Carl Sagan’s Guide to fake news: Japanese astronaut grows in space and now says he’s worried he won’t properly fit in the capsule bringing him back

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Japanese astronaut Lieutenant Norishige Kanai has claimed to have grown 9 cm (3.5 inches) over the 3 weeks that he has spent on the International Space Station (ISS).

In a tweet posted to his personal twitter account, he said “I have a major announcement today. We had our bodies measured after reaching space, and wow, wow, wow, I had actually grown by as much as 9cm!” Although it is common for astronauts to grow between 2cm and 5cm due to the lack of downward pressure from gravity extending their spine, the amount Mr Kanai claims to have grown by is very unusual. It’s not clear how serious Mr Kanai was being, but space is at a premium on the ISS. Mr Kanai said: “I’m a bit worried whether I’ll fit in the Soyuz seat when I go back”.

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