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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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Does ISS stop rotation for docking?

A question from 3 years ago got an answer that would be a great answer to a different question (and concluded with a comment that more would be posted later.) Let me re-ask, making the question ...
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Why does SpaceX not label the Dragon capsules externally?

Looking at a great answer to a question about Dragons berthing orientation at the ISS which shows images of the 5 CRS Dragons berthed to the ISS one thing struck me. There looks to be no easy way to ...
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What will be NASA Policy on backup ISS docking/berthing ports, once commercial crew is up and running?

The news that Boeing will bid the CST-100 as a Commercial Resupply Services 2 (CRS-2) vehicle raises a question: will they be using a docking port, to a PMA or berthing to a CBM port? The problem is ...
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Fish in space: what were the results?

I've been interested in the Japanese experiment on the ISS involving raising fish in space, but in all my reading the results seem a bit ambiguous/conflicting (depending on source). What are the ...
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With one out of two Thermal Control Systems on ISS malfunctioning, how long can Loop B keep up with increased load?

International Space Station (ISS) is in trouble again. One of the two Thermal Control System (TCS) loops (Loop A) is malfunctioning due to a troublesome Flow Control Valve (FCV). This is nothing new ...
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Has dependent one-carbon metabolic pathway been successfully linked to ocular health of astronauts?

NASA is pretty active in investigating deteriorated vision issues of astronauts that, I guess, are most frequently linked to the loss of intracranial blood pressure due to microgravity with their ...
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How is Dragon-v2 prepared for being docked for months at ISS?

The Dragon spacecraft is being certified for manned spaceflight. If it's to replace Soyuz, though, it will have to serve as an escape pod for the crew. The current delivery missions are proving its ...
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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 ...
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Why all the loose wires in the ISS? [duplicate]

I took the virtual tour of the ISS - and my first impression was "What a mess!" Okay, I understand any elements should be easy to move; any "decorative" elements like locker doors add unnecessary ...
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Were any toxic metals used in the International Space Station?

Have any of the following metals been used in the ISS? Lead: used in some batteries, and in many types of solder. Mercury: used in some batteries, and in tilt switches (which I would expect have no ...
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Could you take a Cessna from the ISS to Earth?

The shuttle had a empty gross weight of 172,000 lb (78,000 kg), and the only feasible way shedding the 27,724 kilometres (17,227 mi) per hour, of the relative speed of the ISS is Aerobraking. A four ...
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Why was there a miniature bread on the ISS?

In the NASA images and video library there is a image of a miniature bread floating in ISS node 1 (expedition 34 in 2013). Unfortunately I wasn't able to find any information on the experiment or ...
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How often has the ISS been physically vacant (un-manned)?

Currently six great folks are working in the International Space Station (ISS). I am wondering if it is ever vacant and if there's a rule of thumb (magnitude of order of days, an average or anything) ...
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What if any US laws apply on the ISS?

This question comes from an answer at Why is there a pregnancy test kit on the ISS? that says "US medical privacy laws" apply on the ISS. These US laws are for the most part addressed at http://www....
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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?
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Plans for ISS crew to enter Crew Dragon?

Are there any plans for ISS crew to enter the Dragon V2 while it is docked during the upcoming Crew Dragon Demo 1 mission?
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Is there a better way for astronauts to bathe?

On the ISS each astronaut gets a packaged wet towel every two days, two dry towels and two washcloths a week, and 3 small packets of moist napkins every two days with which to wash themselves. At the ...
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Could a harpoon-like gun be used by an astronaut to stop drifting away from a ship?

I saw the movie Gravity. Spoiler alert, hover with your mouse over the yellow bar below to reveal a part of the movie's plot: Why can't they have a gun kind-of thing with a string/rope? One end of ...
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What is this instrument on the ISS?

In this image (NASA original source) from the International Space Station. what is the "lightning rod"-like instrument at the end of the mast in the upper right of the photo?
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Is there any other reason to split ISS to Russian and NASA side than pure logical?

While browsing this site, I saw several references to "Russian side of ISS" and several questions arised in my head. The root question is: Is there any other reason to split ISS to Russian and NASA ...
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What is the orbital boost acceleration of the ISS?

How much acceleration does the International Space Station experience during its orbital adjustment boosts? How much thrust and for how long? Bonus question: what is the highest acceleration that the ...
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How are hatches set up in the common berthing mechanism (CBM)?

I have read about the common berthing mechanism on ISS and how the attachment process works and how the pressure seal is established, and I think I have that part figured out. There is a passive CBM ...
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Growing food in space

I can't find info on NASA site, but saw a picture of romaine on ISS and am wondering how it maintains its shape in zero-gravity- why doesn't it spread out, what makes it grow up...?
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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 ...
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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 ...
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When a new module is added to the ISS, do they still do the “Shake” test?

I recall reading, that when Mir would get a new module added, after it was docked, a cosmonaut would stand in, feet on one wall, hands on the other, and try to shake it, to ensure the docking seal was ...
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Do astronauts take any pills to battle bone density loss?

Is the effect of micro-gravity on bone structure similar to osteoporosis? If so, do they often take simple pills like calcium or more advance medicine such as ones listed here? Lastly, are they ...
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If mice escaped on the International Space Station, could they live and thrive?

The SciNews video Mice aboard the International Space Station is fun to watch for those tired of the same old rocket launch videos. Behavior of mice aboard the International Space Station 20 ...
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Liquids Plumbing on board

When a cargo mission is flown toward the ISS, there are at least four different kinds of liquids that may need to be moved into/out of the station: Propellant for Zvezda's thrusters Water Wastewater ...
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Could the ISS pressurized elements withstand a full depressurization?

In case of necessity -- for example in case of fire or contamination -- is it possible for any pressurized element of the ISS to be exposed to vacuum? If all compartments and airlocks were to be ...
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How does the sabatier system reduce water shipments to the ISS?

So I thought I'd answered my own question (How close is the ISS to a closed system?), but I just realized there's a missing piece. This is the chemical equation for how hydrogen, oxygen, and carbon ...
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How is ISS commander chosen?

I've been looking at the ISS's List of International Space Station expeditions, and I'm curious about how the commanders are chosen. I can't really find anything that stands out. Sometimes the ...
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If all people come home from the ISS for how long would it remain usable?

I assume that if everyone left the ISS, there is a method that can be used to put people back on it. For example to open the “door” from the outside. However how long could the ISS remain ...
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How many airlocks does the ISS have?

In this context, I mean, a way to get out of the station, without depressurizing the entire station. The obvious ones are: Quest airlock on Unity (Node 1). Pirs (DC-1) airlock Does Poisk (DC-2? Or ...
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28V vs. 124V on the ISS

Apparently the US segment of the ISS runs on 124v DC, while the Russian segment is on 28v DC. Why the difference? I understand it is often safer to have several different voltages rather than one, but ...
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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 ...
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What is a brake handle on the ISS crew equipment carts?

Outside the International Space Station, there is a device called a brake handle on the crew equipment carts. I couldn't imagine that device, what is it and what is it for? I found it in the book of ...
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Does any site track the mass of the ISS?

Watching the daily ISS live broadcast from NASA the PRO mentioned the specific mass of the ISS complex (today) and what it would be when the Soyuz leaves shortly. One can find out the mass of each ...
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How does automated docking work and why isn't it used more often?

It seems on every flight to the ISS for either people or just cargo, there is always a big deal over manual docking, lots of back and forth over comms, pinpointing the right spot, slowing down in a ...
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Why does the ISS points always the same side towards the Earth?

I recently got into a twitter discussion over the ISS attitude. The point of the discussion is the attitude that the ISS mantains while orbiting around the Earth. From my reminescences of Oribital ...
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How steady is the atmospheric drag force experienced by the ISS?

Suppose one wanted to modulate the power of a hypothetical, powerful ion thruster on the ISS to continuously compensate the atmospheric drag force in order to achieve near-perfect free-fall conditions ...
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Why do Astro/Cosmonauts refer to things as Russian or American?

I'm watching CSA videos, and have watched numerous documentaries before, and have noticed that both Astronauts and Cosmonauts alike aboard the ISS tend to refer to something as either Russian, or ...
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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 ...
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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 is the ISS helpful for launching cubesats and minisats?

The ISS space station orbits at an inclination of about 50 degrees. That's in between polar orbit, which would be useful for Earth observations, and the ecliptic which would be useful for synchronous ...
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Is water on-board space-craft (such as ISS) rationed?

An NIH abstract writes to say A daily water intake of 3.7 L for adult men and 2.7 L for adult women meets the needs of the vast majority of persons. Is water on-board space-craft (such as ISS, ...
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What is Crew Dragon approaching in this picture?

Crew Dragon (without a crew) just docked to the ISS for the first time last night. Most of the news reports on it are using the below photo. I thought it was supposed to dock to the Harmony module's ...
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How close is the ISS to a closed system, in terms of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen?

I found this diagram of the ISS ECLSS material flow and noticed the $CO_2$ being vented off the station. source Now, I understand this is outdated since they added a Sabatier reaction system to ...
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Did all of the Space Shuttles dock with multiple space stations or crewed spacecraft?

For example, the Space Shuttle Endeavour did dock with both MIR (bringing apple seeds) and the ISS. Did all of the shuttles dock with more than one space station and/or crewed spacecraft? above: ...
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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 ...