Station Hosts Crews Conducting Science for 15 Years Today

Expedition 1
Expedition 1
Expedition 1, the first space station crew, poses inside the Zvezda service module with a model of the young International Space Station. Pictured in December 2000 (from left) are Commander William Shepherd and Flight Engineers Yuri Gidzenko and Sergei Krikalev.

Today marks 15 years of continuous habitation aboard the International Space Station. Expedition 1, the first station crew, docked Nov. 2, 2000 after launching two days earlier inside the Soyuz TM-31 spacecraft.

The young space station at the time consisted of just three modules including the Zarya module, the Zvezda service module and the Unity module. Commander William Shepherd and Flight Engineers Sergei Krikalev and Yuri Gidzenko spent 141 days in space, saw two space shuttle missions and the addition of a solar array truss structure and the U.S. Destiny laboratory module.

The current six-member crew, Expedition 45, consists of NASA astronauts Scott Kelly and Kjell Lindgren, Japanese astronaut Kimiya Yui and veteran cosmonauts Sergey Volkov, Mikhail Kornienko and Oleg Kononenko. Kelly and Kornienko are spending nearly a year in space.

The crew worked a wide variety of lab maintenance and advanced science exploring how life adapts to long-term space missions with potential benefits to Earth-bound humans and future astronauts. Today they researched new exercise techniques and how living in space affects a crew member’s attitude.

The crew also explored how the station’s habitat affects the orbiting resident’s mental state and how lack of sleep and fatigue affects a crew member’s cognition. Another ongoing experiment that took place today researched the dynamic loads the space station experiences during spacecraft dockings, spacewalks and even crew exercise.

2 thoughts on “Station Hosts Crews Conducting Science for 15 Years Today”

  1. Congratulations for15th Anniversary of the Space Station. Team work is so nice. The sprit of hand in hand and helping each others is my favorite.

  2. The basis of this comment is to congratulate the NASA for their hard work on the International Space Station (ISS).

    I did not realize it, but the research being done through NASA combined with other partnerships are not only for the advancement in space, but on earth as well. For example, I read in the Washington Post about NASA and academic scientists teaming up “to study drugs designed to reduce astronaut bone loss during long-duration flights.” Obviously, this will help NASA become more prepared regarding safety of their astronauts on longer trips, but that research can also benefit those who are immobilized or have osteoporosis. Who would have thought those two could be related?

    I will admit, I did question the benefits of the ISS compared to the cost, but I believe there is so much to learn from sending people to and conducing research experiments in space. For instance, during my stay in Washington D.C. I visited the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum and saw a short film in the planetarium titled “Dark Universe.” It explains that we can only see roughly 5% of the universe and the other 95% is labeled the “Dark Universe.” The movie illustrates truly how small we are compared to the infinite amounts of energy and mass in the universe. We have a lot of work ahead of us with 95% of the universe unknown.


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