What Happens to the Human Body When it Dies in Space

Jakarta, CNN Indonesia —

As technology advances, travel to space for vacations has become a real thing. This means humans are starting to think about what it would be like to live in outer space.

But, what happens if someone dies in space?

When dead on earth, the human body will go through several stages of decay. This was explained as early as 1247 in Song Ci’s The Washing Away of Wrongs, which was essentially the first forensic science handbook.

First, the blood stops flowing and begins to pool due to gravity, a process known as livor mortis. Then the body cools down which is called the algor mortis stage.

Furthermore, the muscles become stiff due to uncontrolled accumulation of calcium in the muscle fibers, this stage is referred to as a state of rigor mortis.

Enzymes which are proteins that speed up chemical reactions, break down cell walls releasing their contents.

At the same time, the bacteria in our intestines get out and spread throughout the body. They devour soft tissue so that the body begins to decompose and the gases they emit cause the body to swell.

The decomposition process is an intrinsic factor, but there are also external factors that affect the decomposition process, including temperature, insect activity, burying or wrapping the body, and the presence of fire or water.

Mummification or drying of the body, occurs in dry conditions that can be hot or cold.

In a humid environment without oxygen can occur the formation of adipocere, where water can cause the breakdown of fat into waxy material through the process of hydrolysis.

This waxy layer can act as a barrier over the skin to protect and preserve it.

But in most cases, the soft tissue will eventually disappear leaving only the protruding skeleton left. Such hard tissue is much more resilient and can last for thousands of years.

Stop decomposition

Then, if death in space will be like what?

The difference in gravity seen on other planets will inevitably have an impact on the livor mortis stage, and the lack of gravity while floating in space also means blood won’t collect.

Reported from The Next Web, in the spacesuit, rigor mortis will still occur because it is the result of the cessation of bodily functions.

See further explanation on the next page..

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