Surprisingly enough for a space junkie like me, I've never seen this image of the MIR—the Soviet space station that was destroyed on reentry on 2001 after 5,519 days in orbit. The photo was taken from the space shuttle Atlantis on the mission STS-71, docked in the photo below.
Fire — it is one of the first technological advancements made by early humans, but it nearly destroyed one of humanity's greatest achievements, the Mir Space Station. In 1997, a fire aboard Mir endangered the lives of the crew and could have ended the decade-long effort and collaboration between Russia, Japan, the…
Astronauts may not expose their nostrils to the vacuum of space, but folks who come back from space walks report that they've brought a very distinctive odor back with them. And the space stations have their own special (and not necessarily pleasant) scents, including perfume of the Mir Space Station, which is…
No, this isn't a black hole sucking Earth up. It's a solar eclipse zipping across the Earth's surface at 2000 kilometers per hour. This stunning shot was taken from the Mir space station on August 11, 1999. [CNES/NASA; thanks Roklimber!]
This Sunday there will be a total solar eclipse over the south Pacific Ocean, Chile and Argentina. Watching solar eclipses from Earth is a rare occurrence. Watching them from space is extraordinarily rare. Here are the best photos and videos.
How did I miss this? The Toy Story action figure returned on the space shuttle Discovery last Friday, after first launching aboard STS-124 on May 31st 2008. Here's a video of his time on the International Space Station:
In space, no one can hear you scream "Fire." Not that it'd matter, as few people could recognize a microgravity fire anyway. This means space firefighting gear needs to be special. NASA is on it.