The International Space Station(ISS) is the most talked about subject. What is it? Most people wish to know what it really means. The International Space Station is basically a artificial satellite or you can say a large spacecraft. It is a place where the astronauts live. So, if you wonder where the astronauts live then the mystery has been sorted because they have a home up there.
Do you know that it is also a science lab? The ISS serves as a micro-gravity and is mainly used for it’s research laboratories ranging from biology, human biology, physics, astronomy, meteorology and other fields. The space/universe is so big and there are multiple concepts to study. What if the astronauts find a peculiar meteorite or an unfamiliar object? They would go back to the science lab and study it.
Who has built it?
There are many countries behind the International Space Station. They built it together for the astronauts. There are no discriminations up in the sky as they work together under the same space station. The space station was built up by the astronauts using several pieces. NASA uses this space station to learn more about space and working or living in space.
The first piece was launched in the year 1998 and it took two years to build the entire space station. It was in the year 2000 when the first crew landed on the space station. Many more pieces were added later on and whenever astronauts visit the space, they stay on the International Space Station. The parts of the space station are called modules. The modules are called nodes and they connect the parts of the station from one to another.
How big is the space station?
The space station has five bedrooms. It is a home for the astronauts. The house contains two bathrooms as well as a gymnasium. You can get a good workout up in space as well. Six astronauts can live inside the house and it is built for their comfort and convenience. It is a big station and weighs more than million pounds.
How do they get electricity?
There are solar arrays on the space station which collect energy from the sun. The energy from the sun converts into electricity. There is robot arms outside which helped in building the International Space Station.
Just imagine that there is a home out there which includes five bedrooms and electricity. Astronauts stay there and workout. We have seen pictures of astronauts playing guitar and having a fun time up there. There is a home on the orbit. Some research work cannot be done on Earth and so, the space station is the ideal place for carrying out the research.
Water is dangerous to use on the space station because it could cause choking in case the astronauts inhale it. They use wet/moist wipes up there. Sunita Williams had to chop off her long hair before the mission because personal hygiene becomes a problem up there. As for health conditions, the face bloats up and the stomach feels funny. Everything tastes like cardboard on space station because smell and taste senses are diminished up in space. You will not get the taste of dishes that you get on Earth.
NASA has major plans of sending humans into deep space and this is just one way to start. Scientists are able to study the living conditions on space. Since astronauts are living in space, they can find out how it is like. What are the challenges that they face? The structure of the space station is like an interconnecting tube. It has wing-like panels as well. It looks like a satellite but it is actually a home for the astronauts. It takes two days to reach the space station but the experience is extraordinary. To think that a home is built in orbit is plausible. Would NASA send us to a space station as well? We just have to wait and watch!
Top 10 Facts About ISS
- The International Space Station (ISS) is a habitable artificial satellite in low Earth orbit.
- The ISS is a collaboration between NASA, the Russian Space Agency (Roscosmos), the European Space Agency (ESA), the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), and the Canadian Space Agency (CSA).
- The ISS is the largest human-made object in orbit and has been continuously occupied by a rotating crew of astronauts and cosmonauts since 2000.
- The ISS orbits Earth at an altitude of approximately 250 miles (400 km) and travels at a speed of about 17,500 miles per hour (28,000 km/h).
- The ISS has a pressurized volume of 32,333 cubic feet (916 cubic meters) and has living quarters for the crew, laboratory space for scientific experiments, and systems for life support and propulsion.
- The ISS is powered by solar panels that convert sunlight into electricity, and also has a system for recharging batteries.
- The ISS conducts research in a variety of fields, including biology, Earth science, human research, physical sciences, and technology development.
- The ISS has been visited by more than 240 people from 18 countries, including astronauts and cosmonauts from NASA, Roscosmos, ESA, JAXA, and CSA.
- The ISS has been used for a number of commercial activities, including satellite launches and remote sensing of Earth’s surface.
- The ISS is planned to be operated until at least 2024, with the possibility of extending its life to 2028 or beyond.