Thanasphere

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"Thanasphere" is a short story by Kurt Vonnegut, first published on 2 September 1950 in Collier's Weekly, and later in Bagombo Snuff Box in 1999.

The story is set at the dawn of space exploration, where a military experiment led by Dr. Groszinger, who supervises the launch of the first human being into space, Major Allen Rice. Rice is launched into orbit around Earth to observe weather conditions over enemy territories, but Rice soon starts receiving messages from dead people, whose spirits inhabit the atmosphere. Thinking Rice has lost his mind, the military calls off the project, and Dr. Groszinger himself is forced to deny that they sent a man into space.