Teen Corrects NASA Error - Atlas Obscura
Our new kids' book is on sale! Shop now.

Teen Corrects NASA Error

The International Space Station was showing an anomaly.

You guys better check your data.
You guys better check your data. kowh/CC BY 2.0

Forget space camp, one U.K. teenager found and corrected a data error on the International Space Station in his free time.

According to the BBC, 17-year-old Sheffield student Miles Soloman, taking part in a project with the Institute for Research in Schools, was looking over a spreadsheet of the radiation data recorded on the space station when he noticed something funny. Down at the lowest levels of the readings, a negative amount of radiation was recorded. Since detecting a negative amount of energy isn’t a thing, Soloman knew something was up.

He contacted NASA with his findings, and they said that while his discovery was appreciated, it was already a known issue. However, scientists thought that the anomaly was only occurring once every few years, but Soloman’s information indicated that the discrepancy was occurring multiple times a day.

His discovery might not have been Earth-shattering, but detecting these kinds of anomalies is just one small, but essential, part of keeping us in space.