International Space Station (ISS)
Launched October 7, 2002 aboard the Space Shuttle Orbiter Atlantis, the STS-112 mission lasted 11 days and performed three sessions of Extra Vehicular Activity (EVA). Its primary mission was to install the Starboard Side Integrated Truss Structure (S1) and Equipment Translation Aid (CETA) Cart to the International Space Station (ISS). The S1 truss provides structural support for the orbiting research facility's radiator panels, which use ammonia to cool the Station's complex power system. The S1 truss, attached to the S0 (S Zero) truss installed by the previous STS-110 mission, flows 637 pounds of anhydrous ammonia through three heat rejection radiators. The truss is 45-feet long, 15-feet wide, 10-feet tall, and weighs approximately 32,000 pounds. The CETA is the first of two human-powered carts that will ride along the International Space Station's railway providing a mobile work platform for future extravehicular activities by astronauts. In this photograph, Astronaut Piers J. Sellers uses both a handrail on the Destiny Laboratory and a foot restraint on the Space Station Remote Manipulator System or Canadarm2 to remain stationary while performing work at the end of the STS-112 mission's second space walk. A cloud-covered Earth provides the backdrop for the scene.
The International Space Station (ISS) is a habitable space station in low Earth orbit with an altitude of between 330 and 435 km (205 and 270 mi). It completes 15.54 orbits per day. Its first component launched into orbit in 1998, and the ISS is now the largest man-made body in low Earth orbit. The ISS consists of many pressurized modules, external trusses, solar arrays, and other components. ISS components have been launched by Russian Proton and Soyuz rockets, and American Space Shuttles. The ISS is a space research laboratory, the testing ground for technologies and systems required for missions to the Moon and Mars. The station has been continuously occupied for 16 years and 201 days since the arrival of Expedition 1 on 2 November 2000. This is the longest continuous human presence in low Earth orbit, having surpassed the previous record of 9 years and 357 days held by Mir. The station is serviced by a variety of visiting spacecraft: the Russian Soyuz and Progress, the American Dragon and Cygnus, the Japanese H-II Transfer Vehicle, and formerly the Space Shuttle and the European Automated Transfer Vehicle. It has been visited by astronauts, cosmonauts and space tourists from 17 different nations.