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Questions tagged [iss]

Questions about the International Space Station, a habitable man-made low Earth orbit satellite whose first component was launched in 1998 and used to conduct experiments for a wide variety of research fields in a microgravity environment.

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Were there special circumstances leading to these astronauts' spacewalking 5 days after arrival at the ISS?

@This answer describes two cases where astronauts performed space walks less than six days after arriving at the ISS; Timothy Kopra (Expedition 46) Andrew Feustel and Richard Arnold (Expedition 55) ...
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What's the soonest after ISS arrival that an astronaut has gone on a spacewalk?

I've just read in the New Jersey Herald: Two new arrivals at the International Space Station went spacewalking Thursday less than a week after moving in. NASA astronauts Drew Feustel and Ricky ...
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How does methane waste produced by the ISS interact with our Atmosphere?

The ISS uses a Sabatier reactor to recover oxygen from carbon dioxide. This has an output product of methane. I would imagine that most methane that enters our atmosphere at ground level only reaches ...
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Why does the ISS need thermal blankets if the Sun is hot?

If space is cold at 2.7 Kelvin and heat can't escape in a vacuum then why is the ISS wrapped in space blankets if the sun is hot?
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Why did Columbia never visit the ISS? [duplicate]

According to Wikipedia, there were sixteen Space Shuttle missions to the ISS before the loss of Columbia; of these, six each were by Endeavour and Atlantis, four by Discovery, and none at all by ...
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Why is there a need for getting rid of ISS trash using the empty ATV and similar vehicles

Why is trash from the ISS sent down in some of the cargo vehicles. Would it not make more sense to dump it overboard in the downward + retrograde direction (as described here) and use reusable cargo ...
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What is Astronaut Sunita Williams wearing on her wrist?

The most recent installment of NPR's Brave New Workers A NASA Astronaut Stays In Orbit With SpaceX And Boeing (article & podcast) covers Astronaut Sunita Williams extremely cool new job. She's ...
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What area of the Earth can the ISS be seen from?

I use this to track the ISS: http://iss.astroviewer.net/ EDIT: This URL no longer works. It was a couple of maps that showed the position of the ISS. One close in and one zoomed out more. It was how ...
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Common Berthing Mechanism Dimensions

I've found detailed information on the International Docking Standard, enough to start work on a detailed CAD of the mechanism. (http://www.internationaldockingstandard.com/download/...
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How long does trash jettisoned by hand from the ISS fall before burning up on reentry?

NASA proposed a policy for the jettison of trash from the ISS space station. This article notes that a recent ISS space station spacewalk by Russian cosmonauts involved one man jettisoning by hand a ...
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Have astronauts gotten sick on EVA?

In lots of science fiction, people have EVA suits which automatically preform First Aid or administer temporary medical help (such as painkiller injections) so that they can get themselves to a safe, ...
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Why does the ISS cupola have Interior Protective Sliding Windows

As shown in the center right part of the picture, the International Space Station cupola has an interior sliding window frame, maybe detachable, such as cameras among other instrumentation. Note that ...
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How much would it cost to replace the ISS if we started the effort in 2018?

To the extent that the numbers can be untangled, how was the cost of the ISS distributed in categories such as launch, hardware, and R&D? Since the retirement of the ISS is in the offing, I'm ...
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How to dock space-craft to the ISS?

ISS is orbiting the earth at a speed of 7.66 km/s. It's a really very high speed. So how does a spacecraft that is trying to dock achieve it? Do both spacecraft move at the same speed and in same ...
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Power requirements for NASA's Variable Power Laser Welding Torch

NASA uses a Variable-Power Handheld Laser Torch for their welding in space operations and fixing things in orbit. I've got several questions about this system. Is this system currently available/in ...
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When astronauts or cosmonauts get seated in the spacecraft, are they actually sitting up or lying down?

This might be more of a physics question. If it is, I'll post it in the physics site. If the spacecraft is vertical, wouldn't the astronauts be seated in a lying position so that the G forces do not ...
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Why does the ISS have so much pressurized but uninhabitable space?

From this answer I learned that the International Space Station has over 900m3 of pressurized volume. However, the same answer points out that the inhabitable volume is under 400m3. It seems odd to me ...
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Why does NASA use freeze-dried food for the ISS?

I watched a short documentary on youtube how NASA workers shop in a supermarket or order products, then get meals like spaghetti cooked at their facilities to be freeze-dried and vacuum-sealed for the ...
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Was this large pieces of “space junk” just released from the ISS in the “nadir and retrograde” direction?

According to Space.com's 02-Feb-2018 article Cosmonauts Break Russian Spacewalk Record During Space Station Antenna Repair: The cosmonauts spent the day replacing an electronics box for a high-gain ...
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Do ISS astronauts notice, or experience symptoms of elevated CO2 levels? Do they wear monitors regularly?

A recent (Sept. 2017) news item on the company website of Gas Sensing Solutions Innovative sensor technology assists NASA with vital wearable CO2 monitoring equipment caught my eye. A section of the ...
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Why does the ISS have to be destroyed?

ISS might be destroyed soon, de-orbiting for a controlled reentry into the Pacific Ocean. Why isn't simply pushed away from Earth to an outer stable orbit (not sure if it's possible) or even into an ...
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342 views

For a given amount of fuel, what is the best de-orbit profile for the ISS?

Reading this question, what is the best way to make sure most of ISS (or any other large object planned to be destroyed in the atmosphere) will burn and break into relatively small pieces in the ...
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What is this object outside the ISS that looks like a loudspeaker?

Things in space are not always what they seem. The question Why does there appear to be a 180-degree stereo microphone array outside the ISS? makes that clear. What is this object shown to the right ...
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Why would extra fuel be needed to de-orbit the ISS (if it comes to that)?

The BBC article The Astronaut Fighting to Save our Home in Space discusses “experienced astronaut, and astrophysicist Dr Michael Foale”'s exciting career aboard the Space Shuttle, Soyuz, ...
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ISS - Tiangong 2 minimum safe distance

Using the SGP4 propagator, I calculated the minimum distance between ISS and Tiangong-2 for this year. I obtained 12.32 km for 2017-09-27 17:29:36.376 UTC (which is the day 270.7289). I used the TLE ...
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Can astronauts hear sounds during space walks for repairs?

We know there is no sound in space in a vacuum, but when an astronaut is outside on a spacewalk doing repairs, can they hear the tapping when they use a hammer or the sound of a power screwdriver etc.?...
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Difference in communication delay on ISS

What cause the difference in communication delay, about 11 seconds in this video: and apparently almost no delay on this one: ...
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How do the booms on ISS (and other spacecraft) extend and retract?

In an answer to my previous question, OrganicMarble posted a video: The booms like through the center of ISS solar panels are quite common in space use - supporting ...
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1answer
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Can ISS fold its solar panels?

The solar panel modules of ISS use an extending central truss structure to stretch two "ribbons" of solar panels. Can that structure be re-folded in space, if need arose (for whatever reason), or is ...
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How many ways of communication with ground can ISS crew use?

I'm currently writing fictional story which is happening at ISS and I have so many questions about this topic, but this one is the most important to me. How many possibilities of communication they ...
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How are the orientations of the ISS' eight independent solar arrays optimized?

I've noticed that in various photos and videos the orientation of the ISS' eight independent solar arrays are often moving, and usually some are different than others. 0th-order naive thinking would ...
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6answers
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Is it safe to see the ISS with the naked eye?

As far as I understand, when we view the ISS, it is because the sun rays get reflected from the solar panels of the ISS and reach us at the appropriate angle. So that would be equivalent to viewing ...
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ISS Structural Integrity

The ISS occasionally fires thrusters to correct orbit and uses reaction control wheels to adjust attitude. It also experiences various external forces - tidal, aerodynamic, etc. From the outside, it ...
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What caused this bright light from the ground at night seen from the ISS?

The music video on the NASA Johnson YouTube channel The Sound (& Visions) of Silence shows images and video of Earth taken from the ISS by astronauts Sergey Ryazanskiy, Paolo Nespoli, and ...
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Has an astronaut ever seen pixies, ELVEs, sprites or blue jets (without a camera)?

The NASA Science video ScienceCasts: A Display of Lights Above the Storm shows several examples of Transient Luminous Events (TLEs) (Upper Atmospheric Lightning) being filmed by high-sensitivity ...
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1answer
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How does one refer to the “port port” on the ISS?

Saying "port port" is clumsy. Should I refer to it as the port berthing mechanism? Is there specific terminology for what I'm referring to or are there a few options? Also, I'm specifically ...
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Would it have been any more difficult to build the space station without the space shuttle?

I know that the Space Shuttle delivered a lot of modules and supplies to the International Space Station, but I also know that other rockets were just as capable of performing the task at that time ...
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Dish For Tracking and Communicating with ISS [duplicate]

It is already mentioned that ISS orbit the earth 15 times a day, how we design a dish network to stay communicate with it along its path? Are we build a dish in Atlantic Ocean too?
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What is this spinning object seen on a spacecraft above the ISS?

In the YouTube Trailer for the PBS program A Year in Space at 00:56 a small spinning object can be seen, attached to a spacecraft well above the ISS. I think the ...
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Expedition 53 group portrait - what's up with the cool shirts?

The image is from NASA Media Advisory M17-124 Georgia Students to Speak with NASA Astronauts on Space Station but there is no mention of the cool shirts. below: The six Expedition 53 crew members ...
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How much energy would it require to get the ISS to the moon? [duplicate]

How much energy would it require to get the ISS around or on the moon? And how much fuel would that require? And how many cargo missions would that require? And if that is not worth it, would it be ...
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How can astronauts on ISS deal with dental emergency?

Tooth ache is one of the more stupid and annoying disruptions to one's week. Dental hygiene can reduce the risk a lot, but only goes so far - for example, inflammation of roots of the tooth, with pus ...
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How long is the ISS out of reach of all ground stations?

This is a followup to a recent question and answer discussing ground-based monitoring of the International Space Station, specifically in the context of an astronaut crew that is all asleep. How ...
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What would the procedure be in the event of a collision warning on the ISS

In the event of something accidently being placed into the same orbital path as the ISS and on an imminent collision course, assuming it would be an object with the potential to cause some damage or ...
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1answer
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Does the ISS have a watch system with at least one person monitoring at all times

Does the ISS keep a standing watch with one person always up and awake and monitoring while the others sleep, or do all the astronauts sleep and work and they all get alerted in case of issues beyond ...
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ROS is running on the Robonaut, but is the Robonaut running on the ISS (post 2015)?

I was reading about the Robot Operating System ROS, and in particular the 2014 ROS.org article ROS running on ISS and wondering if the Robonaut is being actively tested on the ISS. Do they take it ...
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ISS as a Mars safe house?

Would it be possible to move the ISS to an orbit of the sun, say 120 million miles away from the sun, putting it halfway between Earth and Mars? If it was purged of oxygen there would be little or no ...
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How are the silicon PV cells constructed in the ISS's solar panels? Are they as flexible as they appear here?

My understanding is that the ISS's solar panels are silicon and double sided to maximize bang-for-the-pound (average power per kilogram transported to orbit). See Are the ISS US Segment solar arrays ...
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What does the ISS Mission control center do?

This related question asks about Mission Control's responsibilities during a hurricane. But there's a more general question underneath: what do the people in Mission Control do, what are their ...
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Why are these astronauts green?

The Space.com article Space Station Crew Returns to Earth Tonight: Watch It Live leads with a photo of three astronauts on the ISS that are backlit with bright green light, which can also be seen ...