maybe he'll start building a space wall too.

  2. This made me giggle. Time out for fun and recreation is purposely scheduled for the ISS astronauts. It is important for mental health while they are living there for 6-12 months. Besides, if science isn't (sometimes) fun, then you must doing it wrong.

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