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Disabled Astronaut is concerned his prosthetic will release poisonous gas

John Mcfall

The first disabled astronaut has raised concerns his prosthetic leg may be poisonous for the air inside a space station.

Tests are being carried out on the leg belonging to John McFall to make sure it does not give off toxic gases.

The former British Paralympian is undergoing training to become the world’s first disabled astronaut after being selected by the European Space Agency [ESA] in November 2022.

But he told The Daily Telegraph his prosthetic limb "is carbon fibre and it's got like a high-density foam on the inside" which could release poisonous gas inside a closed space station.

McFall, 42, explained: "The carbon fibre socket is impregnated with a resin. The foam is made with polymers.

"Those materials will continue to give off gases to one degree or another and in an environment like the ISS where the air is constantly recycled, any significant amount of gases that are produced from a material will be amplified over a period of time because they're not filtered out."

McFall is undertaking a study examining any impacts which could occur for an amputee in space and finding solutions.

The prosthetic is being tested by a team at the ESA to ensure the leg complies with NASA standards.

McFall lost his right leg in a motorcycle accident at the age of 19, after the collision he went on to become a professional track and field athlete where he competed for Great Britain and Northern Ireland at the Paralympic Games, he won bronze at the Beijing Games in 2008.

[ John McFall will find out if he is successful to go into space when the study ends in 2025 ]

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