For the past few days, since I found out about this, I've been trying to figure out what was the reasoning behind taking dinosaur bones into space. Everywhere I looked I couldn't find any explanation to why, and this place doesn't seem to be the best to ask this question, but I don't know where else I could.

I know that in 1985 NASA's Spacelab 2 took a piece of bone from a Maiasaura Peeblesorum dinosaur. But why? What did they do with it? What was that they tried to find out?

There was also a second dinosaur bone that went into space 3 years later, Coelophysis, again, with unknown reason.

If this question is way off the topic, please guide me to the right place. This has baffled me for awhile now.


Here are the links I found with the information about dinosaurs in space:
The First Dinosaurs in Space
Dinosaurs In Space!

  • $\begingroup$ I included a couple links to articles regarding this. I also read about it in some book, but again, no explanation to why. It all points to me that it was just something cool to do, no actual reason. $\endgroup$
    – slybloty
    Aug 19, 2014 at 17:05
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Taking something to space and blogging/bragging about it has been a staple food of PR-types for a long time. $\endgroup$ Aug 20, 2014 at 6:31

1 Answer 1


Neither mission made use of the dinosaur bone fragments in any of their recorded experiments. The most reasonable explanation is that the astronauts who carried them aboard did so for the opportunity to say "Dinosaurs in Space!"



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