VIDEO: Thought Leader Series – Challenges of Building the Space Station

Explore the challenges of building the International Space Station (ISS) from retired NASA astronauts Scott Parazynski and Mike Foreman in this Feb. 6 installment of our ongoing Thought Leader Series, presented by University of Texas Medical Branch

The presentation is moderated by Space Center Houston scientist in residence Dr. John Charles.

In 1998, the first segment of a truly international space station was launched into low-Earth orbit.

In 2000, the Expedition 1 crew became the first to live and work aboard the International Space Station (ISS), but it would take over a decade to finish building the massive floating laboratory.

The space station is a feat of engineering. The large modules and other pieces of the station were delivered on 42 assembly flights, 37 on the U.S. space shuttles and five on Russian Proton/Soyuz rockets.

An acre of solar panels powers the station. The solar array wingspan (240 feet) is about the same length as the world’s largest passenger aircraft, the Airbus A380. The space station is 357 feet end-to-end, one yard shy of the full length of an American football field including the end zones. Eight miles of wire connects the electrical power system aboard the space station.

The International Space Station (ISS) has been continuously inhabited by multinational crews since November 2000, surpassing the previous record of nearly 10 years by the Russian Mir space station.

The Feb. 6 Thought Leaders Series continues Space Center Houston’s ongoing recognition of twenty years of continuous human occupancy aboard the ISS. Our 2020 panel of experts includes both the planners and the doers and will provide an evening of fascination and information as they tell how the ISS took shape hundreds of miles above the earth.

Learn more about Thought Leader Series

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