Latest News

    Station Crew Awaiting Shuttle Launch

    ISS020-E-031128: Cosmonaut Gennady Padalka Image above: Expedition 20 Commander Gennady Padalka performs a check on an air filter unit in the Zvezda service module of the International Space Station. Credit: NASA

    With the launch of space shuttle Discovery delayed until early Wednesday, the Expedition 20 crew had an extra day Tuesday to prepare the International Space Station for the arrival of the STS-128 crew.

    Discovery, scheduled to launch Wednesday at 1:10 a.m. EDT on the STS-128 mission, is carrying more than seven tons of supplies, science racks and equipment, as well as additional environmental hardware to sustain six crew members on the orbital outpost. The shuttle also will deliver the newest Expedition crew member, astronaut Nicole Stott, for a three-month stay aboard the station.

    Flight Engineer Tim Kopra, who will be returning home aboard Discovery, spent some time completing additional departure preparations. Later, Kopra worked in the Japanese Kibo module to replace a hard disk in the video recording unit of an experiment studying the Marangoni effect, which is the flow of liquids caused by surface tension.

    Flight Engineer Mike Barratt collected samples from surfaces throughout the station and tested them for microbial contamination. For this task, the crew uses LOCAD, the Lab-on-a-Chip Application Development-Portable Test System, which detects biological and chemical substances within 15 minutes.

    In the Russian segment of the station, Commander Gennady Padalka inspected the sediment collector in the condensate water processor, while Flight Engineer Roman Romanenko cleaned fan guard screens.

    Supporting NASA’s mission to inspire the next generation of explorers, flight engineers Bob Thirsk and Frank De Winne teamed up to record an educational video demonstration. These videos recorded by crews living and working aboard the station are used in developing curriculum support materials for distribution to educators internationally.

    › Read more about STS-128

    › Read more about Expedition 20
    › View crew timelines

    2009 International Space Station Calendar

    As part of NASA's celebration of the 10th anniversary of the International Space Station, the agency is offering a special 2009 calendar to teachers, as well as the general public.

    The calendar contains photographs taken from the space station and highlights historic NASA milestones and fun facts about the international construction project of unprecedented complexity that began in 1998.

    › Download calendar (5.3 Mb PDF)

International Space Station Features

Interactive Features

  • NASA Photosynths

    View NASA Photosynths

    NASA and Microsoft have released an interactive, 3-D photographic collection of internal and external views of the International Space Station and a model of the next Mars rover using Microsoft's Photosynth technology.

  • Do You Know Where Your Space Station Is?

    Do You Know Where Your Space Station Is?  →

    Thanks to the wonders of the Internet, real-time tracking data and the Gateway to Astronaut Photography of Earth, you can take a look at the Earth below from where the International Space Station is right now.

  • International Space Station Interactive Resource Guide

    Interactive Space Station Reference Guide

    Take a virtual tour of the orbital outpost.

See the Station in the Sky

Related Multimedia