To Tweet, Or Not To Tweet

NASA held its first ever live 'tweet-up' yesterday, an event where followers of the two twittering ISS astronauts, Nicole Stott and Jeff Williams, could ask questions on live television. The event itself was a complete success, but was cut short by a "Houston, we have a problem" moment - a loud beeping noise that prompted Jeff Williams to utter "Excuse us just a second". A frantic live TV search for the source was ended shortly after as the station passed out of communications range. The alarm was false though, an erroneous reading from a smoke detector in the Russion segment.

Several questions were answered by Stott and Williams before the alarm though.

When asked by "Sarah" if there was anything about living on the space station that the astronauts hadn't prepared or trained for, Nicole Stott replied "Something you can't train for is how your body is going to react to the new environment. Getting used to moving from one place to another without walking - just floating and pushing off of surfaces... I think that has been a really cool part of this whole experience."

A teacher from Rochester, New York, said his students wanted to know why they choose to be astronauts, given the risk. Stott replied "I wouldn't do this if I didn't think it was. I have a family at home, I have a young son. I truly believe that what we're doing up here is opening up new opportunities for him as well as for the rest of the world."

After the alarm and loss of signal, NASA directed the questions to astronauta on the ground, Michael Fincke and Tom Jones. When asked if such alarms were common, Jones replied "Every couple of days you're going to get something like that, when a sensor reads a slightly higher or lower than expected level of cabin pressure, instrument voltage, or something similar."

Watch the tweetup here.

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