Tag Archives: International Space Station

How the ISS recycles its air and water

Storage is hard to come by aboard the International Space Station. Even if a rocket had room to ferry thousands of pounds of water and oxygen to supply a six-month mission, you’d struggle to find anywhere to stash it. So engineers have devised creative ways to squeeze essentials from astronauts’ sweat, urine, and breath. But we’re not at total recovery yet. Right now, the ISS recycles 90 percent of its water—or more than 1,000 gallons annually—and 40 percent of the oxygen astronauts breathe. The rest comes up on resupply missions. This diagram shows how NASA gets so close to a self-­sustaining space home.

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A 3D Tour of the International Space Station For All of Us Wannabe Astronauts

There’s no shortage of footage showing what life aboard the International Space Station is like, but unless you’ve had a chance to spend some time there, the ISS’ sprawling and ever-expanding layout can be confusing. To help make better sense of it, the European Space Agency has created a narrated video tour of the space station—and it’s in 3D.

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INFLATABLE ADDITION TO THE SPACE STATION WILL LAUNCH IN APRIL

The first astronauts on Mars probably won’t live in a tin can like the International Space Station. Big, heavy structures are expensive to launch, and aren’t great at protecting against the radiation they’d be pummeled with on Mars. Instead, the first Martians might live in something like a pop-up tent.

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Astronaut Scott Kelly on Liquid Salt, a Stinky Station, and Sleeping in Freefall

There are lots of things most of us never contemplate when we fantasize about living in space: What happens to your arms when they don’t naturally fall at your sides? Do you keep your callouses when you aren’t walking? What’s it like to sleep in free fall?

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SpaceX, Orbital ATK, and Sierra Nevada All Just Booked Space Taxi Contracts with NASA

NASA announced that it has booked three private companies to ferry supplies up to the International Space Station through the next eight years—and the new contracts will allow them to add one new astronaut to their roster.

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