How To Fly A Spaceship To The ISS: Orbital Mechanics And A Fancy Stick

How do astronauts get from Earth to the International Space Station? Well, in a Soyuz spacecraft, of course. But do you know what kind of path the Soyuz takes to rendezvous with humanity's orbital outpost? It's probably not what you think. » 3/26/15 12:01am 3/26/15 12:01am

Ask An Astronaut All Your Questions About Life Aboard the Space Station

Last week, Astronaut Butch Wilmore was on the International Space Station. This afternoon, he's right here answering your questions. He and Niki Werkheiser, head of NASA's 3D printing project, can talk about 3D printers in space, life aboard the ISS, and anything else you want to know! » 3/19/15 4:00pm 3/19/15 4:00pm

This Neat Map of ISS Shows Where AstroSamantha Takes Her Space Photos

Geotagging on the International Space Station? Almost! This interactive map collects and pins all of ESA astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti's gorgeous orbital photos. » 3/13/15 3:13pm 3/13/15 3:13pm

Here Is What War Looks Like From Space

This image, taken by Expedition 41 aboard the International Space Station, looks like the fine artwork of some extra-terrestrial, but it's actually decades old scarred earth and entrenchments of warfare along the Iraq/Iran border. » 2/01/15 8:00pm 2/01/15 8:00pm

Neat time-lapse of the assembly of the International Space Station

Enjoy this neat time-lapse of all the International Space Station modules assembled since 1998 because, as the international tension between East and West continues, it's starting to become clear that it won't survive beyond its already extended-mission time limit of 2020. » 12/08/14 8:30pm 12/08/14 8:30pm

How Astronauts Use Laptops on the International Space Station

When the ISS was being designed, its architects wisely concluded that installing physical interfaces into the structure of the ISS was not a good idea. It's very hard to upgrade and/or repair interfaces that are part of the vehicle, whereas if laptop computers are used, upgrading or repair is as simple as launching… » 11/05/14 11:24am 11/05/14 11:24am

The Space Station Had to Change Its Orbit to Avoid Space Junk

If you've seen Gravity, you know how it goes: Even a tiny speck of paint shooting through space at 18,000 mph can be catastrophic. So when a hand-sized piece of space debris was going to fly by the International Space Station last week, the European Space Agency fired up the thrusters on a resupply ship docked at… » 11/04/14 1:52pm 11/04/14 1:52pm

How NASA Deals With Odor Inside the International Space Station

Space may be a vacuum, but at least aboard the International Space Station, smells still have plenty of room to waft. And considering the ISS has 6 living, breathing, excreting human beings living in such close proximity, some of those smells could get to be a major problem. Fortunately, NASA's accounted for that. » 10/21/14 4:00pm 10/21/14 4:00pm

The View From the ISS Is Surprisingly Colorful

At night, the view from the International Space Station is surprisingly colorful. Earth's many types of artificial lights create a bright mosaic, with the different hues revealing different lightbulbs and even different countries. » 10/20/14 5:22pm 10/20/14 5:22pm

Unbelievable view of the International Space Station

You are looking at the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer onboard the ISS. The news is that, "after accumulating years of data, [...] there are significantly more positrons than expected at the highest energies detected." Scientists believe their origin may be the destruction of dark matter, which is amazing. » 10/06/14 9:23pm 10/06/14 9:23pm

Space Station Defies Humans, Launches Satellites Without Permission

The International Space Station has a cannon that launches tiny CubeSat microsatellites into orbit. Most of the time, those launches are triggered by human scientists on board or back on Earth. But this week, the ISS launched two CubeSats entirely on its own. This is how the uprising begins. » 9/06/14 3:00pm 9/06/14 3:00pm

The First Vine From Outer Space Packs One Earth Orbit Into Six Seconds

Astronaut Reid Wiseman tweeted this Vine shot from an observation window on the International Space Station this week. It shows one full orbit of the ISS around planet earth. It's the first Vine recorded from outer space, and it's literally out of this world. » 6/07/14 8:00pm 6/07/14 8:00pm

NASA's Using Space Laser to Download Video From Orbit at Gigabit Speeds

NASA's latest data download just covered way more distance, and contained way more awesome, than any earthbound file transfer: the agency beamed a high-def video down from the International Space Station this week using a high-powered laser. Go ahead and give your WiFi router a good stern look. » 6/07/14 10:00am 6/07/14 10:00am

This photo of the ISS looks like a scene from a space horror movie

If you told me this was a frame from Alien 5*—with some dude about to get into the dark corridor in which the xenomorph hides, waiting to kill him—I would totally believe you. In reality, it's another cool image by astronaut Reid Wiseman, who is now working in the International Space Station. » 6/05/14 12:15am 6/05/14 12:15am

These Are NASA's (Ugly) New Astronaut Shoes

On Thursday, NASA is sending the astronauts on the International Space Station a new pair of shoes. These so-called ForceShoes are not for space walks. They're actually a high tech measurement device that helps NASA scientists gain a better understanding of the effects that heavy loads have on astronauts' bodies. » 5/28/14 6:20pm 5/28/14 6:20pm

Russia Will Shut Down All U.S. GPS Stations Within Its Borders (Update)

Russia Today has unconfirmed reports that Russia announced today a plan to shut down all 11 American-run GPS stations within Russian territory starting June 1st. Russia has also threatened to stop supplying the rocket engines the U.S. uses to launch military satellites into orbit. » 5/13/14 10:58am 5/13/14 10:58am

Watch the ISS's View of Earth Live, Right Here, Right Now

NASA just switched on the High Definition Earth Viewing experiment, a live stream view of earth beamed directly from the International Space Station. See the view, hear the crew's radio communications—it's almost like being on board! » 5/02/14 12:52pm 5/02/14 12:52pm

The SpaceX Launch Is Sending Dinosaur Microbes to the Space Station

The SpaceX Dragon capsule that just left Earth for the International Space Station is carrying many an important item: a new laser communication system, coffee (which they just ran out of!), a planter for fresh produce, and billions and billions of microbes swabbed from dinosaur bones, sneakers, and spacecraft clean… » 4/18/14 4:45pm 4/18/14 4:45pm

Soyuz Thruster Malfunction Has ISS Crew Running Two Days Late

Yesterday afternoon's Soyuz launch has hit a snag. A thruster misfire means the planned six-hour flight, delivering U.S. astronaut Steven Swanson and Russian cosmonauts Alexander Skvortsov and Oleg Artemyev to the International Space Station, will now take two days. Talk about a terrifying flight delay. » 3/26/14 1:30pm 3/26/14 1:30pm