I was watching a feed on the latest footage of Hurricane Matthew as seen from the ISS just now, relayed from NASA TV. Suddenly, I spotted something poking out of the ISS hull in the footage that appeared to be a shockmounted 180-degree-dual-microphone setup. I just can't understand what's it for even though I've worked in the A/V production field for more than 15 years of my life as both an audio and video technician/engineer.
Now, as far as I know, space is supposed to be a vacuum, and what I have been taught all my life and professional career is that sound requires a medium (i.e. air, water) to travel through. Would someone tell me why on earth there's an array consisting of at least two pieces of 180-degree-separated, shockmounted and foam-windscreened (!??!!) microphones sticking out of the ISS that is supposed to be in orbit outside our atmosphere?
It seems to be a permanent installation as well. Only a few M/S microphone setups would make sense in a 180-degree-L-R-setup like that down here, and even in a case of M/S micing, there should be a third condenser mic somewhere.
And that would make remote sense only IF this was taking place inside the atmosphere or somewhere underwater. The mics seem to be shockmounted and have a windscreen foam around their capsules. This makes absolutely no sense either, since as far as I know, no sound is transmitted through the vacuum of space, apart from what's being "amplified" through the so-called artificial atmospheres such as the astronaut suits or the oxygen-pressurized hull of a spaceship or a space station.
Please see the pic above for reference. Original URL of the live stream relay is/was at
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9x3HpNaaOVM (broken video link with no title given)