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NASA Planetary Protection Officer Wants to Ban Red Cars from Reaching Space

Back in 2017, NASA announced it would create a so-called planetary protection office, a one-person department charged with safeguarding Earth from space evils of all kinds. After a bunch of people applied for the job and it's $187,000 a year salary, including a 9-year-old boy, the position was filled earlier this month by astrobiologist Lisa Pratt.
No more cars in space, NASA says 1 photo
Photo: SpaceX
As soon as the scientist took over her new role, she already identified the first threat to Earth’s integrity: cars flying off into space. And we, as the planet’s inhabitants, can blame it all on Elon Musk’s red Tesla Roadster.

Pratt, a former professor at Indiana University’s Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, believes better collaboration between her agency and commercial ventures doing business in space might prevent another car from reaching space.

“We have to figure out how to work closely, how to move forward in a collaborative posture, so we don’t have another red Roadster up there in orbit,”
Pratt was quoted as saying by Space News.

Why are cars in space a menace, you ask? Pollution, first of all. As a planetary protection officer, Pratt is in charge with keeping not only Earth safe and clean, but also the other planets of the solar system, the space between them and every other rock floating aimlessly out there.

As a result, talks would be held with interested parties to prevent pointless launches of garbage into space and to other planets.

Strangely enough, the astrobiologist did not mention anything about the possibility of the Roadster turning meteor and impacting Earth millions of year from now.

Otherwise, Pratt has no objections to sending pieces of metal with wheels on Mars, for instance. She supports the idea of several landers and rovers being sent to a few specially selected locations on the Red Planet so that they can look for signs of life on the neighboring ball of dirt.
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About the author: Daniel Patrascu
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Daniel loves writing (or so he claims), and he uses this skill to offer readers a "behind the scenes" look at the automotive industry. He also enjoys talking about space exploration and robots, because in his view the only way forward for humanity is away from this planet, in metal bodies.
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