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Could a people do all sort of gymnastics movement in vacuum space? I asked this because I am worry about that the astronaut leave the space shuttle during emergency could not go back to earth by himself if there are no fuel on the astronaut, could he swim in space to get back on earth even if there are no water?

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closed as not a real question by Qmechanic, Ebenezer Sklivvze, Manishearth Dec 28 '12 at 12:42

It's difficult to tell what is being asked here. This question is ambiguous, vague, incomplete, overly broad, or rhetorical and cannot be reasonably answered in its current form. For help clarifying this question so that it can be reopened, visit the help center.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

    
I don't understand your question. Could you try clarifying? –  Jonathan Gleason May 3 '12 at 22:10
    
Possible duplicates: physics.stackexchange.com/q/886/2451 and links therein. –  Qmechanic May 3 '12 at 22:16

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

No, you can't move in space (aside from following your orbit), unless you have something to push against. See Newton's Laws of Motion. (Also, if said astronaut did manage to re-enter the atmosphere, he or she would burn up on re-entry. The impact wouldn't be survivable either.)

Astronauts are well aware that many sorts of emergencies will not be survivable.

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Er...while you can not influence either you linear or your angular momentum you can (in principle) influence your orientation (or the phase associated with a non-zero rotational motion). –  dmckee May 3 '12 at 22:45
    
@dmckee: Really? Is that true in practice, or is it only some GR result that would be undetectable on human scales? –  Colin K May 4 '12 at 1:03
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@ColinK: It's true in practice and is how springboard divers power half-twists (by contortion of their arms). Longer twists musts take advantage of setting up unstable rotations around $I_2$. Think of it this way. You can't change your $L$, but you can rotate one part of your body relative another part until you run out of range of motion, so the final result is that you continue with the same $\omega$ but a different phase. Not sure how practical it is going to be in a vacuum suit, however. –  dmckee May 4 '12 at 1:40
    
@dmckee - Sure, but if he's worried about astronauts in orbit around the Earth, changing orientation isn't going to do the trick. –  Rex Kerr May 4 '12 at 15:53
    
great video of playing with angular momentum in space. looks fun. youtube.com/watch?v=dmnmuTv4pGE –  John Meacham Jul 19 at 7:58

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