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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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1answer
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How are the astronauts in the ISS protected from solar flares?

The Sun emits electromagnetic radiation which may consist of UV, IR, X-rays and also the charge particles that are emitted from the sun which are harmful to humans. But during intense solar flares it ...
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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 ...
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To what extent are the US modules of ISS based on the Spacelab design?

Various sources, for example the Spacelab wikipedia page, report that several modules used in American sector of the ISS are based on the Spacelab legacy. To what extent has its legacy been used? ...
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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 ...
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Why is the Pressurized Mating Adapter slanted?

There are three of these on the ISS. One connects the Russian modules to the rest. One was used for docking the shuttles. One... kinda just sits there, with modules that were to be berthed canceled. (...
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How many docking/berthing operations can a CBM port tolerate?

Generally the CBM ports were meant to connect new space station nodes together. The nadir port on Harmony (Node 2) has been used for more berthings than any other that I am aware of. As of Jan 2014,...
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Does having only 3 people on the ISS create workload problems?

There are a couple of quick ways to check the number of people in space, right now there are 3. Usually the ISS has a crew of 6. The launch planned for the other 3 crew was delayed indefinitely due to ...
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How is the space station's interior cleaned?

The ISS is a pretty messy place, as in the image here. I have a cable mess under my desk that quickly traps dust and takes some effort to be cleaned. The ISS is much worse. And it has been crewed ...
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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?
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Have space station modules already been replaced?

After reading this question, I understand that it is simpler to replace a space station than to repair it in order to continue its activity. All modules in a space station may not have the same ...
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Which operating systems is the International Space Station running?

I've seen some of the articles mention that ISS switched from Windows to Linux. But that's just considering the laptops. What OS are the other computers present on ISS running? I would think that e.g. ...
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How does electrical safety system work on ISS?

Is there any possibility that the power consumption is greater than power supply on ISS? What happens (or potentially would happen) if we plug too many electric devices so that ISS couldn't handle it? ...
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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 ...
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What happened to the HDEV ISS Experiment? Is it over?

I've been checking on and off for a few weeks now and the offline logo seems to be always there. Is the program over? Is there another website that shows current views? Thanks for your time!
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How precisely do we know mass of the ISS?

Everyone knows that in space, every gram counts. Knowing how much mass an orbital object has is necessary for precise motion calculations. So how precisely do we know the mass of ISS? I'm sure we can ...
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When was the last time 9 people were on the ISS?

Currently (September 4, 2015) there is a complement of 9 people aboard the ISS. This will change a week from now, when 3 of those people return to Earth. When was the last time the ISS had 9 people ...
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What is so difficult about the ISS zero propellant maneuver?

Nazareth Bedrossian (from Draper Laboratory) et al. describe the ZPM in this paper. What I want to know is: Why is planning and executing the maneuver so difficult it had not been done before 2007? ...
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Where should I look in ISS to find mouldy food?

Food is ubiquitous. All organisms known so far need food, and it is commonly believed all organisms unknown need it to. Size matters not - Eating is. Consumption continues ad infinitum. Failure to ...
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How does an astronaut pack for the ISS?

This article talks about a 'Personal Preference Kit;, a bag measuring 5" x 8" x 2", that could weigh no more than 1.5 lbs. It was the sole space an astronaut could use for personal items. But it ...
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663 views

Can astronauts inside ISS hear their crewmates doing EVAs?

I was just watching a video of two astronauts doing an EVA on ISS to install some things. As I saw how they moved around the outside of the ISS using handrails and other things to grab, I was ...
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Astronaut orientation etiquette

How does the microgravity environment on the ISS change how people interact or converse? Is it polite or common to be oriented the same direction as who you're talking to? Also, when you see new ...
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How do astronauts take pictures from outside the ISS?

I've seen multiple images taken from outside the Space Station like this one or this one and even timelapses from far outside showing the solar panels moving over time. Is there a satellite ...
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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 ...
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What is Earthy controlling in the ISS cupola?

ScienceAlert.com's Astronauts on The Space Station Liked SpaceX's 'Earthy' Toy So Much They Kidnapped It shows a series of photos of Earthy, the new plushy member of the ISS crew. In the photo below ...
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Why does the ISS crew wear a dust mask in BEAM?

This video from NASA shows Jeff Williams entering BEAM for the first time. He's wearing a simple dust mask. Why is that? If there is concern about floating particles, wouldn't there be a concern with ...
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What is the ISS drag?

ISS constantly loses altitude to air drag and other forces (tidal, electromagnetic). While finding that rate in the sources isn't that hard, with orbital mechanics of altitude loss actually increasing ...
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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 ...
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Artificial Gravity on board the ISS and its derivatives

Was the implementation of artificial gravity ever seriously considered for use on board the ISS and its derivatives? If not, why?
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Is this ginormous porthole a permanent feature of the ISS or “just passing through”?

This tweet from Expedition 51/52 astronaut Jack Fischer admires the great view straight down from the ginormous Russian porthole of the Progress cargo vehicle on the ISS. I don't really understand ...
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What is the accuracy / uncertainty of Two Line Elements (TLEs)?

I use TLE sets supplied on this website to find the future position of satellites (well usually just the ISS) using the SGP4 propagation method implemented in C++. My question is: What is the ...
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470 views

How much delta-v can be achieved by venting the ISS atmosphere?

A sort-of follow-up to What do the astronauts do whilst the air-lock cycles? The ISS fact-sheet writes to say Pressurized Volume: 32,333 cubic feet (916 cubic meters) Elsewhere on the stack are ...
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768 views

Are the power systems on the US and Russian segments of the ISS similar/compatible?

Clearly there is some method of power transfer between the US Segment with the honking big arrays, to the Russian segment. But since the Russian segment is basically Mir 2 (Zvezda, and an FGB tug ...
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What is the cause of discoloration along the edges of the Quest Joint Airlock thermal cover?

I've noticed this discoloration / stains / burn marks along the edges of the Quest Joint Airlock thermal cover on the hatch before, but they seem even more pronounced and contrasting with the cover's ...
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838 views

How would civilians send snacks to the ISS crew?

Today I saw a video in which ESA astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti teaches us how to make pitas in space, and invites us to try to make them at home. I understand that much of the food on the ISS is ...
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Decoding Russian ISS telemetry

While the American segment of the ISS has data published on-line (http://spacestationlive.nasa.gov), the same cannot be said about the Russian segment. It is known that telemetry is transmitted to ...
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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 ...
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How do orbital boosts affect the structural integrity of the ISS?

I've become curious of this question since my time on KSP, and searches have not rendered much. In the simulator, building large stations even without the micro atmosphere being simulated, can cause ...
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is it possible to use mechanical pencil instead of space pen in ISS?

Is it possible to use mechanical pencil instead of space pen and pencil in International Space Station ?
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Why couldn't Luca Parmitano just drink that water?

Of course, I am asking about the EVA incident where the Luca's spacesuit malfunctioned and his helmet filled up with water nearly drowning him. I'm really sorry, I am not assuming the mission centre ...
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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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Do astronauts on ISS get fresh perishable goods with deliveries?

The usual fare for ISS has very long expiration dates, to last between deliveries, months apart. That, combined with other requirements (no crumbs/powders, no cooking, flatulence-safe etc) ...
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How does ISS protect astronauts from Coronal Mass Ejections?

The related question's answer tells about the mitigation procedures for the duration of a 'proton storm'. In particular, The ISS crew did receive a Solar weather warning several times and were ...
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When does the ISS have a loss-of-signal?

The ISS has a camera mounted streaming live video from space (HDEV). From time to time, there is a blue screen visible, which is noted to be during times of "loss of signal". What exactly defines a "...
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Do astronauts aboard ISS always follow orders?

There have been many documented cases of astronauts not following direct orders during the Skylab and Apollo missions. Some of these have been publicly reprimanded but most have not. Most of the ...
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Are there any humanoid robots on board the ISS?

Are there any humanoid robots on board the International Space Station to help out its astronaut occupants? If not, are there any plans to send humanoid robots to the ISS?
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Melanized fungi on the ISS - are they 'enjoying' the elevated radiation levels there?

The end of this excellent answer lead me to Wikipedia which linked to The blacker the better… especially in Chernobyl and Chernobyl Fungus Feeds On Radiation. One passage in 'blacker the better' ...
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Could the space shuttle be permanently left in orbit as a space station?

Could the space shuttles have been left in space and used as temporarily visited space stations? One could put a modified spacehab in the cargo bay, with solar panels and with which the Soyuz/Dragon ...
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What kind of biological research does the ISS do?

As per this link, the International Space Station (ISS) continues to provide research in such fields as biology. What kind of biological research is being done on the ISS, considering there is no life ...
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What are the windows on the Russian segement of the ISS made of?

Presumably the various windows on the different modules of the ISS are consistent on the different segments of the ISS. What are the windows on the Russian Segment made out of? Do they have special ...
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Do ISS astronauts occasionally let the sunshine in for a natural light “fix”?

I looked for images of a nice sunlit ISS crew cabin interior and predictably didn't have much luck. Most hits were mentions of the sunlight the astronaut would leave behind on earth, or enjoy again ...