Oxygen: It’s the Future

Am I the only one who watches sci-fi, with people sailing through the depths of space in various types of craft, and wonders what it’s like to breathe artificial oxygen? I’ve seen it addressed in ONE movie. ONE. Someone gets on a spaceship for the first time and says that the air tastes a bit tinny. A veteran says that it’s the oxygen generator, and that they get used to it. Boom, end scene.

And that’s it. Oh, people will run out of oxygen in space, and sometimes there’s a race against time while a person’s oxygen is depleting, but it’s never really explored except in a crisis. It’s like in the future, oxygen services have ascended and become impossibly perfect. That’d be a nice thing to have in real life.

I guess homes aren’t sealed environments, so we don’t have to think about it. Oxygen therapy near Melbourne can’t be expected to perform the work of whoever does oxygen in a science fiction TV show, because people are always doing silly things like opening the windows, walking through doors (which do not generally have an attached airlock) and having proper ventilation. No ventilation in a spaceship…which also raises the question: is the air on a spaceship really quite pungent? It’s all artificial oxygen, mixed with body odours. I’d imagine a lot of it has to be recycled, so if I was captaining a vessel into deep space, I wouldn’t leave port without stocking up on vanilla air fresheners.

Alright, so maybe the oxygen on spaceships, and even lighter spacecraft designed for one or two people, also has to be modified to be odourless, or maybe it can be mixed with a fun strawberry whiff.

And now I’m wondering about those hyperbaric chambers, and what the oxygen smells like in those things. Maybe in the future, all homes will basically be large oxygen chambers that regulate the flow of air, so companies in Melbourne that sell portable hyperbaric will be as important as the guy who lays the bricks, because…well, some science will say that a sealed oxygen environment is better for you. Seems logical.

Make sure to stock up on vanilla scent though. Nothing is escaping once your personal home airlock closes.