November 20, 2013

The International Space Station is a stronghold of the mankind on the orbit. It goes round the Earth 16 times a day at the height of about 400 km. The ISS is the largest flying object, designed by leading space countries. “Man-made star” weighting more than 400 tons is a complex scientific and technical object and the largest orbital station throughout the history of mankind.

The ISS owes its creation to several historical space objects: first orbital stations being a scientific breakthrough each. “Salut” space laboratory-stations were the first to gain constant orbital velocity of 28000 km per hour. Soyuz-Apollo program in its turn laid the basis for future international cooperation, while Mir space station facilitated exploration of the work in the open space.

In March 1993 Russian Space Agency Director General Yuri Koptev and Energia Scientific Development and Production Center General Designer Yuri Semenov suggested NASA Head Daniel Goldin a project on International Space Station creation. After the project was approved in 1994 the first modules designing began. “The birthday” of the ISS is considered to be on November 20, 1998 when “Proton” booster with “Zarya” functional cargo block that has become the first element of new station was launched from Baikonur spaceport. On December 7, 1998 “Endeavor” shuttle docked American “Unity” segment to “Zarya” module, on July 26, 2000 “Zvezda” service module was docked to “Zarya” and became the centre of Russian segment. In November 2000 Soyuz TM-31 brought the first mission crew to the ISS.

The crew consisted of William McMichael Shepherd (ISS commander, Soyuz TM-31 flight engineer), Yuri Pavlovich Gidzenko (ISS flight engineer, Soyuz TM-31commander) and Sergey Konstantinovich Krikalev (ISS flight engineer, Soyuz TM-31 flight engineer). Within 15 years 11 more modules were sent to the ISS : American “Destiny”scientific module, European “Calambus” scientific module, Japanese “Kibo” module and others.

The  ISS works using solar arrays energy. When it flies across the solar part of the orbit wide arrays accumulate solar energy which is used when the station flies in the shadow. Due to the satellites and other modern means of communication ISS stays in constant contact with the Earth. The main Mission Control Centers are situated in Huston (USA) and Korolev (Moscow region, Russia).

The ISS is also a laboratory testing new technologies. A great deal of experiments requiring unique conditions of space flight such as Zero-G, vacuum, space radiation are conducted onboard the ISS. Most part of materials and devices we are using now were first tested onboard the ISS: teflon, microwave ovens, metal allegations, water regeneration systems, medicines and vaccines.
Photos made from space help farming and combating  natural disasters. ISS proves that people can stay in space for quite a long period of time. Due to ISS existence we may study the working abilities and endurance of human organism. Day after day ISS gives us new knowledge and discoveries.

All great journeys started with a small step and the ISS may become an outpost for Moon, Mars and other distant corners of the Universe exploration.

More from this category:
July 15, 2013

Soyuz TMA-10M manned spacecraft was delivered from Korolev-city, Moscow region to Toretam railway station on Saturday. “The train was transferred to the spaceport inner railway…

full story
June 18, 2014

Preparation for the launch of Soyuz-ST-B with O3b space device  are under way at Soyuz launching pad in Guiana space centre (French Guiana). At the…

full story
September 23, 2013

Soyuz-FG booster was installed on the launch pad #1 (Gagarin launchpad). On September 26,2013 the booster will orbit SoyuzTMA-10M spacecraft with 37/38 ISS mission crew…

full story
March 25, 2015

Several days later Russia’s Soyuz TMA-16M spacecraft will be orbited by SoyuzFG booster. The ISS expedition 43/44 crew of  Russian cosmonauts Gennady Padalka an Mikhail Kornienko…

full story
April 26, 2013

According to press-service of GCTC, on Thursday a session of State Medical Board took place in the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center. Medical Board analyzed the data…

full story
March 15, 2019

The crew of the “Soyuz MS-12” spacecraft on March 15, 2019, at 06:10 Moscow time, went on board of the International Space Station (ISS). Members…

full story
September 15, 2021

34 OneWeb communication system satellites  launched from Baikonur with the help of Soyuz-2.1b booster and Fregat upper stage successfully inserted into the final orbit. The…

full story
November 10, 2015

The Americans suggested Russia increasing the quantity of one-year ISS missions so that 12 missions have accomplished experiments to prepare for long-distance spaceflights by 2024,…

full story