In the early years of space flight, both Russians and Americans used pencils in space. Unfortunately, pencil lead is made of graphite, a highly conductive material. Snapped graphite leads and particles in zero gravity are hugely problematic, as they will get sucked into the air ventilation or electronic equipment, easily causing shorts or fires in the pure oxygen environment of a capsule.
After the fire in Apollo 1 which killed all the astronauts on board, NASA required a writing instrument that wasn’t a fire hazard. Fisher spent over a million dollars (of his own money) creating a pressurized ball point pen, which NASA bought at $2.95 each. The Russian space program also switched over from pencils shortly after.
40 years later snide morons on the internet still snicker about it, because snide morons on the internet never know what they are talking about.
THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU YOU WONDERFUL HUMAN
I’VE HEARD SO MANY PEOPLE GIVE AMERICA SHIT ABOUT THIS AND LAUGH BECAUSE THEY THINK AMERICA IS SO FUCKING STUPID FOR SPENDING A MILLION DOLLARS ON A PEN WHEN THEY COULD’VE USED A PENCIL, LIKE THEY WERE TOO STUPID TO THINK OF THAT CONCEPT
THAT PEN WAS AN IDEA THAT PROBABLY LITERALLY SAVED LIVES AND THIS DAMN POST HAS BEEN CIRCULATING WITH PEOPLE LAUGHING AT NASA AND TREATING THEM LIKE IDIOTS
SHUT THE FUCK UP AND SHIT THE FUCK DOWN