A common misconception about space is that objects are free from the shackles of gravity.
The truth is that every place in space has at least a small amount of gravity — that’s why the moon remains in contant orbit around Earth.
So then, why do videos from the International Space Station (ISS) feature astronauts float in place, appearing weightless?
It’s because of something called microgravity.
Objects in the ISS are in a state of microgravity, a sort of perpetual free fall, moving at 17,500 miles per hour. But instead of falling toward the Earth, they fall around Earth, matching Earth’s curves to stay in orbit.
And strange things can happen in microgravity: Flowers smell different, moss grows in spirals, and candles burn in spheres. Everyday things such as fire and water can act kind of funky. Here are a few examples: