Phew, we were all worried there for a second, but those sex-crazed lizards are back under Russian control. According to a statement from Russian space agency Roscosmos, control has been restored over the orbiting Foton-M4 satellite. If you recall, the satellite was launched a week ago for the purpose of observing gecko mating habits in zero gravity. Subjects included one male gecko and four female geckos along with flies, plant seeds and other microorganisms. Good odds for the male gecko. Am I right?
But, Russian ground control lost communication with the satellite after only a few orbits and as you can imagine, they weren’t thrilled at the prospect that their experiment might be compromised.
The situation has been remedied, however, as of Saturday night.
“The link is established, the prescribed commands have been conducted in accordance with the plan,” confirmed Roscosmos’ chief official Oleg Nikolayevich Ostapenko.
Ostapenko also stated that he believes 90 percent of the satellite’s experiments were still viable.
In case you’re wondering why there was such a brouhaha about a couple lizards getting it on in space without supervision, there are apparently good reasons for the panic. Without Russian control, the Foton-M4 would have been in orbit two months longer than expected. Thus, provided provisions would have run out, and apparently geckos are cannibals if need be. Plus, an uncontrolled atmospheric reentry would have destroyed the spacecraft.
Now that control has been reestablished, the experiments can continue. So, get back to having a good time, lizard folk!