Watch as the theoretical physicist pirouettes through the air! Marvel as the greatest brain of our time floats through space! Be astounded as his iron stomach appears to withstand the rigors of the "Vomit Comet"!
On Thursday, Stephen Hawking boarded a zero-gravity flight for the honor of being shot up and down on eight nauseating parabolic dives. The flight was potentially just the first step toward an actual trip to space. Last year, after announcing his firm belief that the human species would not survive unless it found a way to leave Earth, and expressing a desire to try space himself, Hawking was offered a spot on the yet-to-exist Virgin Galactic spacecraft.
"Space, here I come," Hawking said at the end of his flight. And if Richard Branson ever manages to build the thing, maybe we'll get to see our favorite physicist kickin' it zero-g style for more than 25 seconds. —Abby Seiff
Five amazing, clean technologies that will set us free, in this month's energy-focused issue. Also: how to build a better bomb detector, the robotic toys that are raising your children, a human catapult, the world's smallest arcade, and much more.