No, this photo does not show a rocket docked to the International Space Station


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On November 29, 2021, the Twitter account “THE FLAT EARTH” published a photograph and misleadingly suggested that the photo showed a space shuttle docked to the International Space Station in a way an amateur filmmaker might portray:

The image is a real photograph, but it does not show a space shuttle docked with the space station.

As Jeffrey Pinyan, webmaster of the Amateur Astronomers Association of Princeton, pointed out, NASA does not exactly hide the context of the photograph. The caption for the photo indicates that the shuttle, a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, is still on Earth:

The photo was the first job with a link to the original version by Kathy Lueders, director of the NASA manned space flight program. NASA is preparing to launch the rocket and the Dragon spacecraft on December 21, 2021, as part of a commercial refueling mission to the space station.

As the name suggests, Flat Earth people believe the planet we live on is shaped like a disc, not a globe, an idea that has been debunked for centuries. Members of the movement harbor a deep distrust of science and institutions.


Sources:

“Fighting the Flat Earth Theory”. Physics World, July 14, 2020, https://physicsworld.com/a/fighting-flat-earth-theory/.

“NASA Announces Date for SpaceX’s 24th Cargo Resupply Mission.” Kennedy Space Center, November 24, 2021, https://blogs.nasa.gov/kennedy/2021/11/24/nasa-announces-date-for-spacexs-24th- cargo-resupply-mission /? Utm_source = TWITTER & utm_medium = KathyLueders & utm_campaign = NASASocial & linkId = 141839414.


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