Predicting the Unpredictable: Space Parachutes

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Parachutes are a big part of keeping our astronauts safe, but despite being around for almost 500 years, there are still a lot of things we need to work on before they can be full proof.

Tags: scishow, scishow space, Space, Science, hank green, astrophysics, astronomy, parachutes, theory, da vinci, flight, aerodynamics

  1. David 「Titanium」

    well, there goes skydiving from any list of things I potentially ever would want to try if I can

    can’t even trust parachutes

  2. Jessica L

    In an egg drop contest, my team wanted to do a parachute. I didn’t want to; I didn’t think it would be big enough or had enough height/time to slow the egg by any useful measure. I argued we should either not do a parachute or attach popsicle sticks to give it structure. Sadly, I was outvoted and our simple trash bag “parachute” fluttered flatly in the 2 second fall, doing nothing.
    Thank you, SciShow, for confirming that parachutes are more complex than they seem!

  3. SecretRaginMan

    SpaceX failed during testing. Boeing failed during milestone missions. A little important nuance for ya.

  4. Munk0

    When did Daniel Tosh switch over from comedy to space?

  5. tp lyons

    The small parachutes that bring out the big parachutes are called PILOT CHUTES no drough chutes.

  6. Quality Playlists

    Hank, you dress much cooler than you used to. It’s like I don’t even know you anymore, man

  7. Nilguiri

    That was súper super!

  8. Argysh

    As a former paratrooper who’s now an engineer in the space sector, I could not not watch and like this video.
    Among my peers ‘parachute science’ actually replaced the phrase ‘rocket science’ in the last few years

  9. 2lazy2p4now

    Hank, why don’t they make parachute either completely out of graphine or at least lined with it??

  10. butt

    Lies. We have had cliffs suitable for testing egg parachutes forever. No need for an airplane to evolve parachute design.

  11. bob s

    If your parachute fails to open, take it back to the stores.

  12. Ali Syed

    Hey cool jacket

  13. philip wakeham

    Its Reefer madness !

  14. Friedrich Langerfeld

    Zylon sounds like the next grimes & elon musk child

  15. Master Therion

    Apollo astronauts on liftoff: Shoot for the Moon!
    Returning home: Chute for the Earth!

  16. DDQ75

    Never thought id watch a video about parachutes

  17. Aryadi Subagio

    More reason for me not to go skydive

  18. Rick Seiden

    I wonder if/how much quantum computing will help with simulating this stuff.

  19. jsfbr

    Great presentation!

  20. ipissed

    How can a cat fall safely to the ground with a parachute, then run 2x faster in the still inflated parachute than when it was falling? These are things we still need to figure out because my neighbor was super mad when her cat came home with a parachute.

  21. corynardin

    I think there is a false belief in the space industry that capsules are safer than winged vehicles because they simpler. I think this video points out the fallacy in that logic.

  22. Meletha Lewis

    I think we will have to try thinking of the material and if it’s ready for to use in space.🤔🤔

  23. Carla Merritt

    Excellent! Thank you!

  24. James H

    Aaaaand this is why I will never jump out of a plane… or base jump..

  25. Andrew ST

    1480: “Parachute? What a stupid idea, it won’t every mean anything!”
    2021: “Check out this Mars parachute we used to land an SUV with!!”

  26. Liveordiebyinches

    Just Silk.
    Solved it!

  27. Scribe13

    I wanna try a DaVinci chute

  28. Jay Nod

    People will be kicking themselves in few weeks if they miss the opportunity to buy and invest in bitcoin

  29. Joel

    I don’t think the Boeing failure should have been included in this vid as an example of parachute failure. That parachute may have opened fine, and the fact that it didn’t likely wasn’t because parachutes are inherently hard, but instead because Boeing’s Starliner spacecraft is just an expensive example of mismanagement and negligence.

  30. Paul Ackerman

    I always thought it was called a drone chute. Drogue, huh? Okay.

  31. xaero76

    2:26 that is not the main Parachute…. it is more like a drag chute to pull cargo/cars/tanks ect out of the aircraft, then the main chute deploys, you can even see the main chute starting to deploy from the Humvee, so not a parachute…… Even Space Reentry Vehicles first have a drag chute that deploys the main chute(s)
    2:44, again, that is a Drag Chute… Parachutes and Drag Chutes are designed for different purposes, so they are not proper parachutes

  32. Capitalist Warrior

    I like the new, blue you.

  33. Tumbled Dry

    Spider silk…..A LOT of it

  34. Weljenks Jenkins

    Your Space X reference was somewhat misleading. During a test they intentionally caused one of four parachutes to fail and that caused the other three not to perform optimally. As a result the test craft hit the ground harder than expected. As a result of that test they improved their parachutes and they have worked exceedingly well during their human landings.

  35. Jansen Art

    No disrespect to models, but maybe we should let the physicists handle the parachute design. Or at least the engineers and technicians; design-test-iterate can get expensive but has worked for hundreds of years.

  36. Me


  37. L Dewey MD

    “Space is hard.” Thanks for posting this fascinating video one day before the launch of Inspiration4!!

  38. Marcus LaGrone

    And for variety, the US Army’s T-11 parachutes are extra boxy…

  39. IPSO 0077


  40. Yiglic Persfactious

    Single shoots very very rarely fail.

  41. Justin

    I read the title as Space Chihuahuas lmfao

  42. not sure

    no more poop hank?

  43. sarcasmo57

    This is all fairly interesting.

  44. scalpingsnake

    I shouldn’t have clicked on this video while parachuting…

  45. bookman Etoiles

    haha, the picture at 4:04 isn’t a parachute that’s a paraglider.
    I was sure this would happen, it always does.

  46. AynenMakino

    What I’ve been wondering is breaking systems more akin to what birds use. Their wings are designed to create forward momentum, and wingsuits on humans are able to convert some of the downward momentum of falling into forward momentum as well. And like birds, wingsuits can tilt themselves upright to lower that forward momentum again just before landing. So if you can turn enough downward (falling) momentum into forward momentum, a similar landing to that of a bird should be possible, right?

  47. Rob W

    When I went skydiving, I had to sign all these legal releases including one that said that there was a one in a million chance that both chutes would fail and I would surely die. Spoiler alert: chute 1 worked, I survived.

  48. Aragorn7884

    “Be full proof” -um, it’s *’fool’* proof bruh 🤔🙄

  49. ashtiboy

    well then there’s space x’s star ship! star ship uses its entire body has one big flying wing/parachute to slow itself down for most of the atmospheric reentry ! then when it is at a low enough attitude and speed it fips its nose back up and fires its engines so when it’s slow and close enough to the ground to land without needing parachutes and just uses its landing gear instead the abosb that the last few meters per seconds of speed!

  50. Guillaume


  51. Osmosis Jones

    Is it scientific to as observations are pariedolia because they don’t fit assumptions . Evidence is showing earths magnetic field at times went off&back on . So if mars had similar cycle we shouldn’t assume everything is 3billion years old based on that one crater that could have hit in between pole shifts

  52. Chilly Bot

    Awesome video! I had no idea parachutes were so complex.

  53. Osmosis Jones

    So ancient scifi

  54. arieldahl

    weird shaped parachutes and not a single mention of the cube-ish shaped T-11 parachutes?

  55. the troll

    I think TUCKER GOTT has this covered

  56. Imię Nazwisko

    Thumbnail is kinda wrong.

    Aside from scale (which is pretty understandable, after all you would want both capsule and parachutes be visible) parachutes have wrong pattern and there are 4 instead of 3.

    (Yes, no one asked)

  57. Thomas Haynes


  58. Akios Eres

    “Thier launching themselves outside of thier polluted and deteriorating atmosphere using chemical combustion and then just falling back down hoping that a fancy plastic bag will negate thier momentum enough to save them” – Aliens probably

  59. Imię Nazwisko

    Additionally it’s even harder because they aren’t used only on Earth.
    And at places like Venus or Mars or even Titan, adding extra mass is far more problematic, and atmosphere has different composition on density.

  60. New Message

    ‘Asymmetrical load distribution’ is my body type.

  61. takwa

    It is in a 1400-year-old book
    Big Bang
    “Have those who disbelieved not considered that the heavens and the earth were a joined entity, and We separated them as under and We made from water every living thing? Will they not then believe?” (Holy Quran 21:30)

    “Allah created the heavens and the earth, and all that is between them, in six days” (Holy Quran 7:54)

    Expansion of the Universe
    “And We have built the heaven with might and We continue to expand it indeed.” (Holy Quran 51:48)

    Black Hole
    “No! I swear by the fallings of the stars” (Holy Quran 56:75)

  62. New Message

    * Quietly cancels his skydiving appointment *

  63. Kristel Jean de la Cruz

    so, space parachutes, sparachutes

  64. BackYard Science 2000

    Parachutes kick ass!

  65. The Dog Botherer

    Notified on time… Must be a cold day in hell…

    Next episode: Scientists study how cold hell actually is.

  66. Brusnicki, Roberto


  67. SciShow Space

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