'Spacing Out with the Everyday Astronaut' Launches on Facebook Watch with a 'Marswalk'

The Everyday Astronaut will take you on a simulated trip to Mars today (May 4), just a few hours before NASA launches its latest mission toward the Red Planet.

Photographer Tim Dodd created the Everyday Astronaut persona after buying a used Russian spacesuit in an online auction in 2013. What started as a lark has become a long-running, elaborate art-and-education project that takes Dodd around the world — and now, onto your computer screen, in the new Facebook Watch series "Spacing Out with the Everyday Astronaut."

The series consists of five episodes, each of them 10 to 15 minutes long. The first one premieres today, and you can watch it on Space.com's Facebook page. (Space.com is a partner on the show, which is produced by Jupiter Entertainment and MadWest Content.) 

In today's episode, Dodd rigs up a system in an attempt to experience Mars' lower gravitational pull here on Earth. You'll have to tune in to see how it goes. You can also ask Dodd all about the show in a Reddit AMA here from about 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. EDT (1700-2000 GMT).

Tim Dodd, host of "Spacing Out with the Everyday Astronaut" on Facebook Watch, plants a flag after a "Marswalk" in the series premiere, which debuted May 4, 2018. (Image credit: Photos provided by Jupiter Entertainment)

"Basically, a dream of mine came true. We did something I've been wanting to do for years, via weather balloons," Dodd said of the first episode. "I think that's probably my favorite one; it'll be tough to top that one."

The episode's release coincides nicely with the launch of NASA's InSight Mars lander, which is scheduled for Saturday  (May 5) at 7:05 a.m. EDT (1105 GMT) from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.

Tim Dodd uses giant balloons to try and reach his weight on Mars in the first episode of "Spacing Out with the Everyday Astronaut" on Facebook Watch. (Image credit: Photos provided by Jupiter Entertainment)

If everything goes according to plan, InSight — which is short for "Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport" — will arrive at the Red Planet in late November. It will then begin a two-year prime mission to investigate Mars' interior structure, gathering data that should help researchers better understand how rocky planets form and evolve, NASA officials have said.

Visit Spacing Out with the Everyday Astronaut on Facebook for more series information. 

Follow Mike Wall on Twitter @michaeldwall and Google+. Follow us @Spacedotcom, Facebook or Google+. Originally published on Space.com.

Join our Space Forums to keep talking space on the latest missions, night sky and more! And if you have a news tip, correction or comment, let us know at: community@space.com.

Mike Wall
Senior Space Writer

Michael Wall is a Senior Space Writer with Space.com and joined the team in 2010. He primarily covers exoplanets, spaceflight and military space, but has been known to dabble in the space art beat. His book about the search for alien life, "Out There," was published on Nov. 13, 2018. Before becoming a science writer, Michael worked as a herpetologist and wildlife biologist. He has a Ph.D. in evolutionary biology from the University of Sydney, Australia, a bachelor's degree from the University of Arizona, and a graduate certificate in science writing from the University of California, Santa Cruz. To find out what his latest project is, you can follow Michael on Twitter.