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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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27
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What are the procedures aboard the ISS in the eventuality of a loss of a crew member?

So far, all the space exploration related events that resulted in Loss of Crew (LOC) took a complete crew, and as far as we're aware, no accident in space that resulted in loss of human life, be it ...
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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 ...
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August 30th 2018 Soyuz leak, any dangers for re-entry?

On August 30th 2018, Soyuz MS-09 had a leak that was fixed by the ISS crew (source). Does the leak/fix have any consequences on using the Soyuz for returning to Earth? Would the fix hold the stress ...
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ISS nuts and bolts; Metric, SAE or both?

The International Space Station (ISS) is a joint construction of many countries around the world. Most of whom use the metric system for measuring including sizing of bolts, nuts and fasteners. ...
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Does the International Space Station get TV?

For obvious reasons the ISS cannot get cable TV. Can the ISS get the new digital air TV or satellite TV using an issued dish and receiver like a house? How would that be done compared to how it is ...
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How exactly will the ISS die in 2025?

According to: ”Moreover, the ISS end of life might come in 2025, and assuming you need a few years to graduate, more to get a degree, work experience, get hired, do the training... The ISS might ...
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Why did Salyut 7 freeze over, while ISS requires massive cooling system?

The cosmonauts from Soyuz T-13 mission "wore winter garb, including fur-lined hats, as they entered the station." "Frost covered the walls and apparatus. " Essentially, the heat balance of Salyut 7 ...
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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....
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Why has the ISS not been left unmanned?

I found this question, and I was wondering why the ISS is constantly manned (Except for some hours during particular situations). Is that a technical problem? Is it to guarantee safety? Or just ...
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How could the 2018-08-30 Soyuz MS-09 / ISS leak be so slow?

The leak reportedly led the ISS to lose 0.8 millibars of air pressure per hour, which is both big considering what was at stake and low for a 2-mm hole when the outside is near to complete vacuum. Am ...
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How quickly could a space agency get to the ISS in case of an emergency?

Here's the situation: The ISS suffered from some kind of catastrophic failure. The crew is unharmed, but the nature of the failure includes: The destruction of any present vehicles capable of ...
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How hard do you have to throw something off the ISS to make it deorbit?

During Expedition 41 Reid Wiseman and Alexander Gerst replaced a failed pump on the outside of the ISS. I am guessing they took the broken pump back inside the ISS and returned it to earth in one of ...
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What is the purpose of the rotating dish antenna on the ISS

I just saw some footage of the ISS in which a dish antenna could be seen, constantly rotating. The dish looked more-or-less parabolic, meaning that it is presumably sending/receiving along a fairly ...
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What kind of laptops do ISS astronauts use?

In many videos of the ISS, you can see tethered laptops all over the place. Presumably these are heavily customised for space. What kinds of customisation do they need? Are they off-the-shelf laptops ...
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Why is artificial gravity not included on space stations? [duplicate]

I'm wondering why artificial gravity is not included on the ISS, or on the currently planned OPSEK. There are long-term health effects of weightlessness, which would be avoided, using artificial ...
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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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What is the difference between docking and berthing on the ISS?

People often talk about docking and berthing. They both seem to be connecting a spacecraft to the ISS, yet seem to be very different. Why?
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What is the function of this (apparently) fixed dish on the ISS?

I saw this image in Popular Science, one of the example photos from the book by astronaut/photographer/astrophotographer(?) Donald Pettit. It's beautiful and impressive not only from a color/...
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Are all rockets sent to ISS blessed by a priest?

When the last batch of astronauts were sent to ISS, I read that the crew and rocket were blessed by a priest. Was this a one-time thing, or is it standard?
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Air temperature and humidity inside the ISS

The International Space Station being an artificial habitat for humans; it seems reasonable to assume the air temperature, and humidity levels are maintained at well-defined levels. What are the air ...
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How often are ISS computers (MDMs) replaced?

The electronic "heart" of the International Space Station are the Multiplexers-Demultiplexers (MDMs) located within & outside the pressurized modules. How often are they replaced? (An ideal ...
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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 ...
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How did Soyuz MS-04 reach the ISS in only 6 hours?

The Wikipedia Article on Soyuz MS-04 says: It is the first of the Soyuz MS series to rendezvous with the Station in approximately 6 hours, instead of the 2 day orbital rendezvous used for the ...
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Will a Dragon v2 ever bring 7 astronauts to the ISS?

The Dragon v2 has 7 seats whereas the Soyuz only has 3. But the Soyuz uses all 3 seats for astronauts/cosmonauts to bring to the ISS. I suspect that Dragon v2 will bring 3-4 people to the ISS in one ...
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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 long does it take to get from a spacewalk to being inside the ISS and out of your suit in an emergency?

I just saw a show that featured an incident in which an astronaut on a spacewalk to install the Canada 2 arm on the ISS was temporarily blinded by contaminated water inside his helmet. His colleague ...
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Is any space station planned to be put in orbit in decade 2014-2024?

ISS will be closed by 2020. Are there any other space stations planned to be put in orbit in decade 2014-2024 that have really chances to be built?
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Is the cupola, on the inside of the ISS, cold or warm to the touch?

Does the temperature of the surface of the cupola vary when the ISS is in Earth's shadow, compared to when it is on day side of the Earth? Is it cold to the touch when the ISS in the shadow?
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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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Why aren't the 'bedrooms' aboard the ISS also the escape pods?

If ISS was designed this way, couldn't the astronauts have a quick escape if the ISS is destroyed (severe meteor shower, re-entry, uncontrollable fire, explosive decompression, etc.) while they are ...
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Was water ever taken outside a spacecraft?

Has an astronaut (or cosmonaut) taken water out of a spacecraft to see if it boils or freezes?
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What are these green text/line displays shown during the livestream of Crew Dragon's approach to dock with the ISS?

During the livestream of Crew Dragon's approach to docking, at 6:24 a laptop display is shown with lots of green text and a camera view of the International Space Station. What's going on?
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Why doesn't the ISS start to spin if people walk inside?

I have read that prior to launch all people and tools are fastened down to prevent a rocket from losing the balance. Why doesn't the ISS begin to spin as astronauts are walking inside of it? Or is ...
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Music played in space

Besides the Curiosity rovers's rendition of Happy Birthday and Chris Hadfields guitar playing aboard the ISS, is there a list of music played in space live (robots playing music counts too)? Note: ...
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Why did Soyuz TMA-18M take two days to reach the ISS?

Typically, a Soyuz crew vehicle takes 4 orbits to reach the ISS, but the Soyuz TMA-18M took 34 orbits or 2 days to reach it. Why is there so much variation from typical missions?
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How are hair and beard lengths maintained in space?

From the question What are the regulations governing (against) beards in space? we know that hair and beard length are not regulated on the ISS. For the most part pictures indicate both men and women ...
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What are the reasons Soyuz's lifespan in orbit is limited?

Following the recent Soyuz failure news, I found out that the currently docked Soyuz expires in the foreseeable future, leaving the crew with no means to return back to Earth. What are the reasons ...
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Does long-term residence on the ISS affect eyesight?

Life on a space station is very confined. For months on end, astronauts are kept in a structure that's about the size of a football field on the outside and much smaller on the inside. The nearest ...
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How is the International Space Station protected against orbital debris?

ISS is at an altitude of about 400 km (approximately). But there will be some of space debris at that altitude (since some of the space debris orbits decay over time). So the debris has a probability ...
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What is the procedure if communication with the ISS is lost for an extended period?

Between ground control and the ISS there is the occasional short communications loss which they are obviously able to deal with, but is there a procedure to follow if the communication is lost for ...
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Do windows in space stations, the space shuttle, other spacecraft have practical usage?

As we know, cars need a front window because drivers need to see the road to control the car, but how about the windows in space shuttles? As far as I know, the orbits of ISS or other space devices ...
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How long would ISS stay in orbit if it didn't get reboosts?

Apparently ISS is so close to Earth's atmosphere that it requires periodical boosts to stay in orbit. If the station were completely abandoned and it wouldn't get the boosts anymore, how long would it ...
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What is the cost of keeping the ISS in orbit

The plan for the ISS upon decomissioning is to deorbit the structure and let it fall into the ocean. I get that we do not want extra debris in orbit but I would think that leaving the structure in ...
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How are EVA's in LEO affected by being at the night side of Earth?

Orbital periods in LEO are quite short, about 92 minutes for the ISS. So every other almost 46 minutes it is in Earth's shadow. Not only is it then out of direct sunlight, I suppose that the night ...
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How many times were there thirteen people inside the ISS? Is it hard on the station?

I just saw this photo in @SF.'s answer It is ISS023-E-023513 STS-131 and Expedition 23. The full caption is below. Are there really 13 people on the ISS at one time? Is STS-131 the only shuttle ...
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Is there an ISS replacement planned?

Are there plans for another space station when the ISS is deorbited or de-manned? What are the details of these plans, if any? Bonus: How would a space station be built without the Space Shuttle?
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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 ...
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What eliminates the velocity when occupants return from ISS to earth, and how much?

The ISS has an orbital velocity of ~28000 km/h; the velocity $v$ relative to the landing site of the descent module is probably even higher than that most of the time. Once the occupants have landed, ...
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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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Do astronauts on board the ISS have a backup spacesuit?

Do astronauts on the International Space Station have a backup spacesuit with them so that they could use it in case of any malfunction with one of the spacesuits? If so, how many spacesuits does ...