The crew aboard the International Space Station (ISS) rang in the New Year with a zero-gravity twist while in orbit about 250 miles from Earth.
The Expedition 64 crew comprised of NASA astronauts Kate Rubins, Mike Hopkins, Victor Glover, Shannon Walker and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency astronaut Soichi Noguchi wished those still earthbound a happy New Year from space in a video posted to NASA’s social media.
Glover said one of the most famous New Year’s Eve traditions is watching the ball drop from Times Square in New York City, an event that most had to watch on TV this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“As many of us celebrate the New Year from home this year, we’ve brought this famous tradition to space to share with you,” Hopkins said.
However, Noguchi added that since the astronauts were in zero gravity, their celebration will have a “special twist.”
“We hope this inspires you to celebrate in your own way,” Walker said.
The astronauts gave a quick countdown and Rubins, who was holding an inflatable globe, released it into zero gravity. Instead of the typical ball drop, the globe floated straight above their heads.
“Happy New Year!” the crew cheered.