Sex in space

Sex in space is human sexual activity in the weightlessness of outer space. It presents difficulties for the performance of most sexual activities due to Newton's third law. According to the law, if the couple remain attached, their movements will counter each other. Consequently, their actions will not change their velocity unless they are affected by another, unattached, object. Some difficulty could occur due to drifting into other objects. If the couple have a combined velocity relative to other objects, collisions could occur. There have been suggestions that conception and pregnancy in off-Earth environments could be an issue.[1][2][3][4]

As of 2009, with NASA planning long-term missions for lunar settlements with goals to explore and colonize space, the topic has taken a respected place in life sciences. Scientist Stephen Hawking publicly concluded in 2006 that possibly human survival itself will depend on successfully contending with the extreme environments of space.[5][6][7]

Physiological issues

Numerous physiological changes have been noted during spaceflight, many of which may affect sex and procreation. Such effects would be a result of factors including gravity changes, radiation, noise, vibration, isolation, disrupted circadian rhythms, stress, or a combination of these factors.[8]

Gravity and microgravity

The primary issue to be considered in off-Earth reproduction is the lack of gravitational acceleration. Life on Earth, and thus the reproductive and ontogenetic processes of all extant species and their ancestors, evolved under the constant influence of the Earth's 1g gravitational field. It is imperative to study how space environment affects critical phases of mammalian reproduction and development as well as events surrounding fertilization, embryogenesis, pregnancy, birth, postnatal maturation, and parental care.[9] Gravity affects all aspects of vertebrate development, including cell structure and function, organ system development, and even behavior. As gravity regulates mammalian gene expression, there are significant implications for successful procreation in an extraterrestrial environment.

Studies conducted on reproduction of mammals in microgravity include experiments with rats. Although the fetus developed properly once exposed to normal gravity, the rats that were raised in microgravity lacked the ability to right themselves.[10] Another study examined mouse embryo fertilization in microgravity. Although both groups resulted in healthy mice once implanted at normal gravity, the authors noted that the fertilization rate was lower for the embryos fertilized in microgravity than for those in normal gravity.[11] Currently no mice or rats have developed while in microgravity throughout the entire developmental cycle.[12]


The 2suit (alternately 2-Suit or twosuit) is a garment designed to facilitate low-effort sex in the weightless environments such as outer space, or on planets with low gravity.[13] The flight garment, invented by American novelist Vanna Bonta,[2] was one of the subjects of Sex in Space, a 2008 History Channel television documentary about the biological and emotional implications of human migration and reproduction beyond Earth.[13][14][15] The 2suit sparked international discussions in news and political debates as a metaphor for human colonization of space.[16][17]

Planned attempts

In February 2013, Dennis Tito's Inspiration Mars Foundation announced that they were going to send a two-person crew – a man and a woman – on a 501-day, free-return, flyby mission to Mars and back. Jane Poynter stressed the importance of the pre-existing stable emotional bond between the members of the couple. She cited her own experience as being a Biosphere 2 crew member together with her husband Taber MacCallum, who is the chief technology officer of Inspiration Mars.

In June 2015, Pornhub announced its plans to make the first pornographic film in space. It launched a crowdfunding campaign to fund the effort, dubbed Sexploration, with the goal of raising $3.4 million in 60 days. The campaign only received pledges for $236,086. If funded, the film would have been slated for a 2016 release, following six months of training for the two performers and six-person crew.[18][19][20][21] Though it claimed to be in talks with multiple private spaceflight carriers, the company declined to name names "for fear that that would risk unnecessary fallout" from the carriers.[18] A article about the campaign mentioned that in 2008, Virgin Galactic received and rejected a $1 million offer from an undisclosed party to shoot a sex film on board SpaceShipTwo.[19]

Adult film actress CoCo Brown had begun certifying for a co-pilot seat in the XCOR Lynx spaceplane, which would have launched in a suborbital flight in 2016 and spent a short amount of time in zero-gravity.[22] However, XCOR declared bankruptcy before ever flying a space tourist.[23]

Short of actual space, the adult entertainment production company Private Media Group has filmed a movie called The Uranus Experiment: Part Two where an actual zero-gravity intercourse scene was accomplished by flying an airplane to an altitude of 11,000 feet (3350 meters) and then doing a steep dive. The filming process was particularly difficult from a technical and logistical standpoint. Budget constraints allowed for only one 20-second shot, featuring the actors Sylvia Saint and Nick Lang.[24] Berth Milton, Jr, president and CEO of Private Media Group, says "You would not want to be afraid of flying, that's for sure!"[25]

Science fiction writer and futurist Isaac Asimov, in a 1973 article "Sex in a Spaceship", conjectured what sex would be like in the weightless environment of space, anticipating some of the benefits of engaging in sex in an environment of microgravity.[26]

On July 23, 2006, a Sex in Space panel was held at the Space Frontier Foundation's annual conference. Speakers were science journalist-author Laura Woodmansee, who presented her book Sex in Space;[27] Jim Logan, the first graduate of a new aerospace medicine residency program to be hired by NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston; and Vanna Bonta, an American poet, novelist, and actress who had recently flown in zero gravity and had agreed to an interview for Woodmansee's book.[13] The speakers made presentations that explored "the biological, emotional, and ... physical issues that will confront people moving [off Earth] into the space environment."[28] NBC science journalist Alan Boyle reported on the panel, opening a world discussion of a topic previously considered taboo.[2]

"Sex in Space" was the title of an episode of the History Channel documentary television series The Universe in 2008. The globally distributed show was dubbed into foreign languages, opening worldwide discussion about what had previously been avoided as a taboo subject. Sex in space became a topic of discussion for the long-term survival of the human species, colonization of other planets, inspired songs, and humanized reasons for space exploration.[4][16][17][29][30][31][32][33][34]

The idea of sex in space appears frequently in science fiction. Arthur C. Clarke claimed to first address it in his novel Rendezvous with Rama (1973).[35]Among films that include space-sex themes are Moonraker, Moving Violations, Supernova and Cube 2: Hypercube. In the novelization of Alien, Parker tells Brett about an episode of zero-G sex that went wrong. A more recent and perhaps more realistic description of the mechanics of low-gravity intercourse is presented in "Sex in Space: The Video", a short story contained in Susie Bright's The Best American Erotica 2004. The story uses cheating astronauts to describe techniques humans might use to copulate in space without special apparatus. The difficulties microgravity poses for human intimacy were also discussed in an anonymous fictional "NASA Document 12-571-3570" in 1989, where the use of an elastic belt and an inflatable tunnel were proposed as solutions to these problems. A mission patch and other documents were determined to be hoaxes.

See also



  1. Monks, Keiron (April 9, 2012). "Thrusters on full: Sex in space". Metro. Free Daily News Group Inc./Star Media Group. Archived from the original on November 10, 2014. Retrieved June 12, 2015.
  2. Boyle, Alan (July 24, 2006). "Outer-space sex carries complications". Archived from the original on April 25, 2015. Retrieved June 12, 2015.
  3. Seks in de ruimte: is het mogelijk?, By Caroline Hoek; 7 April 2012
  4. S’envoyer en l’air dans l’espace Par Kieron Monks, Metro World News; 11 Avril 2012
  5. Hui, Sylvia (June 13, 2006). "Hawking Says Humans Must Colonize Space". Purch. Associated Press. Archived from the original on May 11, 2008. Retrieved January 3, 2009.
  6. Hui, Sylvia (June 13, 2006). "Hawking: Humans Must Spread Out in Space". The Washington Post. Retrieved June 12, 2015.
  7. Delange, Catherine (May 20, 2012). "The importance of sex in space". Cosmos. Archived from the original on June 12, 2015. Retrieved June 12, 2015.
  8. Jennings, RT; Santy, PA (1990). "Reproduction in the space environment: Part II. Concerns for human reproduction". Obstetrical & Gynecological Survey. 45 (1): 7–17. doi:10.1097/00006254-199001000-00006.
  9. Ronca, April E (2003). "Mammalian Development in Space". 9: 217–251. doi:10.1016/S1569-2574(03)09009-9. ISSN 1569-2574. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  10. B, Fritzsch; LL, Bruce (October 1995). "Utricular and saccular projections of fetal rats raised in normal gravity and microgravity". NLM Gateway Search. ASGSB Bull. Archived from the original on 9 August 2011. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
  11. Wakayama, Sayaka; Kawahara, Yumi; et al. (August 25, 2009). Dey, Sudhansu (ed.). "Detrimental Effects of Microgravity on Mouse Preimplantation Development In Vitro". PLoS ONE. Public Library of Science. 4 (8): e6753. Bibcode:2009PLoSO...4.6753W. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0006753. ISSN 1932-6203. PMC 2727478. PMID 19707597. Archived from the original on February 17, 2015.
  12. Crawford-Young, Susan J. (2006). "Effects of microgravity on cell cytoskeleton and embryogenesis" (PDF). The International Journal of Developmental Biology. 50 (2/3): 183–191. doi:10.1387/ijdb.052077sc. ISSN 0214-6282. PMID 16479487. Retrieved January 25, 2014.
  13. "Vanna Bonta Talks Sex in Space". August 19, 2012. Archived from the original on March 22, 2015. Retrieved June 12, 2015.
  14. "Sex in Space". The Universe. Season 3. December 2, 2008. History Channel.
  15. History Channel to air special on 'sex in space' New Scientist December 17, 2008
  16. Ference, Audrey (October 4, 2012). "Celebrate Sputnik Day by Thinking About Space Sex". The L Magazine. Archived from the original on June 12, 2015. Retrieved June 12, 2015.
  17. Schwartz, Marty (December 16, 2012). "1000 Words, 1000 Days: Day 351 – Space-Boinking In The 21st Century!". The Paltry Sapien. Archived from the original on November 10, 2014.
  18. Moye, David (June 10, 2015). "Pornhub Crowdfunds First Porn Shot In Space". The Huffington Post. Archived from the original on June 12, 2015. Retrieved June 12, 2015.
  19. Wall, Mike (June 11, 2015). "Sex in Space: Porn Group Wants to Crowdfund Zero-G Adult Film". Archived from the original on June 12, 2015. Retrieved June 12, 2015.
  20. Moyer, Justin Wm (2015-06-11). "PornHub crowdfunds for sex tape filmed in space". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2015-11-21.
  21. "Pornhub launches crowdfund to film porn in space". CNBC. Retrieved 2015-11-21.
  22. Love, Dylan. "Former porn star CoCo Brown is headed to outer space". Daily Dot. Retrieved 9 September 2019.
  23. Messier, Doug (5 July 2017). "XCOR Lays off Remaining Employees". Retrieved 8 September 2019.
  24. "Zero Gravity Sex Film Up for Award". 16 May 2000. Archived from the original on 20 June 2000. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
  25. "'To Boldly Go': Star Trek, Sex and Space". 16 May 2000. Archived from the original on 6 July 2008.
  26. Asimov, Isaac (January 1973). "Sex in a Spaceship". Sexology Magazine. Cite journal requires |journal= (help) (Reprinted in Science Past – Science Future, 1975)
  27. Greene, Nick, "Review: Sex in Space by Laura S. Woodmansee", About: Space/Astronomy,, archived from the original on December 14, 2006
  28. "NewSpace 2006 Agenda". Space Frontier Foundation. Retrieved April 10, 2015.
  29. La fantasía del sexo en gravedad cero PERU21; 29 August 2012
  30. From Quarks to Quasars The Complications of Sex in Space October 9, 2013
  31. Outside Magazine Archived 2010-09-19 at the Wayback Machine December 2006 issue
  32. 7 Real Suits That Will Soon Make the World A Cooler Place by Soren Bowie, Cracked; 15 November 2010
  33. Tener bebés en el espacio podría ser peligroso FayerWayer, (Science Feature) Boxbyte en Ciencia, Destacados; October 2010
  34. Wakacje w Kosmosie? Dajcie sobie z tym spokój!, by Tomasz Rożek, GAZETA; 17 October 2011
  35. Clarke, Arthur C. (1974-09-23). "Letters to the Editor". Time.

General references

  • Freitas Jr., Robert (April 1983). "Sex in Space". Sexology Today (48): 58–64.
  • Levin, RJ (August 1989). "Effects of space travel on sexuality and the human reproductive system". Journal of the British Interplanetary Society. 42 (7): 378–82. PMID 11540233.
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