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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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2
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1answer
195 views

What are the tradeoffs of docking multiple small launches in orbit vs a single heavy launch?

What are the benefits of having a heavy lift launch vehicle, compared to using several smaller launches and assemble the spacecraft in orbit? There must've been more than a hundred successful ...
11
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1answer
2k views

What is the theoretical life of the ISS?

There still seems to be uncertainty about how long the ISS will remain flying, mainly due to political wrangling and budgetary concerns. Even the longest plans state that operations are not expected ...
10
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1answer
284 views

Does atmospheric drag or reboosting maneouvers affect the integrity of microgravity experiments aboard ISS?

ISS is in low Earth orbit, and as such, its orbital progress is gradually slowed by atmospheric drag and consequently requires occasional reboosts. It also has to be occasionally maneouvered to avoid ...
12
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4answers
509 views

What lessons in Space Station design have come out of the ISS?

The Soviets/Russian had a lot of station experience (Salyut, Almaz, Mir, and then ISS) that was used to build better and better stations. The US did Skylab and Shuttle/Spacelab/SpaceHab, and learned ...
15
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1answer
3k views

How fast can the crew evacuate the ISS? (ACRV)

An important advantage of having a space station in LEO, as opposed to a space ship orbiting another celestial object, is allegedly that the crew can be saved by a quick return to Earth. But what ...
13
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2answers
2k views

How similar are Soyuz and Progress?

Superficially the Soyuz and Progress spacecraft look very similar: (Soyuz TMA-7) (Progress M-52) So it would be easy to imagine that they share a common service module and/or orbital module. But ...
3
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2answers
864 views

Progress M-25M launched because of Antares?

Was Progress M-25M launched in response to Antares' catastrophic failure or were they 2 different launches, both planned to reach the ISS "separately"?
6
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2answers
342 views

What is the cost of taking something down from the ISS?

Launching instruments into orbit is expensive. When a spacecraft in orbit stops functioning, fixing it is normally not an option; nor will it be possible to retrieve the instrument for diagnosis. If ...
52
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7answers
35k views

Why is the breathing atmosphere of the ISS a standard atmosphere (at 1 atm containing nitrogen)?

The Wikipedia page for the International Space Station says that it has a fairly Earth-like, sea-level atmosphere: 21% oxygen, balance nitrogen at 101.3 kPa. Supposedly it's because a pure-oxygen ...
22
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3answers
23k views

Why does the International Space Station have a downward facing light?

I really enjoy watching the International Space Station fly over head. I subscribe to alerts so I know when it is in my area during the night time. I wouldn't be able to see it if it weren't for the ...
15
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1answer
871 views

Can a Boeing CST-100 be used to provide station reboost?

In the question: "Can Dragon, or Dragon V2 be used to boost the ISS orbit?" I asked if the Dragon V1/V2 can provide station reboost functionality that is currently provided by the ATV or Progress ...
15
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3answers
1k views

Can Dragon, or Dragon V2 be used to boost the ISS orbit?

One of the roles that Progress (and ATV) fulfill at the ISS is station reboost. This works because they can dock at the back of the Zvezda module, and boost inline with the station. I cannot find a ...
9
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1answer
1k views

Does the ISS medical inventory include a sun-tan/sunscreen lotion/cream?

Wikipedia writes to say Exposures on the ISS average 150 mSv per year, although frequent crew rotations minimize individual risk I assume here the crew aboard the space-station receive more ...
11
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1answer
4k views

How much of the International Space Station annual operating costs are due to human crew?

The 2013 NASA's Office of Inspector General (OIG) report, Extending the Operational Life of the International Space Station Until 2024, shows the ISS annual operating costs at $2.9 billion. How much ...
17
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3answers
1k views

My space station is filling with water

This question may be a bit silly, but this video of Chris Hadfield wringing out a wet washcloth on the ISS got me thinking... In the video you can clearly see drops of water floating away from the ...
3
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1answer
328 views

What is the power required to move the space station?

In March, the ISS had to be maneuvered to avoid space junk: NASA said Monday the space station had to dodge part of an old satellite. Sunday night's firing of on-board thrusters pushed the ...
5
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2answers
314 views

International Collaboration on Large-Scale Manned Space Exploration Projects

Many people would argue that the International Space Station is one of the most extraordinary human accomplishments in space exploration. Considering the short-lived space stations of the pre-ISS era, ...
7
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1answer
611 views

Is there any chance of a US based astronaut launch prior to 2017?

Since the last shuttle retired in 2011, US astronauts have been paying to ride to space on Russian rockets. According to recent news: BBC 16 September 2014 the earliest US launch is late 2017. ...
3
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1answer
151 views

Any idea what's in the SE sky from Denver around 12:40PM EDT?

There's something that's visible in the SE (roughly) from Denver now ~12:40PM. It seems to be tracking north. I tried taking a photo but my camera doesn't have the resolution. I'm really curious. I ...
10
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1answer
465 views

Plankton found outside the ISS, what is the substance in that claim?

There's been a news article around claiming that cosmonauts have found sea plankton on the outside of the international space station, for example here. Is there any substance to this claim? Have any ...
18
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1answer
798 views

Does the ISS team plan cargo flights when at half crew on purpose?

A number of times now, the cargo vehicles (Dragon, Cygnus, or HTV) seem to have arrived while the station was between crew switchovers. With indirect crew handovers, three crew depart in a Soyuz, ...
33
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3answers
16k views

Why doesn't ISS pass over the polar regions?

The ISS orbits West to East covering almost every part of the land on Earth, but excludes the polar regions. Why was this orbit chosen?
19
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1answer
2k views

Air in International Space Station

How do astronauts/cosmonauts manage the atmosphere at the International Space Station as their missions are years long, versus shorter flights? Do they recycle? Import via cargo vessels? Electrolyze ...
20
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1answer
693 views

Extending Use of ISS Beyond End of Mission

Given that the ISS will eventually come to the end of its mission (currently extended to 2020 (source)), would it be possible to re-purpose it for non-human space flight? To clarify: does the ...
5
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0answers
89 views

Do the ECLSS components aboard ISS deteriorate at the same rate as they would on Earth?

Just what the title states. Wikipedia writes to say about the ECLSS (Environment Control Life Support System) The highest priority for the ECLSS is the ISS atmosphere, but the system also ...
34
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2answers
7k views

Is the International Space Station “hackable”?

I was recently rereading this previous question of mine: What would happen if a mutiny occurred on the International Space Station? As I was considering different contingencies, the thought occurred ...
10
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1answer
2k views

Could the Hubble HST be saved by docking with the ISS?

I'm sure it cannot because I've never heard it suggested even on the pretty imaginative space flight communities on line. But the question is why, what makes it a bad idea. Some orbital data I find ...
8
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1answer
685 views

How are the US and Russian ventilation systems separated on the ISS?

A few days ago, a Russian water reclamation system took up smoking. The smoke that was produced traveled through the air ducts and was thus propagated throughout the station. According to the ...
14
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2answers
12k views

Why aren't the ISS HDEV cameras left on at night?

When watching the ISS HD Earth Viewing Experiment, I realized that they turn the cameras off when the ISS enters night. How often are they turned off when its dark? How come they aren't left on?
7
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1answer
694 views

If NASA's plan is to launch 4 astronauts to the ISS on CCtCAP vehicles, why design for 7?

The three CCtCAP competitors, Dream Chaser, CST-100, and Dragon are all designed to carry a crew of 7. Operationally, NASA plans on launching crews of 4, since that allows the station to support a ...
18
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1answer
5k views

How often does the ISS orbit align with the day/night terminator?

In the following image (coming from SAT-Flare) you can see the orbit of the ISS (in red) and the day/night terminator (in blue). The terminator separates night from day along the surface of the Earth. ...
15
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1answer
47k views

How long does it take to get to ISS?

The ISS is in orbit about 250 miles high, the students in this related question get 62 miles in less than a minute. This NASA Press release indicates the The Soyuz TMA-13M launch on May 2014 has a 6 ...
60
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5answers
20k views

Is a Moon-base inherently more dangerous than a Space Station?

Living in space is pretty dangerous, and the wonderful people of the ISS float around the Earth at risk of radiation and micrometeoroids. I'm curious if they're any more safe than if they simply were ...
10
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1answer
4k views

Could a gun fired inside the ISS rupture it?

We know there is at least one gun in the ISS the caliber seems to a state secret. According to Wikipedia and NASA large pdf there are over 100 shield configurations on the ISS. These would be ...
17
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3answers
5k views

How long can a 2 person crew survive on ISS totally cut from Earth?

Something goes bad on Earth, ISS is cut from any kind of supply and the escape pods can't be used. If there are 2 people on board at that time, how long can they survive there? Did someone write a ...
12
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1answer
559 views

Can the ISS be brought to a long term storage orbit using existing NEXT ion engines?

To throw away an investment in space infra-structure the size of the ISS seems an incredible waste. Even if there is only a limited chance of ever using it again, the probability of this happening ...
4
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1answer
236 views

What options exist for crew transfers to the ISS?

Since the retirement of the Space Shuttles, all crew transfers from and to the ISS are performed using the Russian Soyuz crafts launched with the launch system of the same name. Should Russia ...
8
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1answer
458 views

What does Zvezda alone lack from being a capable space station?

A recent discussion on the ISS has raised some questions in my mind about Zvezda: Can the US Part of ISS survive independent of the Russian? What does Zvezda alone lack from being a capable space ...
4
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1answer
832 views

Do meteor showers from 209P/LINEAR cometary debris pose a threat to the ISS and other Earth-orbiting satellites?

This is a somewhat similar question to What risk management options are available for Mars orbiters and rovers to mitigate threat of impacting with Siding Spring cometary debris?, only this time much ...
25
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3answers
5k views

Can the US Part of ISS survive independent of the Russian?

A new story came out today about Russia potentially preventing the US from using the ISS. One of the claims made was: "The Russian segment [of ISS] can exist independently from the American one. The U....
16
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1answer
2k views

How many and/or what kind of animals have ever been on the ISS?

I am doing a science project for school and i was wondering if anybody could help me out. I need to know how many and what kinds of animals have been on the iss.
16
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3answers
3k views

Can you make out the shape of the ISS with the unaided eye as it passes overhead?

Someone claimed to me that they could see the actual shape of the ISS as it passed overhead without use of any optical device. I would think this isn't possible since it is only about 100 meters wide ...
15
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6answers
18k views

Is there a realistic looking ISS scale model available somewhere?

I'm looking for a serious, realistic looking scale model of the International Space Station to build at home. Even better, if it would include some electronics. I'm open to free or commercial ...
4
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2answers
1k views

What are the MDM's on the ISS, and how many different kinds are there?

In the prelude for SpaceX CRS-3 mission, the failure of a Multiplexer-Demultiplexer (MDM) on the International Space Station (ISS) seems to be a real concern for launching. In the pre-launch press ...
13
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3answers
11k views

What propulsion methods does the ISS use for station-keeping?

The International Space Station is constantly losing orbital energy due to atmospheric drag. How does station-keeping work for the ISS? What sort of propulsion system is used to keep it in the desired ...
27
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1answer
21k views

How is the unwanted cold welding prevented in space?

Metallic surfaces touching in the vacuum can stick to each other and fuse. This is known as the "cold welding" and it seems to be a possible issue in space if it happens where it should not. It was ...
12
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2answers
16k views

Does ISS follow Earth's rotation?

Is ISS orbiting with or against the rotation of Earth? Is it important in any aspect for the space station?
4
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1answer
520 views

Position of shuttle viz iss

Is the shuttle ahead of the ISS in the orbit before docking. Does the international space station catchup with the shuttle in the same orbit?
5
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1answer
443 views

What effect may the tensions between the US and Russia have on the ISS?

The tensions between the US and Russia are currently growing. What effects (if any) can these tensions have on day-to-day operations on the International Space Station, or any other joint ...
43
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7answers
44k views

Can I see the ISS from the surface with the naked eye?

Can I see the International Space Station (ISS) from the surface with the naked eye? If yes, how can I determine that it really is the ISS?