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ISS - What is it used for?

  1. Jul 19, 2009 #1
    Top of the day to ya,
    I monitor the development of the International Space Station and I have some idea of what the daily routine of the crew looks like but I am missing a cruical piece of information which seems to be never mentioned. What exactly are the astronauts doing up there? What do they research? Wikipedia nor Google satisfied me. :(

    Cheers
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 20, 2009 #2
    They're testing out space toilets.....gotta make sure those kinda things work properly before heading for Mars ya know.....otherwise, ...well you know....

    :biggrin:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/28/science/space/28nasaw.html

    I knew we shoulda sent a certified plumber up there with these guys.
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2009
  4. Jul 20, 2009 #3

    cepheid

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    I don't understand this either. A big deal was made in the Canadian media recently about the latest Canadian astronaut to go up to ISS (on the Soyuz, not the shuttle). His mission was ostensibly to study the effects of prolonged spaceflight on the human body. But if I recall correctly, the duration of this mission is actually shorter than the durations that some of the Russian cosmonauts etc. have been in space in the past. Is it just that the ISS has better equipment for doing these studies? Or are these missions just made up in order to sound good?
     
  5. Jul 20, 2009 #4

    mgb_phys

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